The Communion-Community of Christ
Discussion/Devotional Thought of the Day:
“544 The Communion of the Saints. How shall I explain it to you? You know what blood transfusions can do for the body? Well, that’s what the Communion of the Saints does for the soul.” Escriva, Josemaria. The Way
As a pastor, one of the things I do is to bring the Lord’s Supper to those who cannot make it to church, to those too weak or sick, to those who were once quite active, but now are counted as shut-ins. In doing so, the discussion always includes their asking about how things are going at church, it never fails to astound me, how concerned they are for their brothers and sisters in Christ. Often they talk of their desire to get well, to gain strength, just so they can once again commune in the sanctuary, with their friends, the people they love, with whom they have walked through their lives, even if they only knew the people at church for a small while.
We are on their hearts and minds.. and in bringing communion to them, they are reminded that they are part of the community. It is bittersweet, for they realize they are part of the community that Christ has established.
How I wish we were in the future, and we had transporter units like in Star Trek. Then we could beam them into the sanctuary, and fulfill a desire that they would have. (It would also be cool if upon “reassenbly” their ills and pains and weaknesses could be quarantined and separated from them!
St Escriva’s words hit home a lot today, as I consider one of the people I visit, who I can’t anymore. I know how much visiting him meant to me, how in many ways it was like the transfusion spoke of in this quote. Yet in bringing him communion, he two received a transfusion I am learning. The very life of the church was shared, the life we share in every time we gather and we eat together and drink together. For sharing in the Lord’s Table, kneeling at the Altar together is a community, thing, just as our life as Christ’s body is a community thing.
It is tragic that we don’t comprehend this blessing we have in sharing in the feast of Christ – that we would relegate it to less important than other things we do, that we place limits on its time, both the time we spend preparing for it, and the time we spend celebrating it. That we reduce the precious words to a formula, a incantation, rather than savor them, listen intently, and hear and absorb them. It is tragic that the gathering of God’s people is an afterthought in many lives.
As a pastor, I am partially responsible. If you know not why a priest, or a pastor, could describe the gathering of God’s people together around His sacrament as a spiritual transfusion, we haven’t done our job as those who proclaim the world well enough. If we haven’t taught you to treasure this incredible time, we have, in large part failed. If we don’t keep you in prayer, and help your prepare for this incredible gift, then perhaps we need to reconsider what our job is, to preach the word in its fullness, and to administer the sacrament – that those who are broken can encounter His healing, His mercy His presence.
Keep us, all the pastors and priests – and the deacons and elders and worship leaders who stand alongisde us, ready to serve, to minister to you… in your prayers. That we would feed you so richly that your heart would long for the next gathering the next time His people gather around His word, and His table.
“Lord Have Mercy!” we cry, and as we kneel and take and eat… and drink of the Blood shed that sins would be forgiven, we realize how much He has had the mercy we pray for!
Posted on August 11, 2012, in Devotions and tagged Apology, Church, Communion, community, escriva josemaria, Eucahrist, gospel, kneeling at the altar, Lord's Supper, prayers, sacrament, self evaluation, shut-ins, star trek, transfusion, transporters. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.