There is No Good Reason Not to Offer the Lord’s Supper Every Sunday: Do you agree?
I’ve been pondering the perplexing phenomenon of Lutheran congregations not offering the Lord’s Supper every Sunday, along with the quirky, “Service of Communion without Communion” the infamous “page 5″ service of The Lutheran Hymnal, or as some put it wryly, “the dry mass.”
In The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod we’ve been passing resolution after resolution, “encouraging” congregations to offer the Lord’s Supper every Sunday for years now, but we still have far too many congregations that celebrate the Lord’s Supper every-other-Sunday, at best, or even less frequently, at worse.
Holy Scripture indicates that the Lord’s Supper was offered to God’s people each Lord’s Day (Acts 2:42; 20:7; 1 Cor. 11:20,33). The Lutheran Confessions declare in our churches Mass is celebrated every Sunday and on other festivals, when the Sacrament is offered to those who wish for it after they have been examined and absolved (Augsburg Confession XXIV, para.34). And Dr Luther in his Large Catechism writes, Indeed, the very words, “as often as you do it”, implies that we should do it often. And they were added because Christ wishes the Sacrament to be free, not bound to special times like the Passover (Large Catechism, Fifth Part, para.47).
Here’s a great resource to get you started. I am convinced that if a congregation prayerfully studies this book together, the remaining objections to communion every Sunday can only finally be attributed to willful, selfish, ignorance, and can on longer be used as a valid reason not to offer the Lord’s Supper at each Divine Service in our congregations. The point I always make with people who protest at the thought of a congregation offering the Sacrament every Sunday that it is “too often” or “too Roman Catholic” or too…whatever, is that while they may choose not to receive the Sacrament every Sunday, they have no right to deny this gift to others simply because they don’t want it.
When we consider the enormous blessings that we receive in the Lord’s Supper, that we are receiving from Christ Himself, His very body and blood for forgiveness, life and salvation, how could we not want to receive this gift at every Divine Service?
Simply put, I can not think of one single good reason why the Lord’s Supper is not offered in our congregations every Sunday. Can you? If your congregation does not offer the Lord’s Supper every Sunday, why doesn’t it? And what can you do about it?