My husband and I are empty nesters, so when the invitation came from our Worship Pastor to help with Christmas morning service allowing the younger members of worship team to stay home with their families, we jumped at the opportunity.
Don, my husband is a vocalist like no other, and I can say this as I have done a fair amount of studio work as a back up singer myself and the congregants in our church love to hear him sing. So he was to sing and I to play the piano. After the worship set was finished and the short message pronounced we were to have communion.
During the prayer at the end of the sermon I tip toed up the steps to the piano and awaited the 'Amen'. As soon as I heard it I began to play my own version of 'Lo! How a Rose Ere Blooming'. Our church passes out the elements to everyone at their seats and then all partake together. When everyone had been served the pastor made a special announcement with regards to the wafer. We have a physician in our congregation who seems to put all who come to him with food allergies on a cleanse, then add foods back one at a time to isolate the culprit. That being said, many of our members are now gluten free, "Our elder board has made a decision that will make things easier for the gluten free members who have not been taking communion. So if you passed on the wafer we will wait for you to be served. You see, we are now a gluten free congregation." (Really?) I giggled to myself as I continued to play the music softly.
When the time came to take the wafer no one had thought to tell everyone the effects of the rice wafer. The moment when everyone put the wafers in their mouths and bit down there was a collosal crunching all over the sanctuary. The pastor lowered his head and cupped one hand over his mouth and I simply continued to play and looked in the other direction, my shoulders moving up and down as I laughed.
In the car on the way home I was looking straight ahead at the road in front of us and said, "Loud communion today, hon. Don't you think?" He said, "Man! Loud doesn't cover it." And we both guffawed as we thought about the rice krispie treat communion we had just experienced. I wondered if Santa liked rice krispie treats and thought about leaving them out next Christmas Eve instead of the usual shortbreads we typically leave. But that's another story for another day.
Fast forward two Sundays: Pastor is back to serve another Communion. Except this time he warns people ahead of time about the massive crispy crunching sound of Christmas Day. When the elements were passed by the ushers and we slipped the wafers into our mouths I couldn't help but peruse the sanctuary and watch people to see how the chewing would commence this time. It was funny to watch everyone deliberately try not to chew loudly. Sort of like not making noise when eating potato chips.
Live and learn! But seriously, if you should find yourself in Woodland Park, Colorado some fine Sunday morning, looking for a nice place to worship, head on over to Woodland Park Community Church (ask anybody...they will know where it is) and maybe you, too, can be a part of Gluten Free Communion. Crunch! Crunch! Crunch!