Posted by Annie D. in an E-group I belong to:
The center of Christianity is neither institution nor organization. Nor is it even the Bible itself, as the reformers made it, for the Ekklesia existed before the formation of the New Testament canon. Christians were in fellowship with God and one another, centering their faith in Christ, long before there was any accepted New Testament.
There is only one center of Christianity, and this center is spiritual fellowship with God through Christ - life union with God in Christ. When there is this koinonia, there is the Body of Christ, the Ekklesia. Where there is no koinonia with God there is no Ekklesia, because the life-union is lacking. Though there be many excellent clerical personages, many elegant church buildings, many scholarly dogmas and creeds, if there is no koinonia with God and Christ there can be no Ekklesia at all. On the other hand, if there is this koinonia with God and Christ, the Ekklesia exists - we need pay no attention to the differences of creeds, institutions and rituals, but by loving one another can be one in Christ.
(Kokichi Kurosaki is a Japanese Christian, author of "Let's Return to Christian Unity", the first in a two part series, and the second, "Church Unity and How to Get There")