The evangelical church I worship with does not celebrate the sacrament of Communion often (it pains me as someone who does not believe that it is just a symbol), but…

If the eucharist is the central sign of our unity, the Pauline passages about discerning the body are agonizingly indicting when I consider how little I have done — including through prayer — for my brothers and sisters under persecution. By taking the Lord’s body and blood, we proclaim death to ourselves and unity with our Savior, and are thus united to all who have done the same throughout history (and those who are doing so with us in the room) — and whatever we have done to the least of these, we have done to our Lord. By failing to discern the body, we harm not only them through neglect, but ourselves because we — through our Lord — are one.

In other words, the eucharist — among other things — leads us to actually participate in the communion of the saints that we confess in the creed(s). And, I confess, I am not a very good participant.

Lord have mercy. Christ have mercy.

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