Eucharist

There are a few words that are very deep for me. What I would like to do here is to post a word and talk about it a little and then ask you to add your thoughts and comments about the word.

Eucharist

We didn’t really call it that…we called it the Lord’s Supper. If we were talking to someone important or someone we thought was really smart we called it Communion.  It was something we did maybe once a month at church…not all that important or central to church or being Christian.

In my Christian “he-man” group we just finished reading a book by Rob Bell  and Don Golden called Jesus Wants to Save Christians. In chapter 6 he describes where we get the English word Eucharist…

“The Greek word for thankful is from the verb eucharizomai – the Greek word eu which means “well” or “good” and the word charizomai, which means “to grant or give”…

the “good gift”…Jesus is God’s good gift to the world. 

God has made peace with the world through the Eucharist, the good gift, of Jesus. And so Christians take part in a ritual, a meal, a reminder of the Passover, called the Eucharist…as a way of remembering and returning to who God is and what God has done in Christ.

God gives the world life through the breaking of Christ’s body and the pouring out of Christ’ blood. And God continues to give the world life through the body of Christ – who Paul tells his friends at Corinth is them.

They are His body. The body of Christ.

The church is a living Eucharist, because followers of Christ are living Eucharists.

A Christian is a living Eucharist, allowing her body to be broken and her blood to be poured out for the healing of the world.

The Eucharist is ultimately about what we do out there, in the flow of everyday life.

When did most churches stop the Eucharist from being every week? WHY did we stop the Eucharist from being every week?

Is it not at the heart of Christianity? Real and living Christianity

What does Eucharist mean to you?

About Eddie Broussard

Bond servant to Jesus the Christ, want to be harvest worker (only a few out there).
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  • Stu Smith

    Eddie – It looks like you don't come from the more liturgical end of the Church. We Lutherans most commonly refer to this sacrament as Holy Communion, even though we don't consider ourselves especially smart or important. Lutherans, Anglicans, and Roman Catholics share an understanding that Christ is really, bodily present (not symbolic) in the bread and the wine (we use wine) and celebrating communion in worship is core to Christian community. Anglican writer NT Wright (highly recommend – he speaks to us all across the spectrum) describes the action of Christ in communion as reaching back across the thin membrane between Heaven (where God is present) and earth (where it's more ambiguous) to be really present with us. Why would anyone not want to experience that as often as possible? In our tradition, we are moving from monthly + feast days (a compromise with the 19th Century idea that communion should be rare) to a return to celebration at every service. Of course the practice in the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches for their entire histories. Some of my Catholic friends celebrate it daily. Meant to be something we all experience together, Eucharist is often where we are most broken as the church – some Lutherans won't commune with my brand (ELCA), as we don't (normally) intercommune with Roman Catholics (although any communing Christian can commune in an ELCA congregation). To me, the family should eat together and argue politics later.

  • http://www.ebroussard.com/ ebroussard

    I was hoping someone from a more liturgical background would jump in the discussion. I have been attending the early service of a local Episcopal church for about 9 months now and I am humbled by the focus on the Eucharist. I know the Reformation may have been good in some aspects but taking the focus off of the Eucharist and on the preaching has not been so good for me (just now starting to understand that). Thanks for your comments and I so agree with you…”the family should eat together and argue later”…much later!

  • http://www.liturgy.co.nz Bosco

    Thanks Eddie for your comment at http://www.liturgy.co.nz/blog/as-it-was-in-the-… and your invitation to comment here. Others have already made the point, I think, that the Eucharist (Lord's Supper, Breaking of the bread, etc) was central in the New Testament – it is what we are commanded to do by Jesus. His meals were central to enacting his Kingdom message and it was inevitable that a meal enshrined his ongoing message and life. It is a command that has not been broken across 100,000 Sundays of our history. So I'm not sure where you get the idea that “most churches stop[ped celebrating] the Eucharist from being every week?” Most churches celebrate the Eucharist every Sunday at least. For Martin Luther, certainly, the Eucharist was central. So it was not essential to the Reformation to take the focus off the Eucharist. The Reformation in England resulted not in lessening the focus on the Eucharist – it continued to be celebrated at least every Lord's Day – in fact there came to be a stronger stress on receiving communion than the Medieval inherited tradition had had it. It is wonderful to see people like you, picking up the Biblical texts and looking at them afresh and seeing that there we find encouragement to celebrate the Lord's own service on the Lord's own day.

  • http://www.ebroussard.com/ ebroussard

    Having spent 20 years in the Baptist church and another 20 years in non-denominational churches…Communion has been a monthly “practice” at best. Thanks for commenting, peace to you.

  • Tim

    Eddie,
    Good comments. We, at the church of Christ, observe the “Lord's supper” every Sunday and it is the center piece of the worship service. Jesus commanded this “sharing of his body and blood” prior to His ultimate sacrifice. The examples of the first century church leads us to observe this at least weekly. However, as 1 Corinthians 11:27-29 states, we must be of the proper mind at the time of taking communion. It should not be just tradition, ritual, or common place. We need to remember what He intended it to mean….the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord, and the way to our salvation in our death (to sin), burial (in baptism of His blood), and the resurrection (into a new birth or life). This “communion” should be the center piece of our everyday living, without this there is no purpose for us.

  • http://www.ebroussard.com/ ebroussard

    “should be the center piece of our everyday living” love that…thanks Tim