For many weeks now because of the pandemic many of us have not been able to gather together for the celebration of the Eucharist. This has been painful for many, for others it has awakened a deeper sense of communion and still for others it has fostered creativity in “gathering” for prayer. No matter how we have reacted to this pandemic and what it has done to our communal prayer life, hopefully it has revealed to us the true beauty of the Eucharist.
Eucharist calls us to the dignity of who we are: The Body of Christ. If we only receive communion as a token or reward then we fail to truly live out what Jesus said, “do this in remembrance of me.” In remembrance of Jesus means our lives poured out for the life of another, our living is for the building up of the kingdom, our community is to be a union of all the members of the body. To be Eucharist means our actions and words testify to our “Amen” when we receive the sacred meal.
Over these past several weeks we have seen the Eucharist in action, not at the altars of our churches but in the altars of the world. We have witnessed sacrifice and service on many levels, we have seen actions which speak of the strengths of the body of Christ and we have seen much to be thankful for (Eucharist means “thanksgiving”) during these tiring times. Yes, the celebration of the Eucharist, the church gathered together, is important and necessary and gift. Yet during this time we have been reminded about what not to take for granted and the challenge which the Eucharist calls us to: to be community and communion for each other, to live as heralds of the gospel, to live life in remembrance of the One who we share in Eucharist and to be thankful.
As we transition into the new normal let us remember that Eucharist “as sacrifice and meal, efficaciously (effectively) symbolizes the self-sacrificing service to others to which Christians are called” (A Concise Dictionary of Theology). Eucharist is clearly not just about receiving communion on Sunday. Eucharist is also about the reality of being united in Christ as his Body and the call to serve.
How are we to be Eucharist today, in these tiring times, in the work we need to do to help heal the broken and hurting body of Christ?
We are all a resurrection people, with this dignity, may we say “Amen” in the many ways we receive the Eucharist.
is us united
is for all.
all are welcome,
come and dine,
come and feast,
we are disciples,