You can perhaps be religious without a church, but you cannot thus be religious in the way God wants you to be religious. And since religion is concerned with duties to God, it is for God to dictate the terms and conditions, not for us.
Your attitude is due to lack of knowledge and thought. You are contenting yourself with no more than a vague religious sentiment. But religion demands a devotedness of the whole man to God, a devotedness of mind and heart and will. That means that we must believe what God has taught, love Him above all else, and serve Him both by worship and obedience to His law.
“Since religion is concerned with duties to God, it is for God to dictate the terms and conditions, not for us.”
To do this a man must study and know just what God has revealed, and not be content with a merely vague religious outlook. And as he is not only an individual, but also a social being by his very nature, man must render both private and public worship to God. Christ established a Church to teach all nations and to gather to itself all whom it leads to a belief in Christ. One who says he is religious, yet who refuses to have anything to do with the Church Christ established, simply does not know the Christian religion.
“If the Church is an invisible institution, then no human being could say where the true Church is to be found.”
Church is a a visible institution
If the Church is an invisible quality confined to the souls of men, then no human being could say where the true Church is to be found, and no one could hear its voice or obey its precepts.
No. Our Lord established a visible society in this world, even though not of this world. And He compared it to a city set upon a hill which cannot be hid (Mt 5:14). One of the visible and organized Churches in this world today is His. And the Catholic Church alone can show the characteristics which He declared should be those of His true Church.
(Source: Radio Replies, Fr. L. Rumble MSC & Fr. C. Carty MSC, 1937)
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