"A Sower went out to sow," and as he cast the seed, a wind picked up the holy seed and, while some fell and grew where it was cast, much more was spread on the wind and landed far and wide. Some fell on open ground, some in forests and thickets, and some among tares. As they grew, they came to share one and all in the same semblance, being all of one kind. Each plant grew from seed in the Sower's bag, itself having come from the Sower's own crib and field. Now, as time passed, fences, and even walls, went up, that the plants could not see beyond. They lost touch with their brothers and sisters far away, or even near by, if there were walls blocking the way. They remembered the Sower, and they knew whose plants they were, but since they were not in a great wheat field as intended, they tended to be only conscious of the Sower but not of their fellow stalks.
As you might expect, the Sower was wise and diligent. Each seed that had come of his hand was just as important to him as any of the others, whether it were growing in the choice field or a forest far away. So wherever the stalks were growing, the Sower would be watching, and making sure they were fed and watered. His helpers were watching all this, and asked why he didn't transplant the stalks back to the home field, and why not weed out the tares, the false wheat, from around the good seed. The seed was scattered, he told them, so that it would produce a better harvest. And the tares were harmful, yes, but they also provided competition to cause the good stalks to grow straighter. He would sort out the tares in good time.
Harvest time came, and the Sower sent out his helpers to bring in the stalks. They harvested the home field, and they went out and brought in all the wheat from the faraway fields and thickets as well. As they were gathered all into the barn, some of the stalks began to complain, that foreign grain was being brought into their barn, and that these "outsiders" were not of "their" lineage. The Sower stood by, quietly listening. When there was a loud enough outcry, with all the stalks of such opinion were voicing their complaint, he directed his helpers, "Go and remove those tares from among my wheat, and take care to burn them thoroughly, lest any of that bitter seed remain!
This story occurred to me as I was thinking about the way the fellowship among Christians, and the effectiveness of Christ's Church, has been splintered since the Roman bishop decided to "excommunicate" the entire Eastern 4/5 of the Church, and then another Roman bishop, and a Swiss priest, a few hundred years later started the trend of everybody excommunicating everybody. The Eastern churches seem to have held it together better than most, in terms of keeping things on a "fellowship" level more than a military-style, "allegiance" scheme, but how does Jesus see it? How many times does the Bible tell us to build bureaucracies, or judge the Faith according to class membership? He said to follow Him, and to love one another, to receive His Spirit, and bear witness of His Resurrection and Lordship. Anything else?