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Weekly e-Gram for members and friends of Dublin Community Church

October 9, 2009


A number of years ago I read about an interesting way to observe World Communion Sunday. Communion is always sacred and evocative. I find a difference in the “feel” of communion on say, Maundy Thursday of Holy Week and that of World Communion Sunday, which we observed this past Sunday.

Holy Week Communion is about pausing totally and experiencing the depth of Jesus’ sacrifice and the events of the Upper Room, Good Friday and Easter Morning. Maundy Thursday is quiet.

Last Sunday marked World Communion Sunday on the first Sunday of October. I sense that this is a joyful moment. Consider that maybe one billion Christians might actually have partaken of the bread and cup. One billion might actually have been in the midst of liturgy and song. One billion might have reflected on the offering of Christ’s body and blood AND on the fact that one billion might have done so within a 24-hour period.

World Communion Sunday is no ordinary Sunday by any means. With that in mind, a few years ago I had a colleague suggest that we put one of those automatic bread-baking appliances in the corner of the sanctuary. We then timed it so that the bread would be rising, baking and emitting that wonderful aroma of fresh-baked bread during the service. There is nothing that smells better. Since I see World Communion Sunday as joyful, the addition of an olfactory component to this day seemed like a great idea.

So I spoke to a woman in the church who had the bread-making/baking appliance. She got it all ready and we plugged it in and at the appropriate time we had the smell of… burning bread. It seems she got just a few drops of bread dough on the heating element. There was no threat to the church or frankly, to that batch of bread. The smell of burning bread was from but a piece of dough the size of a dime.

Since then, I have resisted such theatrics though I still think it’s a good idea when it works. So we communed last Sunday. We came forward for intinction and then circled the sanctuary and sang and prayed. And I’m pleased to report that it was all done without the aroma of burning bread.

Peace, Rev. Bob Tussing

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