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None of us are worthy to sit at the table with Jesus, and yet he invites us again and again

CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Remy RemmersAll are welcome at this table. What does that mean? Every Sunday morning, I invite whoever is present to the table. As a called and ordained minister of the Church of Christ, I have the authority to preside over the table. The altar, or the table, is centered at the front of the sanctuary. Here, the bread and the wine are prepared ahead of the service and placed on the altar. They are covered by a cloth until it is time for communion.

When we have communion at the Lutheran church, the section in our rituals is called the Thanksgiving at the Table. Here, I retell God's presence throughout time. Passages from the Old Testament are referenced, explaining how God has always reached out to creation with love, even when we mess up time and time again. Then we get to the words of institution:

In the night in which he was betrayed, our Lord Jesus took bread and gave thanks; broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying: Take and eat; this is my body, given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me.

Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks and gave it for all to drink, saying: This cup is the new covenant in my blood, shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin. Do this for the remembrance of me.

These words, while translated into many languages, have been passed down for generations -- Jesus having his last meal with his friends, knowing that one would betray him, one would deny him and the rest would scatter except for the women who would follow him to the end. The knowledge of what was to come did not stop Jesus from having this meal with them, showing them love, telling them what to do in remembrance of him. Grace is given to them (and to us) time and time again.

This is part of the reason that Lutherans have an open table and say, "All are welcome." None of us are worthy to sit at the table with Jesus, and yet he invites us again and again. If you find yourself missing the bread and wine, know that you are always welcome at our table. Gluten free wafers are available. Wine and grape juice is provided as well.

Remy Remmers is the pastor at Our Savior's Lutheran Church. She can be reached at 541-447-7526.


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