after the lights are out.  giving elisha a final bedtime snuggle.

me:  what do you think we should name the baby?

elisha:  jesus.

me: hmmm

elisha:  did jesus give us juice or wine for the lord’s supper?

me:  (seriously?)  umm…wine.

elisha:  why we have juice?

me:  good question.  (at this point i figured i’d use big terms and hope he’d lose interest)  even before official prohibition, america became a bit hung-up on drinking and no one fought the good fight to keep wine as an accepted part of the lord’s supper.

elisha:  why?

me:  i’ll look up the details.  nighty night.


20 minutes and a google search later:

from a christianity today article:

Leaders of the 18th-century “evangelical revival” in Britain and America, though concerned about the immoderate use of alcohol, did not see wine, cider, and beer as alcoholic in the same way as distilled spirits (such as gin and brandy). However, in the 19th century, temperance became “teetotalism” or “total abstinence,” moving all alcohol (wine included) into the list of forbidden beverages. Many began to question why a beverage considered dangerous to drink was still used on the Communion table.

Motivated by these arguments, Protestant churchgoers and clergy sought a way to make unfermented grape juice. An American Methodist dentist, Thomas Bramwell Welch, and his son Charles were the first to succeed in this on a large scale. Charles Welch was a skilled marketer, and “Welch’s grape juice” became a popular beverage among total abstainers and the replacement for fermented wine on most American Protestant Communion tables (except in Lutheran and Episcopal churches).

and of course the individual cups that resulted as a fear of germs were made so as not to look like whiskey shot glasses.  but my favorite tidbit gleaned from the article?

…some marketers to evangelical churches have developed disposable individual Communion cups which contain both wafer and grape juice in separate hermetically sealed compartments.

to me this brings to mind handi-snacks.


5 thoughts on “conversation

  1. heh. the big vocab thing is going to backfire on you pretty soon when he gets the hang of all those words.
    and, at our church, we have 2 cups to dip bread (torn from a community loaf) in, one with juice and the other with wine… because pregnant women can’t have it, goes the rationale. pretty silly, if you ask me.

  2. Katie, NO WAY! What great questions he has! Little stinkin’ smarty!
    Love your response. Wish we lived closer, btw.
    And PLEASE let us know in advance if you choose to name the baby Jesus. I DEFINITELY want to get some things embroidered to tell the world. 🙂

  3. so cute!

    I have a friend that took communion from a little disposable cup and it sort of ruined the effect for her. “Never has the distribution of the body and the blood been more efficient.” Makes me love my small churches! And the big churches I’ve been too that still make the effort to make communion more personal.

  4. abbie – the juice glass for pregnant women? how paranoid american 😉

    kelly – at least we live a little closer now, right? even after living in miami for a while and coming across latins named “jesus,” i still giggle each time. there is a really somber bagger at publix here named jesus and it just doesn’t seem to fit. when you mentioned embroidered things, my mind started coming up with some pretty funny (if not a bit irreverent) things we could put on t-shirts…

    robyn – doesn’t it come across as kind of pitiful? omar always says that if you get sick from drinking from the common cup, you’ve got bigger issues with god 😉

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