Communion And Capitalism
Where does the body of Christ come from? For about 80% of the Christians in the U.S.A., the answer is the Cavanagh Company of Greenville, Rhode Island. We have so many questions inspired by this interesting article:
Do wheat farmers or grape growers ever think about the fact that some of their produce could be transubstantiated?
Does it matter if Communion wafers are made by human hands or by machines?
How often should a church offer Communion?
Would it be disrespectful if a crucifix became covered with flour dust from baking Communion bread?
Is it okay for one large company to use free market methods to put small Communion bakeries out of business?
Should baking Communion bread be thought of as a business at all, or it it actually a calling?
Does Jesus want people to take Communion even if they’re allergic to wheat or grapes?
Is it possible for one Communion bakery’s product to be “superior” to another?
If Communion bread is actually transubstantiated into the body of Christ, does leaving a few crumbs matter?
Which is more sacrilegious, eating Communion straight out of the plastic sacks it comes in, or the fact that it comes in plastic sacks?
A final observation from the article mention above: ”During church services, wafers are engulfed in enough religious imagery and liturgical context to discourage the realization among congregants that what is now the body of Christ was produced in a factory, bought and sold in a contentious, secular marketplace, and traded hands repeatedly among truck operators and postal workers who had no idea what they were handling—merely ‘freight as freight,’ according to Cavanagh’s shipper—all before arriving on the altar. Maybe the not-yet-realized body of Christ is not so different from that box of ‘Jesus Is My Homeboy’ T-shirts riding next to it.”