Table Graces by Gary A. Fritz

Table Graces

Gary A. Fritz on the Blessings of Serving Communion to the Saints

Although my father wasn't a pastor, I grew up with the ever-present knowledge that I was a "PK" of sorts. For me, that meant that dad was a principal, in this case, of a Lutheran school. Though that didn't carry the moral burden of being a parson's child, I certainly was raised and grew up under the scrutiny of our entire congregation, a large parish of nearly 2,000 souls. Consequently, going to church was non-negotiable, an unspoken duty that was fulfilled without question, argument, or any form of dissent. And being a compliant child, it never even crossed my mind to consider otherwise.

Thus, I attended church. A lot. By the time I was confirmed, I had undoubtedly sat through over 800 services, with roughly half of them culminating with the Sacrament of the Altar. Though I was a believer and cannot recall being without faith at any time during my growing years, I was never a fan of Communion Sundays. Inevitably, we would sing at least three extra hymns or slog our way through all fifteen stanzas of "I Come, O Savior, to Thy Table" (#315 in The Lutheran Hymnal). I suspect that "Lord, may Thy body and Thy blood / Be for my soul the highest good" just might be my deathbed mantra as I breathe my last. All told, not a bad final thought with which to enter glory.

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