Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Sacrament Blues Part II

Last night Rich, Dave, Adam, and I had a Hive meeting and for a moment we started talking about the sacrament blues. Dave had no idea what we were talking about, but Adam and Rich completely agreed with me and even mentioned a few blues that I had forgotten about.

The funniest, I think, is the fake-sit-down after the Priests finish putting the sheet over the water after they are all done with the sacrament. In a regular ward, this isn't an issue because those deacons have the routine down pat. In a singles ward, however, it's a different bunch every week doing the blessing and passing, so the routine changes on a weekly basis.

After they return the trays and they are all done, everyone has the inclination that they are supposed to sit down and wait for a bishopric member to "dismiss" them to go sit with their friends. This only works if everyone sits down together and patiently waits. If even one guy makes the move like he's going to go sit with his friends again right away and not wait for the dismissal, then everyone has to go back as well. It would be too awkward for one guy to go back and sit down and everyone else just to sit there and wait. So what usually ends up happening is everyone sort of does a fake-sit-down. They kind of back towards their seats and bend over a little bit as if they're looking to see if they forgot their scriptures or something. They bend over and look under the chair as if they're perplexed as to where all of their stuff may have gone (meanwhile, knowing perfectly that's it's in the chair next to their friends) For some reason, passers of the sacrament have fallen into a pattern of having to do a slight bend over, a halfway sit-down, or at least a look under the seat before they go back to their normal seating. Just watch next Sunday, you'll see what I mean.

Another sacrament blue is the loud-chew which leads to the single-swallow. This goes along well with my comments made yesterday about the extreme quietness during the passing of the sacrament. Adam and Rich both said that the chewing noises made while taking the bread was a bit embarrassing to them. With that note, people have adapted to this situation by doing the single-swallow. The single-swallow is taking the bread and pretty much just swallowing it whole. This avoids the chew completely.

My last comment isn't really a "blue" per-se, rather it's a question I've always had about the sacrament. Obviously, a deacon is the first rank in the priesthood under which a young man is given the authority to pass the sacrament. But why is it so important for someone to have the authority to pass the sacrament if he just gives the tray to the person on the end of the row and then women and children pass the tray to the person next to them. Does the woman or child, both void of priesthood authority, somehow work under the keys of the Bishop through the administering deacon and suddenly have authority for that instance to serve the bread and water to the person next to them??? Is this just a subject that we all have ignored because it would be impractical for the passer to climb over everyone down the aisle?

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