When my camera blew out of my hand as I was taking a picture on the beach at Martyr’s Bay, I knew it was going to be a very windy day. My best friend and I decided to walk and be blown as we continued our hike, but picture taking was seriously limited.
Hardy women that we are, we braved the wind, gusting up to fifty miles an hour, and rain to walk to the Abbey for the night Communion service. It was a lovely, thoughtful service.
One of the gifts of being on Iona is that pilgrims travel here from all over the world. Still, I was unprepared for the experience of true Communion when the woman next to me turned to serve me the bread, looked into my eyes, and said the words of institution, The Body of Christ given for you, in a language I did not know. We both were stopped in the holy moment in that holy place knowing that Christ was real and present and with us. Our eyes filled with tears. Once again, as she served me the cup with the hands of Christ, The Blood of Christ given for you, in words that I could only comprehend, though completely, in my Spirit, Christ was there.
The words of blessing used at the end of Communion were words prayed at St. Mary’s in worship past. Communion again.
On our hearts and on our houses, THE BLESSING OF GOD.
In our coming and our going, THE PEACE OF GOD.
In our life and our believing, THE LOVE OF GOD.
At our end and new beginning, THE ARMS OF GOD TO WELCOME US AND BRING US HOME.