A model is simply an image that helps us get a better understanding of a complex reality. Models of the Church are valid approaches to Catholicism that explain actions in faith. These include the model of Institution, Herald, Mystical Communion, Sacrament, and Servant. Each of these models explain definitions of Church and their goals and functions to justify their view of how the Catholic Church should behave. The first, Institution, defines Church as visible and palpable, lacking nothing and subordinate to no other. It describes itself using political analogies. It emphasizes what is visible; rules, governing, body, actual members, structure, etc. Its functions and goals are to teach (resembling a school in which the teachers hand on doctrine), to sanctify (the pope and bishops guide others to holiness – pastoral), and to govern (hierarchy to govern the “flock” with their own authority that’s derived from Christ). Its strengths are unity across groups, stability, and effective ministry. One example of this model is Pope Pius V and the Council of Trent, He decided to put an end to the Protestant Reformation to sanctify the church from both internal and external corruption. Another model, Harold, defines Church as a community united by faith for the purpose of proclaiming the Gospel. It describes itself using no formal structure or relationship among other faith communities. Herald emphasizes kerygma – the original Gospel message – and mission. Its goals and functions are to proclaim the world to all and to grow in relationship with knowledge of Jesus. Its strengths are that the model is that its Gospel based, its spontaneity is preserved, and it puts emphasis on personal relationships with Christ. Examples of Harold are St. Francis and St. Dominic. They performed missionary work around Europe while preaching about the Gospel. Their “walk-the-walk talk-the talk” attitudes and behaviors drew plenty of members to...
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