Saturday, February 14, 2009

Out of the mouths of babes

When I was a child and first learned about communion, I was horrified. It was even more grotesque as any horror movies I watched while peeking from beneath a blanket. Eating a dead guy’s body, drinking blood! Gross!

Then later, when I was still a Christian and a Sunday School teacher, I actually was one who engaged in telling horrible things to small children and brainwashing them to believe it was all okay, normal. Now live to regret it. Many of the children sat before me with either puzzled expressions or expressions of horror. And some had lots and lots of questions of which I couldn’t seem to answer very well. Why didn’t I recognize the horrible thing I was implanting in the minds of small children? While Christian parents keep their little ones from seeing scary movies, and violent cartoons, etc. they think that telling them the gruesome stories of Jesus is okay.

The site “Why Won’t God Heal Amputees” has a scenerio that goes like this in the Chapter “Why Do We Eat Jesus?”:

Child: Daddy, what are they doing?

Daddy: Well dear, this part of the service is called communion.

Child: What’s communion?

Daddy: Well, it’s where… Well, it’s… you know, what we do is we eat Jesus’ body to… Well, it’s complicated. Let me see…

Child: We eat Jesus’ BODY???

Daddy: Yes. Well, no, but…

Child: Why do we need to eat Jesus??? I don’t want to eat Jesus!!!

Daddy: No, no, no. It’s OK honey. It’s OK. Be quiet now, don’t cry in church. Shhhh. Shush. Now it’s OK.

Child: But Daddy, I don’t want to eat Jesus!

Daddy: Mom, help me out here.

Mom: Honey, it is a holy sacrament. You see, we eat Jesus’ body and we drink his blood because…

Child: I have to drink his blood too??? Mommy, I don’t want to drink blood!!!

Mom: Honey, calm down! You don’t actually drink his blood.

Child: But that man up there is holding up a cup and he is saying that it is Jesus’ blood! Mommy! I want to leave! I am leaving!

Mom, Dad: No honey! Wait! We can’t leave now!

So what happens to people as they grow older? Why do they come to accept this bizarre ancient ritual as something sacred and beautiful? While the story of Dracula drinking the blood of humans, and cannibalism are things that frightens most people, the ritual of eating Jesus’ body and drinking Jesus’ blood is respected and loved.

WWGHA states:

Because Christians have been participating in the communion rite for many years, they tend to forget just how bizarre this ritual is. But any child sees it with fresh eyes. And many children are, naturally, horrified at the thought of eating Jesus’ body and then drinking his blood. It is grotesque in the extreme and a child implicitly understands that.

So, what happens? Years and years of brainwashing? Parents being trusted to tell them the truth and telling their young ones that it’s okay and nothing at all wrong with it and children accept it because they trust their parents? The point is, when children are small it seems they instinctively know when something is not right, so what the heck happens to make grown-up adults participate in such bizarre rituals?

1 comment:

tina FCD said...

A feeling to "belong" to something...?