Yeah, I understand it’s where we are and perhaps the alternatives, as in real bread and real juice without plastic and foil, are unacceptable to our health and safety conscious worshippers.
I’ll use them but I don’t have to like them.
The one pictured in my wrinkly octogenarian paw is from the church service yesterday. I didn’t steal it. I picked up two when walking in thinking my wife in the choir would need one. Seems the choir had their own. Call me crazy but I don’t think the church wants to collect the unused ones. I brought it home.
During the service, I couldn’t separate the thin plastic cover and get to the miniscule wafer (it is as thin as a sheet of construction paper and 7/8 inches in diameter). Call me clumsy, inept, or whatever, all I could get was the liquid, a “blend” of real grape juice and something, probably water. It looks right but I call diluted grape juice, fake juice. I made a small opening and sucked the fake juice out at the appropriate moment. I don’t suck crawfish heads and I’d rather not suck this little cup either. No choice. That’s the way it’s done.
I’m not being critical of my church in this. What’s the alternative? Go back to a host of ushers distributing a vast pile of specialty trays with plastic, and open, cups. It can be done for a congregation of 800 but it is considerably more labor intensive. With the prepackaged cups, you take a few boxes and set them out nicely on a table for congregants to pick up on their way in.
It just doesn’t seem right to pick up what represents the body and blood of Jesus and drop it in your pocket until the right moment.
After COVID, will large churches go back to the old way?
All this hyper-sanitation. Does anyone think that these things haven’t already been handled before they are picked up?
Does it distract from the dignified and solemn practice of remembering the body and blood of Jesus to give instructions about how to peel and eat, peel again and suck, and be sure and throw away your trash on the way out? Call me a curmudgeonly contrarian but I conclude that it does.
If I could, I’d find a church of fifty that has a table set with cups filled with juice and small pieces of actual bread. One where worshippers are invited to come forward and take the bread and cup, carry it back to their seats, and remember the Lord there.
Yeah, I know. A century or two ago Baptist churches used a common cup. Good luck with that today. Things change. I get it. I just don’t like this one.
Peel and eat; peel and suck. All for the low price of about twenty cents per cup?
Just watch the expiration date on the box. Even fake juice doesn’t last forever.
I haven’t presided over the serving of The Lord’s Supper but once in the last decade. That was at a Christian Church where I was invited to preach.
If I had my own church, what would I do? Fair question. I may yield temporarily to the prepackaged cups but I’d probably discuss with the church ways to go back to a more dignified and appropriate method for my average sized church.