Monday, April 27, 2009


Last night I was awakened to a soft shake and whispers of "10 more have died of that flu." I experienced a similar arousal when the wife got me up early to give me the latest death toll. That's a terrible thing to wake up to, kids.

It is scary, I know, but I am trying hard not to buy into the panic just yet. Common sense measures – washing hands often, cleaning public keyboards, using Germ-X after bathroom breaks and before eating – seems appropriate. Wearing a mask, hoarding food, and barricading myself inside are things I'm saving for a certified pandemic.

Speaking of, the World Health Organization has raised the pandemic threat level from 3 to 4, which means "likelihood of a pandemic has increased, but not that a pandemic is inevitable."

Let's relate this to religion. Why? Why not. I love talking God. My grandmother, a devout Church of Christ follower for her entire life, has many old school views of God (which is fine). Her church continues to use one cup during communion from which all members drink. She says something about the juice in a silver cup kills all germs. I don't think that's true, but that's another blog post. My church uses individual plastic cups, which I prefer. For the record, I don't think God gives a pittly-damn if we use one cup or gobs of cups, but that's just me. She believes God sees it as a matter of salvation.

I wonder if such pandemics will change her church's mind or if they will continue to practice one cup in spite of the dangers. Perhaps they see it like the snake handling churches see things: If God wants me to die of [snake bite or pig flu] then that's how it is? I don't know. If they did change, would they someone be compromising and questioning God? At least, would they see it that way? Does the church body have a responsibility to practice safe Christianity? What if these safe religious practices are not in line with their views of God? Big questions for them.

I haven't asked her yet. She's 92 and gets upset easily. I am curious, though.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My daughter (and thousands of other little catholic kids) are receiving first communion this week. I asked the principal about the swine flu concern and was told "nto one has ever reported a case of disease transmission from receiving a communion cup." I think this stinks. Are we still willing in this day of science and awareness to sacrifice our children to prove our faith?" I can see why the Church is losing followers.