St Anthony, Abbot

For when one says, “I am of Paul,” and another, “I am of Apollos,” are you not mere men? What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, even as the Lord gave opportunity to each one. I planted, Apollos watered, but God was causing the growth. So then neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but God who causes the growth.

1 Corinthians 3: 5-7

.       .       .

This text isn’t from the Mass readings for today, or indeed from any of the Catholic offices, but from Anglican Morning Prayer. But it struck me deeply, possibly because I pray with my Anglican and Methodist colleagues as a Roman Catholic. Little things keep me conscious of the difference, like the version of the Lord’s Prayer we use. Texts like this, though, remind me why I am so happy to teach outside of my own confessional tradition. “Neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but God who causes the growth.” Probably also because the “plant” of my own faith grew from a Lutheran (ELCA) plant and has been nourished by the water of a fairly wide variety of Christian confessions, not without a dash of the charismatic (sparkling water, perhaps?).

So, I am very happy to pray together with my colleagues and friends the psalm set for Mass today:

Come, let us bow and bend low;
let us kneel before the God who made us;
For he is our God, and we are the people
   who belong to his pasture,
    the flock that is led by his hand.

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