Am I allowed to come forward for Communion / the Lord’s Supper / the Eucharist?
All are welcome to come forward to receive God’s gifts “give for you” at the Lord’s Table.
As communicants come forward to receive, each person is invited to stand or kneel at the communion railing near the altar, as is comfortable for you.
When a few people have come forward and are ready to receive the host elements,
- first the pastor will distribute bread (or a gluten-free wafer, if you need/prefer it)
- then a communion assistant will offer a small glass for individual service of wine or grape juice
- next the common cup chalice with wine will be offered (unless you have a glass; do not take a small glass if you would like to receive the common cup chalice)
- the pouring chalice of wine will be served next, and the grape juice is served last
As bread and wine are the most common host elements, recipients who wish to receive gluten-free wafers or grape juice are encouraged to let the servers know of their preference by raising a finger or covering their glass when the pouring chalice with wine is served.
While it can sound complicated at the start, it’s not. You are invited to come and try out communion with us. Our ushers and assistants (and even the person beside you) are helpful in answering any questions, and our pastor will be happy to assist you.
Why Receive Communion?
Lutheran Christians believe that the “real presence” of Christ is received “in, with, and under” the host elements of bread (or gluten-free wafers) and wine (or grape juice). We believe that the real presence of Christ is also received fully in each element, and thus, those who can receive only one or the other of the elements fully receive Christ in the meal. Whether it is a crumb, chunk, or loaf of bread; whether it is a wafer or cracker; whether it is wine or grape juice: in this Holy Meal, we receive Christ’s holy presence with us and we are changed.
Constantly, in our lives, we are bombarded with struggles. Sometimes they are manageable, but sometimes we react in ways that we wish that we did not. With the Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, we are given strength, forgiveness, and renewal of life.
In Lutheran Christianity, we believe that God forgives us directly each and every time that we “repent” (turn and seek forgiveness from God). In the meal around Christ’s table, this forgiveness is declared to us and by receiving the host elements, we are given what we need to face the challenges of our lives again.
Seeking forgiveness is not simply about removing what has already been done; it is also about committing to be different in the future. Through Holy Communion, Christ’s presence gives us all that we need to do so.