This blog post was written by a woman I’ve come to admire and hold onto nearly every word she writes. Author of the inspiring and controversial book, “A Year of Biblical Womanhood,” Rachel Held Evans calls the Church to be who She was designed to be and identifies many of the holes in the faith we’re taught from the pulpit, but does it with gentleness and wit.
In this particular post she states,
“A few months ago, I was invited to serve communion at a church in San Diego that included quite a few LGBT Christians in its membership.
A lot of things happened in that service that would make some of the leaders in my evangelical religious community very angry: a woman serving the bread and the wine, a lesbian couple partaking of the elements with their baby daughter in tow, a gay man embracing me in a big bear hug and telling me that it was the first time in twenty years he felt worthy to come to the Table.
In that moment—the one with the big bear hug—I knew what my Sunday school teachers would say. They would say that this man was most certainly not worthy to come to the Table, that I was most certainly not worthy to serve, and that daring to participate in this endeavor would surely take me one step closer to “everlasting fire.”
“The body of Christ, broken for you,” I said anyway.
“The blood of Christ, shed for you,” I said anyway.
“The body of Christ, broken for you,” he said anyway.
“The blood of Christ, shed for you, he said anyway.
As we embraced, I knew in a way that I cannot put into words that sharing communion with this man was the right thing to do, that it was an act of bravery and grace for both of us—together unworthy, together worthy, brother and sister, in the mystery of the Eucharist.
So when the thought of my Sunday school teachers’ disapproval crossed my mind, the only words to surface to my lips were, “All right, then, I’ll go to hell.”
Perhaps grace, like the Bible, was never meant to be “sivilized” anyway.