Bread, Wine, and Grace- Look, See, Pray

Jesus invites the disciples to share familiar things that carry new and deeper meaning. At the Last Supper, he and his friends gathered to share a ritual meal: bread and wine were part of the Jewish rite. Now Jesus adds fulfilment to the ancient words and symbols: the bread becomes a symbol of the Body of Christ, and the wine represents the blood of Christ that will be spilled on the Cross.

We may call it Holy Communion, or the Eucharist, or Mass (depending on our understanding and traditions). Theologians have written ENORMOUS quantities of books to explain the significance of the Last Supper… I’m not going to do that. I’m a simpler soul, offering fewer words- but with a profound gratitude to all Jesus has done.

In Buckfast Abbey, Devon, the chapel has a glass wall depicting Jesus inviting the worshipper to the Table. It is beautiful and profoundly affects those who attend. I have tried to capture the essence and emotion in the lyrics of a song. It begins with the invitation to “Come, eat and drink” and then describes the impact and meaning of the sacramental meal. I hope the words need no further comment from me- and that you can use them as a prayer and meditation this Easter. Peace, grace, and joy to you in Jesus’ Name.

Come, take the Bread; come taste the Wine;
Come and eat the Supper of the Lord.
Sin is here forgiven,
Joy replaces shame;
Sharing in the goodness of the Lord.
Come, take the Bread; come taste the Wine;
Come and eat the Supper of the Lord.

Now break the Bread; now lift the Cup;
Let us share the Supper of our Lord.
Grace is freely given,
Faith re-born in Christ;
Walking in the mercy of our God.

(c) Richard Starling, 2023

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