During October and November, beginning October 14, I will post weekly reflections on Holy Communion using Mike Graves’ Table Talk: Rethinking Communion and Community. The back cover reflects: “if we could travel back to [the] earliest Christian gatherings, we would realize we are not just two thousand years removed; we are light years removed from how they ate when gathered because eating was why they gathered in the first place, a kind of first-century dinner party.”
I will offer brief reflections in each post and engage with Graves’ work to explore the necessity of Holy Communion in Christian worship. An overwhelming majority of the church through an overwhelming majority of its history has gathered at the table every week. And, as a colleague and friend who teaches worship has said many times, “If your congregation isn’t gathering at Christ’s table every week, you are outside of orthodox Christianity.” How can we have civil conversations around the frequency of Communion, particularly with those who either crave weekly communion because it is considered essential to worship and with those oppose weekly communion because it is considered too special to be celebrated weekly? How can we re-engage our worship with the life-giving essence of Christ’s table in creative ways?
Graves’ book will form the launch pad for our conversation on this important topic. I hope you read along, or at least join the reflecting and consider implications for your context.