I got this picture Sunday from someone who didn’t have much in the house to grab for Communion. At first, I thought it was pretty funny, but then I thought, “What a great idea!”
One year ago, the whole country was going into shut down mode due to the growing pandemic. As of March 22nd, last year, worship was by Zoom only. For months there were only a handful of us in the sanctuary each Sunday, while a few hundred joined us faithfully online.
One of the initial discussions was around how to do Communion? Presbyterians believe there is mysterious transformation involved in Communion, but that instead of the bread becoming the actual Body of Christ, we are made to be the Body together. We are the Body not because of who we are, but because God chooses to make us the Body. It’s not about the bread, but because Jesus is the Bread. But how is Zoom Communion really Communion? We here at Pine Ridge have decided to leave it up to God to sort out the theological details of virtual communion. I’m sure we can ask forgiveness later if necessary….
Gathering virtually around the Table has raised lots of good questions. What really is Communion? Who and where is the Body when we are all scattered out, connected only by Livestream? What can we learn about Communion by doing it in our homes during these days of mutual isolation? What should you use for Communion? Crackers and juice? Chips and salsa? Waffles and orange juice? How important is it to actually eat something anyway?
I invite you to take this opportunity to explore staples from other places. Could you use rice in the place of bread? Could you use tortillas? Could you bake the bread you use?
When I was a kid at some youth retreat, we had Communion with popcorn and Coke. The point was that whatever you use to symbolize the Body and Blood of Christ doesn’t really matter, because we are the Body together. But someone asked, “Does junk food really represent the true meaning of Communion?” Good question. Could you use something organic or fresh from your garden this summer? Tomatoes? Cucumbers?
“Eucharist” is another word for Communion. It is the Greek which means to “give thanks.” What can you use for Communion that would cause you to give thanks as soon as it hit your tongue?