We are a small Episcopal Church on the banks of the Rappahannock in Port Royal, Virginia. We acknowledge that we gather on the traditional land of the first people of Port Royal, the Nandtaughtacund, who are still here, and we honor with gratitude the land itself and the life of the Rappahannock Tribe. Our mission statement is to do God’s Will in all that we do.

The Post Communion Prayer

We say the following prayer from page 365 almost every week:

“Eternal God, heavenly Father, you have graciously accepted us as living members of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ, and you have fed us with spiritual food in the Sacrament of his Body and Blood. Send us now into the world in peace, and grant us strength and courage to love and serve you with gladness and singleness of heart; through Christ our Lord. Amen.”

Where does the Post Communion Prayer come from? After Constantine’s conversion to Christianity in the 4th century, the large numbers of people joining the Church led to a need to develop a post communion thanksgiving prayer. . The 1549 Book provides one fixed post communion prayer which is equal in length to several of the Sarum post communion prayers (from the middle ages) joined together The following also may have been a source – “You have fed me with the Precious Body and Blood of Your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Sir Thomas Aquinas

Massey H. Shepherd, Jr., has written of post-communion text “[It is] one of the most remarkable summaries of doctrine to be found in all the formularies of the Prayer Book. It gathers up all the varied meanings of the Holy Communion; thanksgiving, mystery, grace, incorporation into Christ, fellowship in the Church, anticipation of the Kingdom of God. “

The prayer on Page 365 Rite II was written the Rev. Dr. Leo Malania for the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. The emphasis of this prayer is not on the benefits of communion but on the work God calls us to do as we go out into the world. In Rite I we ask God to “assist us with thy grace, that we may continue in that holy fellowship, and do all such good works as thou hast prepared for us to walk in; “ and in Rite II “strength and courage to love and serve you with gladness and singleness of heart.” Malania served as coordinator for Prayer Book revision and Captain Howard Galley as assistant. Galley wrote the BCP Prayer C, the “Star Wars” prayer).