Religion: Storm in a Cup

And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it.

—Mark 14:23

In the 19 centuries since that first Communion, Christians have worked out many ways of administering the sacramental cup. Roman Catholics reserve the wine for the priest. Baptists and many other Protestant groups deliver grape juice in tiny paper cups to church members in their pews. But the Anglicans, Episcopalians, Orthodox and most Lutherans use a common chalice, held by the server to the lips of each kneeling communicant.

Unsanitary! has been a recurrent cry against this practice ever...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!