The United Catholic Church is a welcoming, inclusive faith community that aims to connect Christians through pastoral care, sacramental celebrations, and ecumenism. When we pray together as a community of different faiths, gender identities, and races/ethnicities, our differences no longer define us, but rather bind us closer together to experience the unity from which Christ has called all of us to live.
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 4:10-11)
Peter clarifies that the term ministry applies to all types of special services, or intellectual pursuits as long as it serves or benefits a community (even outside of church.) It means you are bringing your unique talents to serve the community at large.
In the United Catholic Church we embrace the fact that all women and men are called by their baptism to ministry. The ministries include:
Hospital and Hospice Chaplains
HIV and Aids Ministers
Social Justice Action
Small Faith Communities
These are but a few of the ministries currently in practice in the United Catholic Church.
Do all of these ministries require ordination? NO! But, they do require special training and certification.
Are you one of those who wants to share your gifts with others? If you feel the urge to serve your community, contact Bishop Hollis Dodge to assist in your discernment and discover the possibilities serve others through the power of the Spirit.
A GREAT SPIRITUAL HUNGER
A great spiritual hunger is a hallmark of our age. Our age, however, is such a secular one that many of us do not recognize this hunger for what it is. We feel an emptiness deep within and we try to fill it with consumer goods or exercise workshops. Our restless narcissism takes up one fad after another but, since we were not truly hungry for them, we weary of them.
Spiritual nourishment comes only with self-forgetfulness. This seems paradoxical; and yet transcending ourselves is the greatest gift that can be bestowed. Haven’t we noticed that the people who seem most at peace in the world are those who live for others?
When we find a true source of spiritual wealth, we can learn to satisfy our hunger. And it will recur! Our needs for refreshment of the spirit will be more focused, better defined, and we will know how to satisfy them. We can never nourish our spirits by concentrating on ourselves.
Too often we’ve thought spirituality is for the aged, the sick, or the dying. If we are young, healthy, and successful, we may think we don’t need to communicate with a Higher Power. “I’m fine right now,” we may say. “I will later on.”
The time to establish contact with a Higher Power is now. From the minute we come kicking and screaming into this world until our last breath, there is a Power greater than ourselves watching over us. This Power guides us, strengthens us, and helps us grow without our even acknowledging it is there. But it is because we don’t acknowledge its presence that we become lost, confused, depressed, angry, hopeless, or unforgiving.
Bishop Bob Mueller
UNITED CATHOLIC CHURCH
We are often asked why we chose the United Catholic Church in our quest to find a community home. Our first response, generally speaking, is come and see? Recently, some of us discussed how we came to be in the UCC and decided to share our stories.
Below is the first of many stories of "How We Got Here." The first offering is from Bishop Hollis Dodge.
How I Ended Up in the UCC
I spent twenty years in ministry with the denomination I joined as a college student. Parish ministry suited me, and Christian community sustained me; the sacraments nurtured me, and the antiquity of the Church conveyed a Mysterium Tremendum. Neo-traditionalism gained ascendancy in the denomination, and I felt increasingly edged to the fringes of the church. In the and I began looking elsewhere for the spirit of tolerance and ecumenism I sought.
I was led to the United Catholic Church by an Episcopal deacon who was taking a course in spiritual direction from an Old Catholic bishop. I contacted this bishop, was referred to the then-presiding bishop, and eventually granted standing. It combined the Apostolic Tradition with the Sacramental life, but with flexibility.
It takes a bit of getting used to -- the American Old Catholic theology and mentality: less structure, less status, less oversight. But imagination and elasticity are encouraged and sustained. We enjoy personal ties with one another at every level of ministry and membership and we don’t worry overmuch about titles and prerogatives since we are small and poor. We concentrate on person-to-person ministry and the ties that bind us.
Used by License and permission o f artist HeQi