Thoughts From Pastor Gordon - September 2019

Thoughts From Pastor Gordon - September 2019

The first Sunday of the month we regularly observe as Communion Sunday. As we gather together for worship, it’s a way to remember the love and grace of God through Christ in our lives. But the Lord’s Supper is a sacrament that reminds us not of a worship service but of a meal — a sacred meal — that Jesus observed with his disciples and friends the week he died. By doing this regularly, we are teaching and reminding our hearts and minds to be in relationship with God daily.

Sacrament is a fancy word with multiple definitions. Sacrament is a noun in the Christian church, a religious ceremony or ritual regarded as imparting divine grace.

The Church of England prayer book describes it as “an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace.”

There are differing beliefs about what constitutes a sacrament. In the United Methodist Church, along with other mainline Protestant churches, the sacraments are those expressions of God’s grace in which Christ himself participated: baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Some denominations recognize other rituals as sacraments, such as confirmation, marriage, and ordination.

A sacrament may be defined as a ceremony or ritual, but how those sacraments are practiced may be different in different congregations and faith traditions. The Sacrament of Baptism can be a full dunk, a pouring of water or a sprinkling of water. In the United Methodist Church, the definitive factor is that God’s grace is enacted by this ritual, and it is only necessary once in someone’s life no matter her or his age at the time of baptism.

The Sacrament of Holy Communion may be taken from a communal cup, from individual cups or by intinction, meaning the bread is dipped in the cup before being eaten. Communion may be done repeatedly — and should be. Jesus said, “Every time you drink [eat] it, do this to remember me” (1 Corinthians 11:25b). Christ’s sacrifice for us was for every day of our lives.

Question of the day: What helps you remember your faith each day?


Sunday, September 8, 2019, Oberlin United Methodist Church will celebrate a blessing of seed at the 10:45 AM worship service. If you would like to have a sample of seed for fall planting blessed, you are asked to bring your seed in a snack-size zip lock bag to the service. All are welcome to participate in the blessing of the seed at the worship service.