The Christian tradition has a special ritual or sacrament whereby a meal of bread and wine/juice is shared among believers. This is a way of remembering the last supper that Jesus shared with his disciples before he died. In doing so, we also remember Jesus’ promise that he is always with us.
This meal is known by a number of different names: Holy Communion, the Lord’s Supper, or the Eucharist (meaning thanksgiving). This is a special ritual that holds great significance for Christians. In some denominations, only Baptised believers or church members are allowed to participate.
The Uniting Church respects these different traditions but chooses to practice what is called an “open table”. This means that even though we recognise that traditionally this meal is understood as a sacrament for those who are Baptised, in the Uniting Church all are invited to participate, and it is up to each individual how they respond.
The Uniting Church believes that Holy Communion is a meal that does not belong to the church. We believe that it is Jesus Christ who invites us to join together around His table. This can be done in a variety of different ways and each church will direct its congregation according to their local practice. But no one will ever be refused communion. If you are unsure of what to do when Holy Communion is celebrated, talk to a minister or one of the church leaders and ask for their advice.