Rev. Katheryn King
Associate rector, Grace Episcopal Church
As early as 150 C.E. (Christian Era) Justin, the martyr, in writing an explanation of Christian worship to the Roman authorities, described the celebration of Holy Communion pretty much as we celebrate today. At the end of the description, he notes that members take the Lord’s Supper from the assembly to those who were unable to be present. He certainly meant the sick and those who were home bound. Perhaps these included those whose work kept them away (Sunday was a work day back then, too).
This is our ancient tradition: to love and cherish and keep connected with those members, their families and friends of our community who cannot be with us on Saturday/Sunday/Wednesday Eucharist Worship.
When illness, or any other situation keeps you from Worship, a Lay Eucharistic Visitor (LEV) is prepared, trained and licensed by the Diocese of Western Michigan, to bring the Sacrament of Holy Communion to you, ‘which is the sign of our common life together’.
Receiving Holy Communion at home or in a facility, even at work, can be brief, if you are not feeling well. But normally, it consists of some readings, prayers, silence or conversation. Sharing in Holy Communion is an important part of our life together because each person is a part of our worshiping community, and a member of the body of Christ.Some material adapted from The Rev. D. Foy Christopherson.