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La fraternité en Christ : fondements de l’être ecclésial et son incidence africaine

Abstract : All the talk about relativism points out the difficulties related to the Church in a more globalised world. The ecclesial institution is no longer in the heart of the social organization. The Church has to make a way for herself in the midst of a constellation of systems which are, at times, put in competition one with the other. That raises ineluctably a question about the Church. What can one say about Her ? The Bible does not frankly answer the question, except that it offers several metaphors that have been more or less successfully taken by theologians. They constitute as many ecclesial models. These various representations convey a certain image of the Church and what she stands for. No paradigm seems to carry a unanimous vote. However the brotherhood presents more advantages than the others. That is why we consider it to be the best expression of the Church. lt is from this point of view that we have formulated the problematic of our essay on "Brotherhood in Christ: theological bases of ecclesial being and its African incidence". While combining the structural dimension with the brotherly feelings, the theology of the brotherhood surpasses the dead ends linked only with the institution on one hand and the virtues of the other. It goes beyond the limits set by human traditions. Indeed Church-Fraternity is primarily factor of relations. It connects man to God and draws closer people one to another. This doctorate thesis is the deepening of the research I started while I registered for the Master programme. It deals with the criteria for recognition of true ecclesial characters, which is ecclesiality. For some, the Church is a heavy legal machine, without heart and soul that crushes everything in its path. She makes her weight felt. Otherwise she does not manifest any compassion to those who do not comply with her guidelines. This Church seems distant and indifferent to people and their concerns. For others, the Church manifests the ideal of community life between women and men who answered the call of Jesus, have submitted their will to Him and made themselves his disciples. This is the picture one can get from the narrative of the Acts of the Apostles. This primitive communism was the specificity of the nascent community of Jerusalem. Instead Jesus directs people to the knowledge of the Father and leads them into a filial relationship. It then clearly appears that people are brought into a changed relationship. This is the dimension of the adoptive filiation by which they are recognized God's children, sisters and brothers in Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, and brother and sister vis­ à-vis others. This fraternity embraces everyone. Indeed filiation or being a direct descendant of someone establishes henceforth a new relationship in Jesus Christ. This community of sisters and brothers is realized only in the Holy Spirit. The Church, as a Fellowship, differs from any other company, for its social cohesion is based on the Gospel.
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Nestor Désiré Nongo Aziagbia. La fraternité en Christ : fondements de l’être ecclésial et son incidence africaine. Religions. Université de Strasbourg, 2012. Français. ⟨NNT : 2012STRAK013⟩. ⟨tel-00975169⟩

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