Today in church, I really was touched by the sermon of our aged priest..It was about being like little children and forgetting and forgiving immediately after a fight. He asked us to remember all those whom we hadn't forgiven and forgive them. I felt the whole process very liberating and shedding all and any anger against anybody or even against myself, I proceeded towards the alter for recieving the eucharist(the body and blood of christ). I noticed the young priest who was giving away the eucharist,looking suspiciously at a lady three places in front of me in line as she moved away after recieving the eucharist. Probably she didnt recieve it in the proper way and the priest suspected that she was not a christian. He asked another man to bring her back. He was distracted and had anger writ on his face. I had noticed the woman who had taken the eucharist and passed by me, she had looked blessed to have recieved the eucharist. The priest was looking away at where the lady had gone as he gave the eucharist to the two in front of me. He was still looking away distracted as he kept me waiting for the eucharist. I felt upset as he had managed to kill all my feelings out of the blessedness of the act that I was to perform in recieving the eucharist! Quite involuntaritly I opened my palms which had been joined in prayer and posed a questioning "what!!" with it at the priest!Sorry!!! Mercifully I guess the priest was too busy looking away to notice me.
After the eucharist the priest went towards the back to where the woman was standing. I saw the agressive expression on his face as he passed by. I looked back to see him question them. From the gestures and expressions in the answers I guessed they were christians all right, probably 'reasonably new converts' which could have led to some mistake or whatever, that had made the priest doubt that she may not be christian.
I know that the church forbids non christians from recieving the eucharist.. but really for me personally whoever comes to church with reverence is a christian. Ofcourse the priests have to be alert with their duties...
But I really wish they didnt have this duty to do which could distract them from the duty to give 100% of their prayerful presence to those who had come with reverence to recieve the eucharist- the body and blood of Christ- from his hands.
And I also wish that those standing in line to recieve it don't take it upon themselves to question those alongside in line whether they are christian or not(I have witnessed it happen too -on a christmas morning -and in that case too, the one questioned was a christian, a regular infact!).
Those standing for eucharist and the one giving, in my opinion, have to be totally looking into their own selves, to see how much of a christian they themselves are as they prepare to give or recieve the body and blood of christ.