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Is it acceptable to have communion outside of the church?



    
    

Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

Community answers are sorted based on votes. The higher the vote, the further up an answer is.

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Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
Communion services, also known as the Lord's Supper, are usually held in churches during the worship services. For the early church, however, worship services were in homes. The church in Jerusalem...

July 01 2013 2 responses Vote Up Share Report


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Cimg1043 Don Whitley Husband, father, grandpa and a Christian.
What is the church? Is it the building where Christians come together or is it the Christians themselves? I believe it to be the latter, so where Christians come together as the church that is the church and not the place. 
The early Christians did meet in homes which is fine and so is it fine to meet in parks, on a hillside or at an available room in a school which some do. Example of the Lord's Supper see 1Cor 11:17-34. Where I attend church services, we take it on the first day of every week and we have example in scripture that is what the early church did. Acts 20:7. I would add that we do this because it is the most convenient time when we meet as a church. However, Christ didn't give us a specific day that we are to remember this memorial and observe this service. He established it on a Thursday (?) night with his disciples (apostles) Matthew 26:26.

October 18 2013 1 response Vote Up Share Report


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Mini Ezekiel Kimosop - Pastor & Bible Scholar
The Lord's Table is one of the two ordinances that Jesus commanded his church to observe, the other being baptism of believers who come into saving knowledge of Christ. The Lord's Table is a commemoration of his saving grace and finished works at Calvary. It should only be celebrated by those who have partaken of his body and blood through a living faith in Christ. 

This essentially implies that it will be meaningless and may even be a sacrilege if the Table is celebrated by non believers or persons whose walk in Christ is not sound. The guidelines for this ordinance are given by Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 11:17-34. Jesus had issued the command in Luke 22:14ff. From Paul's teaching it is evident that the Lord's Table should be celebrated in the assembly of the believers. 

This is not therefore restricted to a church hall but wherever God's people are assembled in fellowship. It is a solemn event that brings honor to Christ and brings to remembrance his sacrificial death and atoning grace. Before partaking of the Table, every believer must examining their standing in the Lord and seek repentance of anything that may bring dishonor to the Him. They should not just keep away from the Table as some often do but seek to reconcile with the Lord in every dimension of their spiritual walk. 

Churches have established traditions on how the Table should be administered. Some insist that it should be served by a licensed minister or church elder. Even though Scripture is silent about who should administer it, believers should approach the Table with honor and deportment that glorifies God and as often as they assemble in fellowship. 

Those who cannot attend the assembly but being members of the fellowship should receive the sacraments too. Whether it is celebrated in the church service or under a special and exclusive gathering of believers will remain a decision of the specific assembly.

October 19 2013 4 responses Vote Up Share Report


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Stringio Vincent Mercado Supporter Skeptic turned believer, Catholic, father of 3
For Catholics:

You are at the wedding of a beloved family member or friend, which is taking place at a Lutheran church. You gladly accepted the invitation to celebrate this happy day with the bride and groom. But then there is a call to come to the table of the Lord’s Supper, to receive communion. This is the awkward moment you knew was coming. Can you, and should you, a practicing Catholic, accept the invitation?

According to the Code of Canon Law, receiving communion in a Protestant church is generally not permissible. According to canon 844, “Catholic ministers may licitly administer the sacraments to Catholic members of the Christian faithful only and, likewise, the latter may licitly receive the sacraments only from Catholic ministers.” The key term here is licit. If a Catholic receives communion from a Protestant minister, it is generally considered “illicit” or unlawful.

The reason for the Catholic Church’s general rule against sharing in the Eucharist with other churches is that a person can only be in full communion with one church. As a Catholic, the core of one’s union with Christ is union with the church. The center of this union lies in the reception of the sacrament of the Eucharist during Mass, which is both a confession and embodiment of unity with the Roman Catholic Church.

But canon 844 includes an exception to the rule “whenever necessity requires or general spiritual advantage suggests, and provided that the danger of error or indifferentism is avoided.”

The Second Vatican Council’s Decree on Ecumenism said that, as a general rule, common worship and eucharistic and other sacramental sharing should “signify the unity of the church.” But it acknowledges that such sharing can also be seen as advancing unity. In fact, according to the decree, “the gaining of a needed grace sometimes commends” it.

Still, within the confines of canon law, the exceptions to the rule are rather limited, and receiving communion from a Lutheran pastor during a wedding would normally be seen as “illicit” for Catholic wedding guests. At the same time, some Catholics would like to, and do, receive communion on these rare occasions.

These Catholics, after a careful examination of their conscience, find compelling reasons to “gain a needed grace” by receiving communion in a Protestant church. And it is also true that eucharistic sharing has occurred at the highest levels of the church. Even Jesus occasionally broke the religious law of his day, though he did so to fulfill the “spirit” of the law.

So it is possible that one could follow Jesus’ lead. In our example a compelling reason might be to demonstrate one’s deep love and commitment to nurturing the relationship of the newly married couple. Intercommunion could be a “yes” to God by witnessing to God’s presence in the marriage and committing to God’s work of salvation in their lives.

In the end, this may be fulfilling the “spirit” of canon law while going against the letter.

This article appeared in the October 2011 issue of U.S. Catholic (Vol. 76, No. 10, page 46).

October 19 2013 0 responses Vote Up Share Report


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Mini Carlos Molina
I'm going to keep my answer short and simple. It's impossible to have communion outside of church because once you've been saved you became part of the body of Christ which is the church. So, everywhere you go the church goes because you are the church. The building you may go to on Wednesdays/Sundays is just a building without the people. You are the church; have communion wherever you wish as long as you're doing it with a pure heart and clearly understand the importance/sacredness of it.

December 06 2014 2 responses Vote Up Share Report


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Mini Grant Abbott Child of Father, Follower of Son, Student of Spirit
I believe, and so does the church I attend, that communion may be celebrated wherever and whenever Christians (Jesus is their personal savior and Lord) meet to worship and encourage one another in the faith. 

I believe that e-bible is a great way to answer our questions so we can grow in our knowledge and understanding of what the bible has to say about our faith. However, it is also a great opportunity to learn from each other the practical ways to put our faith into action. So my answer will share my personal experience of communion outside the formal corporate gatherings of the church I attend. 

Weekly I gather with a small group of Christian men in our house church.
Once a month we celebrate communion together. We fast all day long (liquids only), break our fast with a common meal prepared by the host, celebrate communion together, and have an extended time of prayer - for our own needs, the needs of our small group, and the needs of our church, city and world.

We often have a communion meditation, to enrich our understanding of what communion means, before partaking together. We will read such passages as: Matthew 26 & 27 for the Passion of Our Lord, Exodus 12 to learn about the First Passover, Hebrews 9 & 10 to learn about Christ the Perfect Sacrifice, and John 6 to be reminded that Jesus is the bread of life.

At other times we will meditate on the names that are used to describe who Jesus is from scripture - based on a book called The Names of Jesus. Following our meditation we will have a simple communion service. We use a loaf of artisan bread which we tear into pieces. We offer both grape juice and wine so each person can choose what is right for them. The really special part is that we take turns serving the elements to each other as we speak the sacred words.

Following is the simple service we use:
LEADER
Our Lord Jesus Christ has ordained this supper in remembrance of his sacrifice on our behalf. He has atoned for our sins and given us eternal life. As we serve one another, may we partake of these elements with a clear conscience and a grateful heart.
PARTICIPANT
______________ take and eat. This broken bread is a symbol of the body of our Lord Jesus Christ which was sacrificed for you. [After all have been served, then all partake together.]
______________ take and drink. This fruit of the vine is a symbol of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ which was shed for you for the forgiveness of your sins. [After all have been served, all partake together].
LEADER
By partaking of this meal we are announcing the Lord's death until he comes again in glory to judge the earth and reign as King forever. Let us remember that Jesus is the bread of our spiritual life and our daily communion with him will nourish our faith and strengthen our service. Let us remember that Jesus's blood cleanses us from all sin and our daily confession to him will keep our relationship pure and holy. Go in peace and serve the Lord with a cheerful heart. Amen.

All our small group members would testify that our communion time together is one of those "God Moments" when our feelings align with our beliefs - Christ is in us and we are in Christ. Our prayers that follow are filled with faith and passion for the needs of the body of Christ and for everyone who needs Christ as the personal Savior and Lord. This is one of the wonders that makes the Christian faith so special.

September 26 2015 3 responses Vote Up Share Report


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Open uri20130511 11776 1xe65rn Pattyann Oloughlin. I'M Blessed to be a Child Of God.Mother of 3 Boys,loving sis
We (Children of Our Father God,saved through Jesus our Lord) are One with Jesus. We are the Church>.We come together in Agreement,(when 2 0r 3 agree it is so) In a Home,Building,Where Ever We come TOGETHER,Gathered as One in the Body of Jesus Christ all Knowing through The Holy Spirit, Worship And Thanksgiving Our One Lord~~Amen (simple..Lets not make it about the Word Church or Building) Amen

February 23 2016 1 response Vote Up Share Report


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Mini Brian Ansell Retired school teacher, now sell homemprovements i
Jesus did as there were no churches! Churches are not buildings, churches meet in buildings!

February 22 2016 0 responses Vote Up Share Report


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Unnamed JOYS K.SAMUEL
While Jesus celebrating the Passover with his Disciples in a well arranged upper room, he gave the command: "to do it in remembrance of me" There were only male participants (Disciples) I think. It was celebrated among close associates of Jesus Christ only, and it was an evening time, most probably on a Thursday, and as part of a Passover celebration with the sumptuous supper or during that, Jesus gave such instruction to follow, Instruction was given to his Disciples only. It was not a Synagogue or a Worship place according to Jewish custom, but they were all Jewish people. 

Later, in Acts, we see that whenever believers of Jesus Christ came together with their meals they did the breaking of bread. Then in Acts 20:7 on the first day of the week where the believers came together they did it. 

I think later since the Corinthian Believers took it lightly, the Apostle Paul through his 1st Epistle to the Corinthians Chapter 11 gave proper instruction to the believers. That stands as the Manual for conducting or celebrating the Lord's supper in a proper and worthy manner. 

Then believers started to observe it with due respect in places of gathering where ever they came together with one accord. I think there were some Apostles/Elders were present in those all places and Male and female participants/believers were there. 

We do not see any timing restriction on this or any specific place for doing it. They did it in Houses or wherever the believers came together to worship the Lord with one accord. So definitely it is to be celebrated among close believers only, as part of their gathering together to Worship the Lord with due reverence and devotion. 

So it is not to be conducted or it is not acceptable to conduct anywhere in an unworthy manner, where the purpose of the meeting is something else than worship the Lord. Otherwise with due respect, if few believers together decide to observe it in a worthy manner, other than from the regular places of gathering together, I think there is no problem. I think the Church means the Assembling together of believers, not the building where they might meet.

September 06 2017 0 responses Vote Up Share Report


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