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Communion 2009

First Communion

Originally scheduled for October 25

In those denominations which practice infant baptism or christening, a child’s first communion service is a major event. It is customary for the girls, for example, to wear a white dress, and it’s not unknown to have a party afterwards to celebrate the occasion. Indeed, anyone’s first communion service is a major event in life. But there are several items available for sale which might not seem quite as normal as a white dress:

·         For the girls, a matching set of soap and perfume for the occasion.

·         For the post-communion party, a band, of course – one that specializes in rock music for first communion parties.

·         Need something cheaper? How about a first communion mouse pad?

·         Or a specially engraved pen and bookmark set?

·         A commemorative tie tack for the boys is available.

·         And finally, for those who have all of these already, a personalized, extra large size first communion chocolate bar.

 

Our Lord, in instituting Communion at the Last Supper, did not see fit to prescribe any of these. Indeed, what he instituted had a very different set of virtues:

·         First, he implemented Communion in simplicity. Nothing elaborate is required, merely bread and wine. It is something that any church can afford.

·         The elements of communion are rather common, in both senses. No one sniffs the cork to check the vintage; bread and wine are easily available.

·         These elements are simple, but also symbolic. In this we meet the body and blood of Christ. Simple does not exclude the profound.

It does not matter your status in life. Rich or poor, gifted with good taste or blessed with a sense of the wacky, Communion knows no fashion sense nor required income. It is a gift, to remind us of the greatest gift ever given mankind – the body and blood of Christ, given for our sins.

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