7. The Church here and hereafter

The Church was founded by Jesus himself, in order that through it he might in every generation continue his Ministry of:

  • preaching the Gospel;
  • teaching the Christian Faith;
  • bringing people to God;
  • making them fit to share his life both here and hereafter.

The Church is thus the People and Family of God; and the Body of Our Lord through which he works in the world.


The Church on earth is organised into dioceses, each under its own Bishop.  An unbroken Apostolic Succession ensures that Bishops, as successors of the Apostles, have the same authority as they did as personal representatives of Our Lord.

Members of the Church are still members in the next world.  Those in Purgatory – the Faithful Departed – are waiting to become perfect.  We pray for them.  Those in Heaven, where God is seen, have now become perfect.  They are the Saints and we ask them to pray for us.  (See the Ludo Board example in the Church in Purgatory).