Is communion simply a ritual of remembrance?

Holy Communion includes a profound act of remembrance that recalls the last supper Jesus had with his disciples. But it is more than just a ritual of remembering. It is primarily an act through which our connection with God, each other and our life of ministry in the world is nourished and strengthened.

This Holy Mystery describes what we believe and practice in the sacrament: “Holy Communion is remembrance, commemoration, and memorial, but this remembrance is much more than simply intellectual recalling. ‘Do this in remembrance of me’ (Luke 22:19; 1 Corinthians 11:24-25) is anamnesis (the biblical Greek word). This dynamic action becomes re-presentation of past gracious acts of God in the present, so powerfully as to make them truly present now. Christ is risen and is alive here and now, not just remembered for what was done in the past.”

In the ritual, the prayer of Great Thanksgiving intentionally rehearses the entirety of God’s saving acts in history from creation to God’s covenant with Israel, through Jesus’ life, death and resurrection. And in this prayer, we seek the pouring out of the Holy Spirit upon us and the gifts of bread and wine we bring.

Read more at umc.org: Is communion simply a ritual of remembrance?