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Ramblings from the Rectory

Autumn 2015

I have been asked that during Ordinary Time – the period from Trinity Sunday (May) until All Saints/All Souls (November) that I preach on three topics; Eucharist, Mystery and Liturgical Colours/Vestments. Because of this I am hoping to give all readers a brief insight into Holy Communion.

The Eucharist, or Holy Communion, or Mass, or the Lord’s Supper all mean the same, that is the sharing of bread and wine at a service in Church. In our new service booklets an explanation is given inside the front cover.

All who are members of any Christian Church are welcome to share the bread and wine at a Church of England Service. Members of the Church of England usually have a period of preparation and then are Confirmed into the Church and start receiving Communion.

There has been for some years a policy of ‘Communion before Confirmation’, for children in Key Stage 2, around 8/9 years old who can understand what the service is about, and who have gone through some instruction. This is also available for adults preparing for Confirmation, although most adults wish to wait until the first Sunday after Confirmation where the Bishop lays his or her hands on the candidate. Children who have communion early are then encouraged to complete a course of Confirmation when they are older.

In Canon Law, which are the rules of the Church of England, it states that Communion should be taken regularly and especially at Easter, Whit Sunday (or Pentecost) and Christmas. It is considered the central rite of the church and historically some worshippers fasted before Communion and refused to drink even tea or coffee until after the service.

Some congregations take Communion daily and for others it has become a weekly ritual.

 

Some congregations take Communion daily and for others it has become a weekly ritual. As previously said the Eucharistic Service is the central rite of the church and should be seen as so. All believers are encouraged to attend and grow in their faith. Communion is not intended to be something that divides the congregation or is divisive; it should be seen, as it was intended by Christ, as the sharing of the bread and wine as a whole community, of giving ourselves one to another.

Christ shared the bread and wine at The Last Supper and he asked that we should all do this ‘…do this in remembrance of me’ Luke 22: verse 19.

There were several things that Christ asked us to do;- ‘love one another as I have loved you’ John 13: verses 34 and 35, to take the bread and wine in remembrance of him and to pray to our Father who knows what we need before we ask him, in the words of the Lord’s Prayer Matthew 6: verses 8 to 15.

This is only a brief account. Should you wish to know more, have a discussion, or even prepare for Confirmation please do not hesitate to contact me.

 

Every Blessing Rev Maggie

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