The Young Rite provides a Summary of Doctrine, based largely on that of The Liberal Catholic Church. As we subscribe to intellectual freedom, we do not require anyone to accept this doctrine. It is offered as a framework only.
The Young Rite teaches the existence of God, infinite, eternal, transcendent and immanent. God is neither male nor female and at the same time both masculine and feminine. God is the one essence from which all forms of existence are derived. ‘In him we live and move and have our being’ (Acts 17:28).
God manifests in his universe as a Trinity, called in the Christian religion Father, Son and Holy Spirit, three Persons in one God, co-equal and co-eternal; the Father the cause of all, the Son the Word who was made flesh and dwelt among us, the Holy Spirit the life-giver, the inspirer and sanctifer.
The human being is a complex of spirit, soul and body. The human spirit is made in the image of God and is divine in essence. Therefore s/he cannot cease to exist, s/he is eternal and its future is one whose glory and splendour have no limit.
Christ ever lives as a mighty spiritual presence in the world, guiding and sustaining his people. The divinity which was manifest in him is gradually being unfolded in every human being until each shall come ‘unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ’ (Eph. 4:13).
The world is the theatre of an ordered plan, according to which the human spirit, by repeatedly expressing itself in varying conditions of life and experience, continually unfolds its powers. This spiritual unfoldment takes place under an inviolable law of cause and effect. ‘Whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also reap’ (Gal. 6:7). His/her doings in each physical incarnation largely determine the experience after death in the intermediate world (or world of purgation) and the heavenly world, and greatly influence the circumstances of his/her next birth. Humankind is a link in a vast chain of life extending from the highest to the lowest. As the human being helps those below him/her, so also s/he is helped by those who stand above him/her on the ladder of life, receiving thus a free gift of grace. There is a communion of saints, just humans made perfect or holy ones, who help mankind. There is a ministry of angels.
The human being has ethical duties to him/herself and to others. ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment and the second is like unto it, thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and Prophets’. (Matt.22:37-40). It is the duty of the human being to learn to discern the divine light in him/herself and others, that light ‘which lighteth every man’ (John. 1:9). Because human beings are children of God they are inseparably linked together as a brotherhood. That which harms one harms the entire brotherhood. Hence a human being owes it as a duty to the God both within him/herself and others, first, to endeavour constantly to live up to the highest that is in him/her, thereby enabling that immanent God to become more perfectly manifest, secondly, to recognize the fact of that brotherhood by constant effort towards unselfishness, by love of, consideration for, and service to his fellow-human beings. The service of humanity, reverence for all life and the sacrifice of the lower self to the higher are laws of spiritual growth.
Christ instituted various sacraments in which an inward and spiritual grace is given to us through an outward and visible sign. There are seven rites which may be ranked as sacraments, namely, Baptism, Confirmation, the Holy Eucharist (Holy Communion), Absolution, Holy Unction, Holy Matrimony, Holy Orders. The doctrine of these sacraments is sufficiently set forth in the authorized Liturgy of The Young Rite. Christ, the living head of the church which he founded, is the true minister of all sacraments.
O Lord, thou hast created the human being to be immortal and made it to be an image of thine own eternity. Yet often we forget the glory of our heritage and wander from the path that leads to righteousness. But thou, O Lord, hast made us for thyself and our hearts are ever restless till they find their rest in thee. Look with the eyes of thy love upon our manifold imperfections and pardon all our shortcomings, that we may be filled with the brightness of the everlasting light and become the unspotted mirror of thy power and the image of thy goodness; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Act of Faith.
We believe that God is love and power and truth and light; that perfect justice rules the world; that all shall one day reach perfection, however far they stray. We hold the parenthood of God, the brotherhood of humanity; we know that we do serve God best when best we serve our neighbour. So shall God’s blessing rest on us and peace for evermore. Amen.