Home Cell Guidelines
We find the Body of Christ - the church -
alive in these neighborhood groups (home cell) where people:-
- meet around the Word,
- nurturing and deepening their faith
- through Gospel sharing.
A sense of belonging is developed in these
small faith-sharing groups. It is here that Christians fulfill the mission of the Church
in the World (Loving and Caring for each other).
- New Testament commandment " love
your neighbour as yourself" Mathew 22:39
- Going to Church on Sunday is not enough to
grow as a Christian.
take place in homes on a weekly basis.
reason of meeting is Gospel sharing - meeting Jesus himself in the Word. We become
more aware of the presence of the Risen Lord in the midst of one another, thus deepening
our personal relationship with Christ and others. People meet around the Word.
- Members of a home cell community begin to look
after one another's needs, this includes taking care of the sick, lonely, &
un-evangelized. In this way, members are able to minister to each other, exercising
the Gifts (Charisms) of the Holy Spirit, rendering
services in Christ to one another, and enjoying the fruits
of the Holy Spirit.
- Thus the members start experiencing God's
caring love and power of the Holy Spirit.
- Members become integrated into the Life
of Church, as we are all living members of the Body of Christ.
Home Cell Format
The scriptural foundation: 1
Corinthians 14:26 , 1
The Roman Catholic Foundation: John Paul II's Encyclical Christifideles Laici
The practical format: These are suggested guidelines, and
are offered merely for consideration.
- Meet at 19h30 (or at any other agreed
time and place)
- Open up in Prayer
- Sing two or three songs or hymns (Praise and Worship).
Songs such as "Come Holy Spirit", "Shout to the Lord", etc are
- Listen to one of Alpha audio
tapes (supplied by Bryanston
Parish) or Read Parish scripture study guidelines, or simply read from
scripture according to the needs of the community. Choose a theme, such as the Love of
God, the compassion of Jesus Christ and read through the scriptural references. To
identify readings, use the Bible Search facility - Search by Topic (Bible Gateway -
Search the Bible) for a comprehensive list of
scriptural references on a particular theme.
- Use Bibles for the sharing periods in
group discussion format.
- Prayer Ministry opportunity e.g.
Laying on of hands intercession - using your gifts "Charisms". Allow for a period of time for silent prayer (resting in the
on the Lord), and for the movement and work of the Holy
Spirit. Seek the presence of the Spirit.
- End off with prayer at 21h30.
Things to avoid:
- Serving alcohol beverages
- Turning a home cell into an entertainment
evening or dinner service. Leave that for another occasion outside of the Home Cell
- Admonishing each other publicly.
- Never, never, never breach the confidence of
a home cell member. If you need to discuss any sensitive issue which has been brought to
your attention, seek advice from your Priest or Pastor.
Things to do:
- Invite a neighbour, friend or lapsed
Christian to your home cell and to Holy Mass;
- Seek and encourage one another in developing
your own ministry according to the will of the Spirit;
- Bring along a tape or CD with Praise and
Worship music to which all members can sing
- Interact with other home cells
- Reach out to your local community, serving
the poor, downtrodden, lonely.
- As a home cell group, offer your services to
one of the many Christian ministries, such as, for example, the Mother Theresa Homes
throughout the country.
- Develop your leadership (pastoring) skills
through attending seminars and workshops or reading appropriate books.
- Maintain a home cell diary or journal of
prophecies & revelations, and encourage each member to do so as well. God's Word is
often revealed over time, through many different means - personal revelation in prayer,
through scripture, from a friend ...
- Liaise with your Priest or Pastor, and keep
him informed of your Home Cell.
- Always give God the Glory!
- Remember the words of Christ - John
On the Use of the Gifts - Charisms
- We are all needed - each one of us have been
lavished with a Gift. Let's nurture these free Gifts that the Heavenly Father has given us
through the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. John Paul II
- All are called to use the Gifts (charisms)
they have been given by the Holy Spirit, to become active participants in the Life of the
Church. Pope John Paul II
- By a logic which looks to the divine source
of this giving [of the Gifts of the Spirit], as the Council recalls (80), the gifts of the
Spirit demand that those who have received them exercise them for the growth of the whole
Church. John Paul II
- Ministries and Charisms, the
Spirit's Gifts to the Church
21. The Second Vatican Council speaks of the ministries and charisms as the gifts of the
Holy Spirit which are given for the building up of the Body of Christ and for its mission
of salvation in the world(64). Indeed, the Church is directed and guided by the Holy
Spirit, who lavishes diverse hierarchical and charismatic gifts on all the baptized,
calling them to be, each in an individual way, active and co-responsible.
- A real sense of Church communion, the gift
of the Spirit that urges our free and generous response, will bring forth as its precious
fruit, in the "one and catholic" Church the continuing value of the rich variety
of vocations and conditions of life, charisms, ministries, works, and responsibilities, as
well as a more demonstrable and decisive collaboration of groups, associations and
movements of the lay faithful in keeping with the accomplishment of the commonly shared
salvific mission of the Church herself. This communion is already in itself the first
great sign in the world of the presence of Christ, the Saviour. At the same time, it
promotes and stimulates the proper apostolic and missionary action of the Church.
- The whole Church, Pastors and lay faithful
alike, standing on the threshold of the Third Millennium, ought to feel more strong]y the
Church's responsibility to obey the command of Christ, "Go into all the world and
preach the gospel to the whole creation" (Mk 16:15), and take up anew the
missionary endeavour. A great venture, both challenging and wonderful, is entrusted to the
Church-that of a re-evangelization, which is so much needed by the present world.
The lay faithful ought to regard themselves as an active and responsible part of this
venture, called as they are to proclaim and to live the gospel in service to the person
and to society while respecting the totality of the values and needs of both.
- We can speak of a new era of group
endeavours of the lay faithful. In fact, "alongside the traditional forming of
associations, and at times coming from their very roots, movements and new sodalities have
sprouted, with a specific feature and purpose, so great is the richness and the
versatility of resources that the Holy Spirit nourishes in the ecclesial community, and so
great is the capacity of initiative and the generosity of our lay people"(105).
- Ministries and charisms, being diverse and
complementary, are all necessary for the Church to grow, each in its own way.
- 24. The Holy Spirit, while bestowing
diverse ministries in Church communion, enriches it still further with particular gifts or
promptings of grace, called charisms. These can take a great variety of forms, both
as a manifestation of the absolute freedom of the Spirit who abundantly supplies them, and
as a response to the varied needs of the Church in history. The description and the
classification given to these gifts in the New Testament are an indication of their rich
variety. "To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the
Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues" (1 Cor 12:7-10; cf. 1 Cor 12:4-6, 28-31; Rom 12:6-8;
1 Pt 4:10-11).
EXHORTATION CHRISTIFIDELES LAICI OF HIS HOLINESS JOHN PAUL II ON THE
VOCATION AND THE MISSION OF THE LAY FAITHFUL IN THE CHURCH AND IN THE WORLD
Compiled by GDW 05/02/99