This is God’s meal not ours. Whatever you believe or don’t believe, you are welcome to receive.
We Welcome You to Communion
For decades, St. Mark’s has welcomed all to take communion.
In a community where we often disagree, “open communion” is one of the areas on which we most often agree. It symbolizes our beliefs that God welcomes all to communion, and it connects us to each other.
We gather in a circle around our central altar. All remain in the circle, even after they have received the bread and wine, until all have received. Many of us take the opportunity to connect silently with others in the circle.
How To Receive Communion
When there’s room in the circle, come join it. Our tradition is to make room for as many as possible. We don’t have ushers to guide you to the altar.
The Priest will say “the body of Christ, the bread of heaven” as they offer the bread.
If you need a gluten-free wafer, please let anyone serving know.
Then someone will offer the cup of wine by saying “the blood of Christ, the cup of salvation.” We only drink wine from the cup. We have learned, surprisingly, that it is more hygienic to sip than to dip the bread.
We believe that communion is complete if you eat the bread. So, if you prefer not to receive the wine, simply cross your arms in front of your chest.
Many of us say “amen” before eating the bread and drinking the wine.
If you prefer to receive a blessing, or have a child too young to receive communion, indicate that to the server by crossing your arms over your chest.
Remain standing in the circle until the Priest says, “Go in peace.” Then return to your seat.
If you have mobility issues and would like to receive communion, tell someone and they will tell the Priest who will come to you. We want to include everyone.
What is the Eucharist?
The Eucharist (YOO-ka-rist), or Communion, is the centerpiece of our Sunday worship. It is one of the most important and ancient of all Christian rituals.
Down through the centuries, Christians have explained the power of the Eucharist in many different ways – all are welcome here. When we bless bread and wine according to Jesus’ command, some believe they become his body and his blood. Others believe it creates a connection with God and with others as the Body of Christ. Indeed, the term “Communion” comes from the concept that through taking the bread and drinking the wine we “commune” (become one) with Christ and we become one with each other as siblings in Christ.
“Eucharist” means “giving thanks” in Ancient Greek and during the ritual we give thanks to God for Jesus and each other.