“Come to this table not because you must but because you may. Come not because you have all faith but because you have some faith and would like to grow in it. Come because you love the Lord a little and would like to love Him more. Come because He loves you and wants to give you everything. Come because all is ready and we are His body.”
It's my favourite invitation to Communion and it clearly resonates with many members of St Michael’s. It underlines our human fraility, our need for forgiveness and our lack of faith while emphasising the loving welcome of the Lord Jesus who longs for each one of us to come to him in penitence and faith acknowledging our need of his unfailing love.
Receiving Communion is deeply personal – as we take the bread and wine we are invited to remember that Jesus died for us individually. At the same time it is a supremely corporate act – it is with angels and archangels and the whole company of heaven we thank him for dying for us and the loaf of bread is broken and divided to remind us that we all part of His one body.
At St Michael's we are now using ordinary bread at most Communion services as did the first Christians and as we are bid in the Book of Common Prayer. It is a very powerful symbol when the bread is broken to remind us of Our Lord’s body broken for us.
Let me finish on a spiritual note: Communion is a huge joy and privilege. Never take this privilege lightly. We are urged in 1 Corinthians 11 to prepare ourselves before the service. Let’s take that instruction seriously and rejoice at this wonderful opportunity our Lord has given us to remember His saving death.