While there has been much upheaval in the world this week, as I pray for the world I have been finding my thoughts returning to the Eucharist: the simple bread and wine that promise union and communion both now and in the hereafter.
It is fitting. The world displays examples of brokenness, yet the Eucharist itself is a symbol of brokenness. It is the broken and pained body of Jesus that we are holding up, that we are coming to, that we are coming into as we access the elements of Christ present in our midst.
In and through the brokenness of the world, in and through the brokenness of our lives, we are invited to a feast of heavenly proportions. We are invited to remember our own brokenness in order that we might re-member ourselves as the community of Christ-followers. It is through our own intentionality that we access the body of Christ: and I don't mean just physically.
As the church, we are ever-mindful of the need to ensure physical accessibility to the Eucharist: reserved parking spaces for the lesser mobile (even on weekdays!), communion stations that avoid stairs, larger print prayer books.
However, I emphasize the spiritual access as just as important, the Eucharist encourages us on a deep and profound spiritual journey, simultaneously inward and outward. The liturgy reflects our baptismal vows and encourages us to continually discern our shared commitment to God and one another. This holy reconciliation is the intentional focus on overcoming personal differences to be the body of Christ. To spiritually access this body means we choose to be the best version of ourselves, not just in the church building, but in everything we do. It means we take seriously the confession, the peace, and the communion: making relationships right with ourselves, our neighbours, and our God.
We know that these relationships can always be improved, and part of our responsibility as Christians is to strive towards that reconciliation. It's not always easy, but it is that intentionality which provides us true and humble access to the Body of Christ. For those who find the differences too great to overcome, I pray there is comfort in knowing that by the grace of God the invitation to access is eternal.
May we all live in the knowledge that the brokenness of this world is not stronger than the healing and reconciling love of the Risen Christ.
The Body of Christ: broken for you.
The Body of Christ: seeking wholeness through you.
The Body of Christ: accessible to you. And to you. And to you....