11 When he had gone back up and had broken the bread and eaten, he talked with them a long while until daybreak, and then left. - Acts 20:11
There is no consensus among scholars since 2000 years in regards to the context and purpose of the breaking of the bread in verse 11, the foundation of the Eucharist for many denominations. Many believe Paul was having a regular meal. Some believe he was taking the Lord's supper. Others believe he was doing both. Others believe the whole church was gathered around Paul but not mentioned (a synecdoche, see quote below from Hicks). Others believe the church already took the Holy communion in verse 7. And so on...
While the text uses the singular “he broke bread and ate,” the singular is a synecdoche where a part stands for the whole. Does Luke really want us to think that Paul broke bread by himself, that he ate alone? I think not. Rather, Paul is the focus of the text–preaching, healing, etc., and consequently he is the lead character in the breaking of bread. But he does not break bread alone or eat alone in the midst of a meeting of the disciples, does he?
If we find out whenever Paul or the whole church was with him to break the bread, it might underscore the importance and the particularity of this meal.
Was Paul alone or with the church during this meal?