We very much miss not being able to take Holy Communion together. Next week is the third Sunday of the month— the Sunday we would normally share this sacrament.
We cannot come to table as we used to but we still want to fulfil the command Jesus gave us: “Do this in remembrance of me.” Can technology really be applied to communion?
A Spiritual Event: Personally, I see no reason why we should not broadcast a communion service with church members eating bread and drinking wine in our own homes. Our fellowship as a congregation is no less spiritual and no less real just because we are physically apart.
But are the bread and wine really valid if we are not together in church to consume them? Raymond has not consecrated the elements we will be eating.
There is no magic in the hands of the vicar. Our prayer at every communion service is that the bread and wine will become for us the body and blood of Christ. The Holy Spirit is the one who communicates to us the spiritual benefits as we eat and drink. The basis of these benefits is not the physical presence of the clergy. We rest on the promises of God.
This is a temporary concession in an emergency. We are not making a permanent change for the future.
It is also voluntary. Those who do not wish to participate in the taking of bread and wine will still be part of the service in the fullest sense. Bishop Viv recognises that we are in uncharted
waters. She has initiated a discussion in the diocese as we experiment with different approaches to taking Holy Communion while our churches remain closed.