Should we withhold the giving of wine in Holy Communion?

Thomas Renz writes: Decisions that had to be made in response to the current pandemic previously prompted me to write briefly on the history of withholding the cup, on arguments against it, on the Communion of the sick, on the doctrines of transubstantiation and concomitance, and on God’s real presence, pondering the implications for celebrating … Continue Reading

Individual Cups at Holy Communion: Practical Guidance

Andrew Atherstone writes: As part of the Church of England’s Covid Recovery, the practice of Holy Communion remains a pressing concern, especially as the latest lockdown ends and parishes prepare for Christmas. At November’s General Synod, seven written questions to the House of Bishops and the Legal Advisory Commission focused on this topic, though once again … Continue Reading

How do inscriptions help us read the New Testament?

Dr Clint Burnett is Lecturer of New Testament at Johnson University in Knoxville, Tennessee USA, and has just published Studying the NT Through Inscriptions: An Introduction (Hendrickson, 2020), and I had previously heard him present some of his research at the annual Society of Biblical Literature (SBL) conference. I asked him about his research, and why inscriptions … Continue Reading

Receiving Communion in individual cups: round two

Andrew Atherstone writes: As the Church of England undertakes its “Covid Recovery” planning, the question of individual cups at Holy Communion continues to gather pace. As is widely known, the House of Bishops have taken refuge behind a 2011 paper from the Legal Advisory Commission (LAC) which summarily pronounced individual cups to be “contrary to … Continue Reading

Local ministry in the time of pandemic

The imposition of social distancing and then ‘lockdown’, including the closing of church buildings as places of gathering for worship, has changed the shape of ministry for everyone. But what exactly does that mean for the local church? And in amongst the challenges, are there signs of hope? James Blandford-Baker is vicar of Histon and … Continue Reading

(How) can we celebrate Holy Communion as ‘online’ church?

Last weekend there was some anxiety, a few woes, but much elation at the first experience of being ‘online church’. There was most anxiety about technical challenges, but many reported a positive experience—and higher numbers attracted to online participation than usually attended in person. The situation this weekend offers new challenges: with the ‘lockdown’ measures … Continue Reading