Protestant Communion


#1

I grew up protestant and but I never really realized how little significance the Eucharist could be to them until now. My sister went to a Baptist church last week and she said that the communion was pre-packaged. The bread and juice were packaged together in individual servings and she had to just take the plastic off of the top of it to get the wafer and then there was another layer of plastic under it to get the juice. She didn’t even have to get out of her seat. The ushers delivered it to everyone. She was suprised and hesitated. The usher asked if she was saved. She said yes and took one and that was the end of it. I was shocked. What is the significance when the Sacrament is reduced to a pre-packaged snack?:frowning:

Oladare


#2

I will respond to this using the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1400
Ecclesial communities derived from the Reformation and separated from the Catholic Church, “have not preserved the proper reality of the Eucharistic mystery in its fullness, especially because of the absence of the sacrament of Holy Orders.” It is for this reason that, for the Catholic Church, Eucharistic intercommunion with these communities is not possible. However these ecclesial communities, “when they commemorate the Lord’s death and resurrection in the Holy Supper . . . profess that it signifies life in communion with Christ and await his coming in glory.”


#3

**I saw yhis once…In fact, the “elements” of communion were not only pre-packaged, but they were in large bowls outside the sanctuary (worship space). People were invited to simply take their “communion” into the sanctuary with them…This was done…I think…on Easter…When a huge crowd was exptected. They ordinarily pass the grape juice and little crackers around in plates…I was appalled.

CH
**


#4

This is a sad development in the Evangelical world. It disconnects communion all the more from its roots, making of it a mere convention. It’s no wonder so many Evangelical churches have it so seldom.

This puts me in mind of a funny story that happened in an Assemblies of God church I was attending many years ago. The ladies in charge of providing the crackers (they used unsalted crackers for communion) discovered that they were out of them. So, one of the ladies ran quickly to the grocery store to buy another box. To everyone’s horror, she brought back a box of cheese flavored crackers instead of the unsalted ones. It wasn’t funny at the time, but I can’t help but chuckle over it now.

It may be some Evangelical decided to avoid such mistakes and the sloppiness of passing out thimble-sized cups of grape juice by coming up with this pre-packaged communion. I guess utility comes before reverence when communion is seen as nothing more than a “memorial.” If Jesus hadn’t made it a commandment to “do this in remembrance of me,” I believe the practice would have disappeared amongst our Evangelical brethren long ago.


#5

She said yes and took one and that was the end of it. I was shocked. What is the significance when the Sacrament is reduced to a pre-packaged snack?

They are Baptists after all, everything is nearly symbolic or figurative. One day the Crucifixion will be symbolic.


#6

Interesting thought.


#7

I’ve noticed this. My family go to a non-denom and communion is just something they do once a month and of very little significance at all.


#8

Originally Posted by Della
If Jesus hadn’t made it a commandment to “do this in remembrance of me,” I believe the practice would have disappeared amongst our Evangelical brethren long ago.

I don’t doubt that for one moment.


#9

A similar question was asked over at BaptistBoard, and one of the responses was that after the service, what bread and wine were left over was fed to the stray dogs outside…


#10

That sounds anecdotal. But, in a strict sense, why should it bother Catholics if it were true? You don’t believe that the elements used in a Baptist Communion have been transformed into the body and blood of Christ anyway.


#11

A friend of mine (and the fellow who Baptised me) belongs to an Independent Baptist Church. They use unleavened bread and wine rather than crackers and juice, however they only have communion at Passover.
WP


#12

I recall being appalled in a Church of God, many years ago, when an usher passed a cup of grape juice and a cube of bread to my 8 year old daughter - without a single question!


#13

Correct me if I am wrong. I think that the communion in non-catholic church seems to be so insignificant because they do not believe the real presence of our Jesus. They only do it just to remember the Passover.

Thanks!


#14

Depends on the Church. This would be true of many Protestant Churches where the Eucharist is symbolic and done pursuant to Christ’s command. In some of those churches, however, it is still taken pretty seriously. Further, in those Protestant churches that preach the Real Presence in the Eucharist (primarily Anglican, Lutheran and some Methodists), the Eucharist is usually taken very seriously.


#15

Hi,
We use matza’s and grape juice. I think that is fine because matza is unleavened bread and grape juice is still fruit of the vine just not fermented. We have communion once a month and take it very seriously. It is a time of fellow believers coming together as the body of believers to remember what God has done for us. My minister stresses that if we have any unconfessed sin not to take communion. We view communion as a memorial service. As for having it once a month, it really doesnt matter how often you do it. Even the CC only requires it once a year at Easter time. So, I think judging protestants for having communion once a month is wrong. There are no restrictions on how often to take communion,whether it is daily,weekly,monthly or yearly, it is all ok as long as you are a believer in Christ.:thumbsup:


#16

From my experience Methodists are pretty reverent of the sacrament.
WP


#17

I’ve seen both in the Methodist Church, so I’d say it depends on the parish.


#18

Hopefully your sister is not a Catholic, since we Catholics are not allowed to receive their communion, anyway - but if she is a Catholic, at least she knows now why it is a mortal sin.


#19

Thanks, that’s interesting to know.

My minister stresses that if we have any unconfessed sin not to take communion.

How can a Protestant have “unconfessed sin,” since they don’t actually go to Confession? :confused:

Don’t you just go straight to Jesus? So someone who had something on his conscience could just mentally make a prayer and “confess” it right there, couldn’t he?

We view communion as a memorial service. As for having it once a month, it really doesn’t matter how often you do it. Even the CC only requires it once a year at Easter time.

Good point.


#20

You have an unconfessed sin if you have not fallen on your knees and asked God for forgiveness for the sin.
I consider it a good idea to always kneel before the altar and pray for worthiness and forgiveness before recieving Holy Communion.
I don’t believe the Baptists would disagree with that.
WP


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.