This was a communion Sunday in our congregation. We have traditionally taken communion sitting in the pews, passing the elements out to the people on trays. Now, for a variety of reasons, we are frequently using the practice of intinction to celebrate the Lord’s Supper. Today was one of those intinction Sundays, and so the members of the congregation came to the front of the sanctuary to receive the bread and dip it into the cup, which I was holding.
Many of our people have told me that they value this manner of celebration because they feel more personally connected to the sacrament, and I have felt that I understood this perspective. This morning, though, I had a more vivid experience than I have previously had when administering the sacrament. Today, as each person came forward to dip the bread into the cup, I was particularly aware of those ways that I have been privileged to be a fellow traveler with them as their pastor: sitting in a hospital room as a spouse returned from surgery; talking in their home or my office during a special season of trial they had faced; lunches spent discussing the gifts they were recognizing in their lives, and how they might use them; joining together in an exhilarating moment of shared ministry. In each of these recollections, I was reminded of the presence of Christ Jesus with us, joining us together in those moments, making us one with Him and with one another.
I will only add that it was a sweet sensation to be caught by surprise, to be given a view of another layer of the way Jesus is at work in and among us. It was a gift. Thanks be to God.