When we make space to be present to the moment before us,
When we create intention to notice the surroundings around us,
We are soon reminded of people.
Isn’t that true?
We walk around the grocery store and see a food item that someone especially likes.
We cross an email off our to-do list and remember someone we’d like to check in with later.
We smell a comforting scent and remember the people present in a long-ago memory.
The remembrances of people are around us all the time. This means we are invited into community all the time.
I find myself thinking about the word ‘remember.’ Though we don’t typically think about it this way, in English, the word is literally phrased as ‘member again.’ This is a way to express belonging. In community, we are members of one another. We belong.
And when Jesus shared his very last meal with his closest friends and confidants, he blessed bread before them, and broke it, saying, “Take and eat. This is my body broken for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” He then poured the cup of wine before them and said, “Drink this, all of you. As often as you do so, do this in remembrance of me.”
In the recounting of this moment, the Greek word for ‘remember’ means ‘to make present.’ Jesus is not simply asking disciples to think about him when they eat future meals together. He is asking them to reenact this moment in a way that makes him present.
In this very Sacrament, and
In a life of sacramental living —
noticing, reflecting, contemplating —
people become present to us all the time.
So when we remember them —
as they are membered once more in our thoughts,
and made present to us —
perhaps would be meaningful if we reached out to say hello, making ourselves present too.