Minister’s Letter – Anglicans, Catholics, and Holy Communion, Part 5.
Holy Communion is also an opportunity for thanksgiving and praise to God, as well as a way of marking our fellowship with one another.
Holy Communion should include an element of thanksgiving and praise. For some time now we have said some words from Ephesians 1 as a means of offering praise together after we have shared Communion. Nothing could be more appropriate than to offer praise and thanks to God after we have received the benefits of Christ’s death. This is why in some churches Communion is called The Eucharist, from the Greek word for thanksgiving.
Finally, Communion (as the name suggests) is a means of demonstrating the fellowship we have as God’s church. Paul reminds the Corinthians that we all share from the one loaf (1 Cor 10:17), and he reprimands them for sharing communion in a way that was excluding others (1 Cor 11:17-34). Here at Waitara, we wait to eat and drink all together as a means of marking our unity.
I hope this five-part series has enabled a clearer understanding, not only of the differences between Catholics and Anglicans, but also of what we ourselves are doing when we share in this important action as a church.