Bristol Peace Church Peacemeal

Bristol Peace Church: Thoughts on the Peacemeal

Bristol Peace Church meets most weeks, in the homes of the members, for the sharing of news, prayer and bible study; often using a liturgy to frame the meeting. The evening always ends with a meal, which is usually prepared by the host(s) but is sometimes a bring-and share meal – and occasionally even a take-away.

We have eight members, which enables us to sit around a table for the meal. This is an important aspect of the meal, reminding us of Jesus and the disciples at the Last Supper. The physical act of sitting around a table and eating together also signifies the fact that we are at peace with each other.

The shared meal is seen as a Peace Meal. It is a time of listening and talking and sometimes of comfortable and comforting silence. There are times of being serious mixed with times of frivolity! We see this as a sign of a community that respects, values and cherishes each person, providing nourishment both physically and spiritually.

We usually break bread and share wine at the end of the meal, often using words from a liturgy. Words that we find particularly meaningful are from the Didache:

‘Just as this broken bread was scattered upon the mountains and then was gathered together and became one, so may your church be gathered together from the ends of the earth into your kingdom’.

We see the Peace Meal as a time that contributes to the gathering of that church. The Peace Meal is also seen as a continuation of a long tradition, the gathering of believers around a table, starting with the Last Supper and continuing today in so many ways, through family and community meals.

 

The Didache eucharist liturgy quoted in this story is available for you to read, download and use for free on our Liturgies page.

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