Love Feastgreenspun.com : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread
I would like to know if there is a special service for holding the Love Feast before the first Sunday. Just what Is the meaning of the Love Feast? I have heard that it the cleaning of the soul before taking Communion on the first Sunday.
-- Anonymous, December 04, 2003
I am no expert on this but I will tell you what I know of the Love Feast. It was held on a night before 1st Sunday (usually Wednesday) by each Class Leader with the members within their class. So the groups were small in the beginning because there were very seldom more than 10 people in a class. The Leader would open of course with prayer and open the meeting for discussion. The discussions were built around any thing or any one who had been offended or ofended someone else in the class and asked to be forgiven or was asked to forgive. Yes it was a cleansing of the soul before taking Communion on 1st Sunday.
Sometimes, it disputes were not resolved, some folks did not take communion of the Sunday. Now I don't know if this was their personal choice or if the Class Leader had a part in this. I am not really sure of that part of the ceremony.
Regular bread and water was used instead of Communion bread and wine. Each member in the class will have a piece of bread and the Class leader would than start by taking a piece of the person next to him (at that time Class Leaders were men), embrace them in a Holy hug and continue until everyone had taken a piece of each other's bread. Then they will each drink the water in their individual cups as a symbol of Jesus blood that purifies and cleanses.
That is just my take on what I can remember. Very few of our churches even know that this ritual is part of our church. For me, it has always meant something very special and I am sorry that we no longer practice this in my church. It is one of those things that we have allowed to be dropped just because. Maybe if we kept with such a tradition, some of our meetings, (be it at a Church, Quarterly, Annual, District and General Conferences) will be less personally heated and more about being about God's business.
Hope this help. God Bless
-- Anonymous, December 05, 2003