Who are the Disciples of Christ?
We Disciples have beliefs and practices in common with all sorts of Christians. These apparent similarities sometimes are superficial, sometimes fundamental. We baptize by immersion, so we look like Baptists. We have Communion every Sunday, so we look like Roman Catholics. We stress the ministry of the laity, so we look a little like Quakers. Our congregations call their pastors rather than accepting assigned ministers, so in that respect, we look like Presbyterians. We rely heavily on preaching and teaching, so we look somewhat like Methodists. We have congregational government, so we look a lot like the United Church of Christ.
While Disciples honor no human-made creed, the preamble to a document called the Design for the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) poetically and prayerfully expresses our shared affirmations in this way:
"As members of the Christian Church, we confess that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, and proclaim Him Lord and Savior of the world.
In Christ's name and by His grace we accept our mission of witness and service to all people.
We rejoice in God, maker of heaven and earth, and in the covenant of love which binds us to God and to one another.
Through baptism into Christ we enter into newness of life and are made one with the whole people of God.
In the communion of the Holy Spirit we are joined together in discipleship and in obedience to Christ.
At the table of the Lord we celebrate with thanksgiving the saving acts and presence of Christ.
Within the universal church we receive the gift of ministry and the light of scripture.
In the bonds of Christian faith we yield ourselves to God that we may serve the One whose kingdom has no end.
Blessing, glory and honor be to God forever. Amen."