World Communion Sunday – This Sunday and Always

World Communion Sunday – This Sunday and Always

This Sunday, we will celebrate communion with the added remembrance of World Communion Sunday, celebrated on the first Sunday in October each year.

I think the implications of World Communion Sunday should invigorate our remembrance of Christ’s sacrifice. Christ didn’t come just for a small subset of people in the United States who look and talk like us, but he came to usher in God’s holy reign among all of us, around the world. And each culture remembers Christ in their own language, their own form.

The truth of World Communion Sunday can be found as all over the world, people gather this Sunday to break bread and share the cup of salvation. And while they all remember the same Person and the same sacrifice, they will speak Spanish, English, French, Russian, Mandarin, Farsi, Arabic, German, Hindi, Bengali, Portuguese, and so many more. God, whose essence reaches beyond the limits of our minds, can be found hovering among people groups all over the world, and even multiple cultures in our melting pot of the United States.

Just up the road, churches will celebrate communion in various languages and formats. Some will tear bread from a loaf and dip it in a cup. Some will receive a wafer and a sip from a chalice. Some, like us, will receive the bread and cup in small servings, handed to us by our servant leaders, the deacons. Some will partake of wine, others of a newer vintage. 😉 But we will all be remembering this same holy understanding: God came to be among us, chose to suffer alongside us, taught us important truths about how we should live our lives, and ultimately was killed and overcame death with new life so that we all might live more fully, from now until forever.

I hope that we always remember that the table of God’s banquet is wide and long. It isn’t made up of all “respectable” people – it’s made up of misfits and people in various stages of a journey (Matthew 22:1-10). Jesus welcomes all – outcasts, sinners, the poor, the rich, the hated, and the loved. And it is this communion we celebrate this Sunday and every time we gather over the Lord’s Table.

I hope you will join us for our service of worship and communion on World Communion Sunday, and I hope its significance reminds us that our own table should be wide and long, and that if Christ is making space, we also should make space for the last and the least and all those who would come seeking new life.

Our future as a community of faith depends on embracing this truth of sacrifice and hope in new, innovative, and profoundly different ways in the coming years. Just as the table of Christ adapts to our cultures, living into all forms of love and communion around the world, so we too must adapt to love our community in new ways as we seek to host a heavenly banquet of all people, whatever their circumstances, in our own worship space.

I leave you with a poem that accompanies our worship art this week, written by the artist, Jan Richardson, to remind us how important it is that Christ’s table is wide, and ours should be too.


And the table
will be wide.
And the welcome
will be wide.
And the arms
will open wide
to gather us in.
And our hearts
will open wide
to receive.


And we will come
as children who trust
there is enough.
And we will come
unhindered and free.
And our aching
will be met
with bread.
And our sorrow
will be met
with wine.


And we will open our hands
to the feast
without shame.
And we will turn
toward each other
without fear.
And we will give up
our appetite
for despair.
And we will taste
and know
of delight.


And we will become bread
for a hungering world.
And we will become drink
for those who thirst.
And the blessed
will become the blessing.
And everywhere
will be the feast.

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