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The Communion Service from the Book of Common Prayer
With Select Readings from the Writings of the Rev. F. D. Maurice, M.A.

Edited by the Right Rev. John William Colenso, D.D.
Lord Bishop of Natal.

London: Macmillan and Co., 1874.

Transcribed by Charles Wohlers, 2006.


WE must believe that a man is not merely made a living soul; but that he is joined to One, Who has been made to him, and to the whole body of which he is a member, a quickening Spirit. Is there a man or woman, of whom we dare not say, "Christ died for thee?" And, if not, is there a man or woman, to whom we may not proclaim, "The Spirit of Him, Who raised up Christ from the dead, is seeking to raise thee out of this natural death,--to quicken all the energies of thy soul, all the energies of thy body,--to make thee a new creature, with a soul like His soul, with a body like His glorious Body?"

To each man we say this, "Christ died for thee." Each man has need to hear it for himself, to believe it for himself. But the language" which speaks to him as an individual, claims him as the member of a family. He is eating the one bread, which is to sustain all as well as himself; he is drinking of the Divine Universal Life. He has no property in Christ, which all around him have not,--which all, who have the same flesh and blood, the same death, have not equally. The Father, Who raised Him from the dead, has in Him quickened the whole race. Though we receive each for himself, the gift contains a promise, and a prophecy, for the whole Church and for mankind.

Therefore, so soon as we have received this bread and wine, we say, "Our Father," and we bless God that we, who have duly received these holy mysteries, have been fed with the precious Body and Blood of His Son, and are owned as very members incorporate in His mystical Body, which is the company of all faithful people, that we are heirs through hope of a wider, an enduring inheritance--the inheritance of mankind. And as we say, "Glory to God in the highest, Peace on Earth, Good will to Men,"--as we invoke the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world,--as we declare that He only is Holy, He only is the Lord, Who with the Holy Spirit is most High in the glory of God the Father,--we confess a unity which is beneath all other unity, a deep eternal mystery of Reconciliation and Peace, which shall overcome the mystery of Division and Evil, once and for ever.--Sermons on the Prayer Book, p. 304.

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