I wonder if Jesus knew what modern churches would do with communion. Did he foresee the ceremony? The bigness of it? Did he foresee how infrequently some of us observe communion? We got big. Much bigger than the Last Supper (which no one called the Last Supper except in retrospect; for them it was just… supper.). We have a lot of people to maneuver through the line at communion, many people to serve in the pews.
Communion doesn’t have to be that big. It could just be supper.
I think communion happens every time we’re together, and even better with food. Wherever Christians gather together, wherever people of like faith, or different faiths, gather together over food, communion happens. We relax. We share. We laugh. We are vulnerable to each other. We commune.
I think for a writing group, a meal is important. Bringing something from our own kitchens, our own hearths, our own recipes can help us get to know someone better than just reading their writing. Oh, that will happen too, but the food that we share gives a part of us to each other too.
When we bare our writing, we share pieces of ourselves as well. But if we’ve shared a meal, we learn to trust each other in multiple ways already, and we are already relaxed.
I just know that the tension in a workshop goes down when you have coffee, cheese, enchiladas, a bowl of chili, or some sushi. People can reach over the table and grab some grapes while we’re talking. We’re more family when we eat together. And when we share our faith together, that sense of communion grows. When we share our disappointments, our bitterness, our private joys, our worries, our important beliefs, or when we hear others’ distinctly different versions of our beliefs, we relax and trust each other. With food, with our stories, with helping us become better writers.
At the bottom of a bowl of chili lies the best workshop you’ve ever had.