Archive for July 30, 2009

The Anglican Church of England, much like the Roman Catholic Church worldwide, like to share. I know, sweet, right?

Aerobic exercises during mass (“Stand,” “sit,””kneel”… “roll over”), pawing out of the same hands for the Eucharist and sipping out of the same cup (or chalice, depending on how shee-shee your particular house of worship wants to be).

Church. For when you really want to take cover.

Church. For when you really want to take cover.

Sound familiar? Well, now we can add communicable disease to the collection, thanks to this story from CNN.

The archbishops of Canterbury and York are recommending that churches stop sharing the chalice at communion over swine flu fears, the Church of England said Thursday. The archbishops wrote a letter to all Church of England bishops with the recommendation. It follows government advice not to share “common vessels” for food or drink so as not to spread the virus.

The “common vessel” in question in typically reminiscent of the mug Indiana Jones went trolling during his Holy Grail excursion, made nice with the Knights Templar, fought a gaggle of Nazis and bumped into James Bond. Not Roger Moore or the current blue-eyed dude. The other guy.

Anywhoo. The same golden chalice is given to the every believer standing in line waiting to take a sip of the wine. Sure, the cleric wipes it every time, but does that single cloth once-over does a lot for some slob with herpes and meningitis?

And, now we need to worry about folk walking around with swine flu. Nice. As if eternal damnation wasn’t enough to worry about, we have the dreaded H1N1.

“The Department of Health have recently advised us that ‘in a pandemic it makes good sense to take precautions to limit the spread of disease by not sharing common vessels for food and drink,'” the archbishops write in the letter.

Yeah, I would say that’s a good call. As if the dude walking up to the Bishop with the surgical mask draped across his grill wasn’t enough warning. So, lather up in Purell folks. Your next communion really could be your last supper.

(A little too dramatic? Man, I need to stop watching the news.)

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