Richard Rohr – The Real Meaning of Apostolic Succession

The real meaning of apostolic succession is probably not bishops laying their hands on the next generation of priests, but Christians rubbing off on one another! I know we need a process for passing on leadership, but right now we need to pass on grace and healing much more.

We clergy find it much easier to magically transform bread than to transform people, situations, and the suffering of our world. Jesus’ transformations were immediately verifiable and visible through his nonstop ministry of healing and exorcism.

The real message here is not a mere medical cure (although I have seen them!), or whether Jesus could do such a thing, but that

(1) God cares about human pain,

(2) God cares about it in this world now,

(3) God’s action actually changes people in ways that we can see, and

(4) such people, and such people alone, are equipped to pass on the real message.


Author: DanutM

Anglican theologian. Former Director for Faith and Development Middle East and Eastern Europe Region of World Vision International

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