As my second and final year at BTSR came to a close in 1998 those who were graduating held a special chapel service. Those leading the service asked that those attending were to find someone who was special to them and go up and serve each other communion. Two by two folk went up and received communion. As the crowd wound down my best friend and I looked at each other, and without words said oh yeah. We went forward took communion, then with our backs to the "congregation" gave each other a hey Ace, then found our seat. (A hey Ace, recall the SNL cartoon Ace and Gary the Ambigiously Gay Duo, after the two did a good deed Ace would grab Gary's behind and say nice hey Ace, Ace would do the same to Gary.) Some found our action quite hilarious, upon finding our seat the preaching professor (now the dean at Gardner-Webb Divinity School) laughingly suggested that we get into a worship class.
In some ways I agreed with him. I love the give and take of liturgy and order of worship. I collect hymnals, special service plans and worship bulletins like churches collect coffee mugs. This Sunday was World Communion Sunday.
We have experimented with different forms of communion, the regular sit down and be served, intinction, and the form from yesterday: folk come up, tear a piece of bread, then take a cup from the tray, sit down and then we all take together. It was okay. Some liked it, some didnt.
My problem concerns the very act of communion, that it be a communal event and not strictly a private act. I am not sure any of the methods, either the ones here or elsewhere commuincate that. I feel the only way would be to have an actual meal, communal and festive. Need for a Worship class indeed.