The Lord’s Supper as practiced by the first-century church was based on the LAST Supper, which in turn was a Passover meal. All three were patterned after the Roman banquet, a formal reclining meal attended by invitation only and lasting upwards to four hours. It included a first course or the meal proper (known as a deipnon), and the second course or drinking/dessert course (known as a symposium), which included singing, teaching, prayer, reading of Scriptures and letters, ministry of the gifts of the Spirit, etc. As far as we can tell there was no repetition of those familiar institutional words, “this is my body” or “this is my blood.” That did not come about until the second century.
The Lord’s Supper was a REAL SUPPER, likely held on a weekly basis, and was the locus for fellowship and service. It comprised the totality of the worship experience.
To learn more about this topic, read “SUBVERSIVE MEALS: An Analysis of the Lord’s Supper during the first century under Roman Domination” (Wipf and Stock). Now in stock at Amazon. Prime members can one click for free two-day delivery. Also available in Kindle.