As a member of the Altar Guild I have the opportunity to make the bread for the Eucharist, or Communion, or the Lord's Supper as I learned it growing up.
I'm making the bread for December, which means all of Advent and Christmas.
Interesting to think about the Eucharist while awaiting the Coming Lord. This is one thing I love so much about Liturgical worship, it is non-linear. Time is played with during the year. Yes, we follow the year and passion of Jesus. But we always center our worship, temporaliy, on the Eucharist, the Jesus Meal, as N.T. Wright calls it.
During the Eucharist as the story of the Last Supper, or was it the first(?), is told, Jesus says:Do this in rememberence of me. But the original Greek uses the word animnesis which means remember again, pretty much rememberence but it's more. Language is born in culture, so this word animnesis means more than recollection, more than a psychic souvenir.
Amimnesis is a greek word of a Jewish notion, it means to recall in the grandest sense. Recall in the way the Jews recall the Passover. At Passover the Exodus is retold in the first person, we, us. At Passover the meal is for the freed Hebrews, right there at the meal. Animnesis is about collapsing the artificial bonds of time to call the past to the present, the present to the past and wrap it all in the promise of God's future.
When we celebrate Eucharist, we are with Jesus and his disciples, and they are with us. There, at the Table, the Kingdom is Come.
Here's what St. John Chrysostom says: "Remembering, therefore, this command of the Saviour [i.e., to eat and drink in remembrance of him] and all that came to pass for our sake, the cross, the tomb, the resurrection on the third day, the ascension into heaven, the enthronement at the right hand of the Father and the second, glorious coming..." This is the anemnisis from the Divine Liturgy.
And here's a rather dry definition from the Episcopal dictionary:
Anamnesis:This memorial prayer of remembrance recalls for the worshiping community past events in their tradition of faith that are formative for their identity and self-understanding. The prayers of anamnesis in the various eucharistic prayers emphasize and make present the saving events of Jesus' death and resurrection.