Communion

In Jesus’ lifetime, He was usually  addressed as “Rabbi.”   Just as the title “Doctor” means  “teacher, “ so also “Rabbi” means “teacher.”

At some point in their relationship with Jesus, many called Him “Lord.” At that time and place, a “lord,”—as in England today—meant  the owner/ruler of an estate.   It can also be construed as the relationship of a lower ranked soldier to a commanding officer.  And, it is clear, that attached to the basic meaning are elements of respect, awe, and love.

In the very earliest days of Christianity, pagans learned of the Communion service (aka “Mass”) and declared of the Christians, “They are  cannibals!”

Instead, Christians are (or should be) a group of people “in community”  who share in mystical but meaningful symbols.  Our Pilgrim Chapel community is—or, at least aspires to be) a group of persons who care so much about one another that we are “brothers” or “sisters.”

In the Gospel we read that and His disciples are gathered  to celebrate the Passover (Pesach) with his closest followers.

PASSOVER  is a Jewish holy day which celebrates the liberation of  the Jews from slavery in Egypt.  Our communion liturgy does not resemble a Passover Haggadah (service) that I can see.   However, one of the central points of COMMUNION shares the central point of the Passover: LIBERATION.      Holy Communion  celebrates  the deliverance of Jesus’ disciples from ALL the limitations and burdens of being human:  deliverance from slavery, from  hunger, fear, worry, deliverance from our acceptance of limitations,  and more.  Jesus is the “door” to a radically new way of thinking and living.

Most of us are simple beginners in learning and living the “Jesus  way.”   BUT, we have begun.  We do try to help one another, be available to one another, celebrate one another, and share with one another.    We do try to be a community gathered about the life, the teachings, and the being that was Jesus.  Hence, our strength, our confidence, our trust, and our joy grows.

Eating the Communion bread celebrates “the body (community) of Christ:” that is, we joyfully prize that worldwide community of men and women who are committed to justice, peace, liberty, respect and kindness….AND to mystical and prayerful spiritual growth.

Drinking the wine, celebrates taking the Christ spirit into our lives.   We welcome into our own lives that quality of the eternal that has no bounds, and which does not fear death, but sees death as a natural and normal part of life, as we simply pass into a new state of being.

Communion celebrates life, joy, personhood, mystery and the eternal.