Ideas and Inspiration for World Communion Sunday
Let these ideas inspire you to highlight World Communion Sunday in new ways this year!
- Inspired by a partnership with a food distribution ministry in Zimbabwe, one congregation was asked to wear or carry something that represented another country or culture as they symbolically joined their Christian sisters and brothers around the world in The Lord's Supper.
- A microphone was placed at the front of the sanctuary so that when worshippers come forward to receive Communion, they could speak aloud the name of the country that had significance for them.
- A variety of breads were placed on and around the altar, representing not only the wonderful variety of people in the world, but also the variety of ways breads are baked in different cultures.
- Another church placed several automatic bread bakers around the sanctuary, timed so that the scent of baking bread would fill the air during worship.
- Some churches use a projection system in the sanctuary, showing pictures of Christians from all over the world engaged in ministry and worship.
- If there is wireless connection in the sanctuary, Skype during worship with a congregation in another country.
- Find several people in your congregation or community whose cultural heritage is different from most of the rest of the congregation (and whose first language isn’t English) and have them read a passage of Scripture, pray the Lord’s Prayer, or lead part or all of the Communion liturgy in their primary language. They could also be invited to share personal reflections on how they live out their discipleship in light of their cultural heritage and traditions.
- Drape pieces of ethnic cloth on the altar and around the sanctuary.
- And don’t forget – World Communion Sunday is one of the six special offering Sundays in our denomination. Our special offerings on World Communion Sunday provide “leadership scholarships” for national & international UMC graduate students; undergraduate “ethnic scholarships” for national and international UMC students within the U.S.; and “ethnic in-service training (non-degree)” scholarships for UMC racial- and ethnic students from around the world. In other words, we provide financial support for the education of United Methodist student leaders who would otherwise struggle to find the finances they need. We are given an opportunity to support education, just as John Wesley did, and just as Methodists have always done!
If you have other World Communion worship and ministry ideas and experiences, please share them in the comments section below.
Adapted from an article by Tamra Williams, Superintendent of the Albion District of the West Michigan Conference