The first Sunday of every month is our community’s traditional time to celebrate the Lord’s Table. It probably looks like any other communion celebration, but it does not sound like any other I have been a part of. As a church leadership team we found that there were a growing number of people who could not participate in communion due to gluten allergies. One of our resourceful volunteers found gluten-free “communion wafers”.
I love these things. They crunch like it’s nobody’s business and it is BRILLIANT!
Why? Quite simply when we take the “bread” and eat you know you are doing it with everyone else. Our Gymnasanctatorium has painfully bad acoustics and so when 150 or so people go crunching into the gluten-free wafer it ignites a sound that you feel in your chest. You know that you are not alone. You know that you are with others and they are with you. It is an audible reminder that sharing the Lord’s Supper is something you do in community.
We live in a day where community is a buzzword as opposed to a reality. We have air conditioning, TV, and attached garages, all of which are designed to keep us apart from other people in the name of “comfort”. It is comfortable because when I, the chief of sinners, interact with other people I make mistakes and I say things that hurt them. Isolation protects me from this. It is comfortable.
The communion table is supposed to draw us out from isolation into communion with one another. It is a time for us to be caught up in the spiritual mystery and grace of the supper where we remember Jesus and what he has done for us. It is a time for us to celebrate together the beauty and magnitude of the grace we have in Jesus. It is to shape us and mold us and change our identity and help us remember anew the reality of our being in-Christ together.
A gluten-free wafer — The sound of community and communion.