Life at St. Paul’s has largely — but not completely — returned to normal in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Among the remaining casualties of pandemic has been the administration of the Blood of Christ at Holy Communion. Experts caution that COVID-19 is with us for the long haul, which leaves churches around world wondering whether or how to return to receiving the wine. That’s a special challenge in church traditions like the Episcopal Church, where a common Cup of Salvation is a significant sign of our unity in Jesus Christ.
Some congregations, including St. Paul’s, haven’t yet restored the Blood of Christ for the congregation at all. Others have restored the common cup. Some practice “intinction,” or dipping the bread into the wine. Still others have adopted the practice of some Protestant denominations by serving the wine in individual small glasses served in trays designed to hold the glasses apart from each other. In the Episcopal Church, the common cup is traditional, but not mandated. That method was used at our recent diocesan convention. Different dioceses have different policies about how the Blood of Christ may be administered. In the Diocese of Milwaukee, we are free to make the decision that best serves our congregation.
This Sunday at 9, the Interim Rector Forum will resume in the Community Room, and this question will be front and center. Some parishioners have very strong feelings about this issue, and all are encouraged to come and participate. Others have little or no opinion. And that’s fine, too. Either way, we hope you’ll join us Sunday morning at 9 as we discussion our options.