Poured Out For All
The past few years have brought many changes to our small, Mont Vernon church. One of those changes was a new worship leader -- me (Abbie Velez). 😁 As a seasoned church musician, I wasn't expecting to step behind the pulpit, but the Call was undeniable, and I have found light and purpose on this journey, each new step bringing me so much joy!
The latest step in this process was for me to become licensed by the UCC Hillsborough Association to serve Communion for our church and its members. That license went through yesterday! And how fortunate we are, because this Sunday is WORLD COMMUNION SUNDAY 🌎
After many months of missing the Sacrament of Communion in our worship, this Sunday we will gather together to break bread and pour the cup, just as so many millions around the world will do the same. Join us!
*below you will find an essay I wrote for my Licensure on my Theology of the Sacrament.
*Can you find the references to most of my favorite Communion hymns? 🎶
Come, share the Lord. Take this bread, so simply begun as seed and then seedling, fed by the Earth, gathered and ground by human hands; fired... then broken so that all might share. Fill your empty hands with the cup. Cradle it. Smell the sweet, purple bouquet. Lift it up to the Lord and give thanks for the grace of God’s forgiveness, God’s mercy, God’s love. One bread. One body. One cup, poured out for all.
This is a summary of what Communion means to me. Short sentences for its simplicity. Flowery words for the beauty of the moment. Earthy elements that dip into the sensory, connecting what it means to be human to the glory of the Divine. As a church, we gather together to take part in a Sacrament that’s been observed by billions across the millennia of time. Doesn't that just blow your mind! This rite, holy in ritual and in remembrance, is a moment where we can connect as Christians, grounded in God’s promise as we feed the Hungry Heart.
Jesus asked his disciples, his friends, to find a place where they could share the Passover meal, to celebrate the liberation of God’s people from oppression. Peter and John found a space exactly as Jesus told them they would, and there they prepared a simple meal. The company gathered, some heavy with sadness, others flooded by nerves, but they made time for one another. This would be their last meal together before the promise was fulfilled. God’s Kingdom Come–on Earth as it is in Heaven. Jesus broke the bread and offered thanks. He took the cup and poured out promise. And then he commanded us to do the same: ‘in memory of me’.
So this is what we do. We create space for everyone who wants it. We thank our Creator for what we’ve been given, and for the work of Christ on the Cross. We remember God’s promise, and through this ritual we come together, as Jesus’ disciples came together in the Upper Room, their table set for all, as our table is open to all: friend and foe, filled and empty, with room even for the betrayer.
Within this holy moment, we can steep in the presence of God. Within this shared meal, we can entwine with the past yet turn our faces towards the future. Through this simple act of broken bread and a wine-filled cup, we can envision the light of Christ as it illuminates the world, hoping to see God's Kin-dom in the Now. Now. Now.