Over the past several years I have had the joy of administering a sacrament in the Church called the Eucharist or Holy Communion.
Maybe it is because of the fancy word Eucharist or the purity invoked when we call something "holy" but adults, for the most part, are funny when it comes to teaching kids "how to take communion". Mainly there is a strong reverence that is attempted to be transmitted from the adult to the child. But as children are not that keen on reverence and can "say the darndest things" communion with kids is something to behold. Mainly because the theology a child has at communion is more profound than most adult's understanding of communion.
Here is some cool stuff kids teach me about communion based on things that have happened to me:
- Run down the aisle. It is okay to run down the aisle for communion. In fact shouldn't we all be running to feast with Christ? Next time, don't walk to communion - run.
- Take communion with a stuffed animal. This should be acceptable, as long as the stuff animal is served communion as well. Kids understand that everyone is welcomed to the table. Human and teddy bear alike.
- Drink every drop. It is critical that every drop of grape juice and morsel of bread is consumed at communion. Who cares is people are waiting behind you to move back to their pews, you do not leave that table until you have been able to take ever last moment you can with Christ..
- Ask for a "big piece". Why settle for just a little bit of Christ? Don't we all want a "big piece" of Christ?
- Dunk the whole piece into the cup. If you get to dip the bread into the juice, soak that bread and be sure to no worry about drips or stains (see points 3 and 4 for justification).
- Seek out the leftovers. The bread of Life is too good to discard in the trash or fed to the birds. That is why we eat all the bread after worship.
- Being shy is okay. Kids understand that it is an honor to be at the table of God and they do not demand a place but know that it is a treat to be there. Being shy to kids is like being humble to adults. Humility at the table of God? Great idea.
- Laugh. Partaking in the banquet of God is a joyful event! Smile, laugh and if you need to, put a rubber crocodile on your head and make the pastor laugh with you.
- Express thanks. One thumbs up at the meal is something, but two thumbs up is great.
- Save some for later. Putting bread into your pocket seems like a reasonable way to take Christ into the world.
Thank you for reading and for commenting on this little post. Needless to say I have never had this volume of response to anything that I have ever written. The number of people I read who shared their own lesson they have learned from children have been inspiring and smile inducing. Thank you.
Also thank you to everyone who commented on the grammatical errors. I need to be better at editing posts. And, the irony is not lost on me as today is National Proofreading Day.
Finally, may you all have a Holy Lent and may Christ continue to embody us all to Be the Change.