The church is the earthly community of God, built by Christ and dwelling under his headship. Christ selected 12 followers, building a community in parallel to Israel. This community offered healing, which built a community of hope, and in some cases, a restoration to societal acceptance.
We are described as light, which is a communal element. We are described in terms of communal imagery, vine and branch, sheep and shepherd.
And when this veil of tears is cast away once and for all, we enter into the ultimate communal relationship with Christ, that of bride and groom.