Communion Wars

There are several Eucharistic Ministers at our church. Some of them have conflicting convictions as to what constitutes appropriate Communion etiquette and for that manner, appropriate Mass etiquette.

One person in particular is anal-retentive about the rules as spelled on in Canon Law, word for word. Another person is one who prefers the spirit of the law as it allows for appropriate judgment when necessary. One helps the priest (when asked) pour the wine into the chalices (a Canon Law no-no); the other gets annoyed. One writes letters to the Bishop complaining about rules violations; the other complains about the person writing the letters.

When both serve Communion at the same Mass, there’s this sort of non-verbal tension that takes place. A little body english here, an evil eye there. But they both believe in the same God, the same religion, and the same parish. Interesting. One need only have a conversation with these two to understand why people from completely different religions might have trouble getting along. Or Shiites and Sunnis, for that matter.

We have a broad mix of parishioners. Some are very fundamentalist, some are very liberal and some just don’t show up. The fundamentalists complain about every change that’s occurred since Vatican II; the liberals complain that not enough is being done to make the church more inclusive, as Vatican II intended.

How come we don’t review our churches the way we review, say, restaurants? Wouldn’t that be helpful, especially for those who have strayed away from their church because it just didn’t provide them with what they needed?

Church Reviews. Something to collectively blog about.


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