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COMMUNION RITUAL

PREAMBLE

WHAT A PRIVILEGE TO SUP AT THE LORD’S TABLE.

WE DO NOT COME TO THIS TABLE BECAUSE WE ARE GOOD, BUT BECAUSE GOD IS TRULY GOOD TO HIS CHILDREN.

WE DO NOT COME TO THIS TABLE BECAUSE WE HAVE NOT SINNED, BUT RATHER BECAUSE WE HAVE BEEN FORGIVEN OF OUR SINS.

WE DO NOT COME TO THIS TABLE BECAUSE WE ARE STRONG, BUT BECAUSE HIS STRENGTH IS MADE PERFECT IN OUR WEAKNESS.

THE COMMUNION MEAL IS THE MEMORIAL OF THE CRUCIFIED AND RISEN LORD. IT IS A SACRED SIGN OF HIS SACRIFICE, ACCOMPLISHED ONCE AND FOR ALL ON THE CROSS AND STILL OPERATIVE TODAY ON BEHALF OF ALL HUMANKIND. MOREOVER, IT IS NOT ONLY A CALLING TO MIND OF WHAT IS PAST AND PRESENT, BUT ALSO AN EFFECTIVE PROCLAMATION OF GOD’S PROMISES AND A FORETASTE OF HIS FINAL KINGDOM.

LET US COME IN GRATITUDE AND IN WONDER, TO OFFER OURSELVES IN WORSHIP. LET US COME JOYFULLY, YET SOLEMNLY TO THIS GRACIOUS MEAL AND OFFER GOD THE SACRIFICE OF PRAISE.

APOSTLES’ CREED

I BELIEVE IN GOD, THE FATHER ALMIGHTY, MAKER OF HEAVEN AND EARTH.

AND IN JESUS CHRIST, HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, OUR LORD;

WHO WAS CONCEIVED BY THE HOLY GHOST, BORN OF VIRGIN MARY;

SUFFERED UNDER PONTIUS PILATE, WAS CRUCIFIED, DEAD, AND BURIED; HE DESCENDED INTO HELL;

THE THIRD DAY HE ROSE AGAIN FROM THE DEAD;

HE ASCENDED INTO HEAVEN, AND SITTETH ON THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD, THE FATHER ALMIGHTY;

FROM THENCE HE SHALL COME TO JUDGE THE QUICK AND THE DEAD.

I BELIEVE IN THE HOLY GHOST;

THE HOLY, UNIVERSAL CHURCH; THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE SAINTS;

THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS;

THE RESURRECTION OF THE BODY;

AND THE LIFE EVERLASTING. AMEN

CONGREGATIONAL PRAYER OF CONFESSION

MOST MERCIFUL GOD, WE CONFESS THAT WE HAVE SINNED AGAINST YOU, IN THOUGHTS, IN WORDS, AND IN DEEDS. WE HAVE SINNED IN WHAT WE HAVE DONE AND IN WHAT WE HAVE LEFT UNDONE. WE ARE TRULY SORRY AND HUMBLY REPENT OF OUR SINS. HAVE MERCY ON US AND FORGIVE US; THAT WE MAY DELIGHT IN YOUR WILL, AND WALK IN YOUR WAY.

GRANT THAT WE MAY HONESTLY EXAMINE OURSELVES WITH THE LIGHT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

MOST MERCIFUL GOD, FROM WHOM NO SECRETS CAN BE HIDDEN, AND TO WHOM ALL HEARTS ARE OPEN AND ALL DESIRES KNOWN, PLEASE CLEANSE US, NOW, FROM ALL UNRIGHTEOUSNESS, THAT WE MAY PARTAKE WORTHILY OF THIS MEAL. THIS PRAYER WE ASK IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD AND SAVIOR. AMEN.

PRAYER OF CONSECRATION OF VESSELS AND ELEMENTS

LORD, YOU TAKE MUNDANE THINGS AND DEPLOY THEM IN A SACRED WAY.

LORD, YOU TAKE ORDINARY ITEMS AND USE THEM TO DISPLAY YOUR GLORY.

LORD, YOU TAKE COMMON ARTIFACTS AND CONVEY YOUR ETERNAL LOVE FOR US.

LORD, YOU TAKE THE HANDS OF YOUR HUMBLE SERVANTS AND USE THEM TO DO YOUR SACRED WILL.

TAKE NOW, O LORD, THE COMMON INGREDIENTS OF MANY KITCHENS, CONTAINED IN COMMON HOUSEHOLD VESSELS, HELD BY HOLY HANDS AND CONSECRATE THEM FOR THE SACRED PURPOSE OF HOLY COMMUNION.

JUST AS YOU CONVERT SINNERS INTO SAINTS, CONSECRATE AND CONVERT THESE KITCHEN UTENSILS INTO SACRED VESSELS.

CONVERT THE BREAD AND LIBATIONS INTO SACRED ELEMENTS.

YOU MEET US THROUGH YOUR WORD!

YOU MEET US THROUGH THE UNCTION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT!

PLEASE MEET US NOW, IN OUR HOMES AND IN THIS SANCTUARY THROUGH THE SACRED ELEMENTS OF COMMUNION.

IN JESUS’ NAME A GREAT AMEN!

PRAYER FOR THE BREAD

HOLY GOD, YOU FILL THE HUNGRY WITH GOOD THINGS, SO WE BLESS YOU AND THANK YOU FOR THIS BREAD. IN IT WE REMEMBER THE BROKEN BODY OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOR, JESUS CHRIST. IN IT WE ALSO REMEMBER OUR OWN BROKENNESS AND PRAY THAT YOU WILL COME AND FILL US WITH YOUR HEALING POWER. AS HIS BODY WAS BROKEN, SO MAY THE BONDS OF OUR SIN BE BROKEN. AS HE WAS RAISED FROM DEATH, SO MAY WE BE RAISED, DAILY, TO THE NEWNESS OF LIFE BY THE POWER OF HIM, IN WHOM WE LIVE, MOVE AND HAVE OUR BEING.  WE PRAISE YOUR NAME! AMEN!

PRAYER FOR THE CUP

HOLY GOD, OUR SOULS MAGNIFY YOU. WE MAGNIFY YOU INDEED. WE PRAY FOR THIS CUP AS WE REMEMBER THE SHED BLOOD OF JESUS. WE PRAY THAT YOU WILL CONTINUE TO LOOK UPON US WITH FAVOR. AS WE LIFT THIS CUP AND TASTE THE SWEETNESS OF ITS CONTENT, OUR SPIRITS REJOICE IN YOU. HELP US TO DRINK WITH GRATITUDE, KNOWING THAT EACH TIME WE COME TO THIS TABLE, WE ARE INVITED TO COMMIT ANEW OUR HEARTS AND OUR LIVES TO CHRISTIAN SERVICE. WE PRAISE YOUR NAME! AMEN!

RECAPITULATION

BY GOD’S GRACE OUR SOULS HAVE BEEN FED, BY HIS BODY AND THE BLOOD WHICH WAS SHED. TOO SOON WE RISE, THE SYMBOLS PASSING. TOO SOON THE FEAST IS ENDED. TOO SOON THE BREAD IS CONSUMED; TOO SOON THE WINE IS SPENT. THE FEAST THOUGH NOT THE LOVE IS ENDED. GONE ARE THE SYMBOLS OF HIS BODY. GONE ARE THE EMBLEMS OF HIS BLOOD. BUT HIS PRESENCE LINGERS NEAR. HIS PRESENCE LINGERS HERE. HIS PRESENCE WILL ABIDE WITH US FOREVER. AMEN.

COPYRIGHT © 2006 BY JAMES C. WARD

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

    "God's grace and mercy has allowed us to be the greatest church in the universe." ~Pastor Ward

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    Antioch-Lithonia Missionary Baptist Church
    2152 Rock Chapel Rd. | Lithonia, GA 30058 | PH: (770) 482-1277FAX:  (770) 482-1584