I have arrived home from the 8am communion remembering a conversation with a barrister this week.
I had asked him in a relaxed moment what the police response would be to a vicar found to be driving over the limit on a Sunday morning. I explained that in a full church with a lot of visitors it is often impossible to gage how many would take communion but you had to be prepared for them all. This meant that sometimes there was a lot to drink after wards.
One of the party asked why the wine had to be consumed.
I replied, "Because it is the blood of Christ"
Even the people who go to church regularly seemed amazed by this statement.
"Also the bread, in what ever form it comes is the body of Christ....it all has to be consumed by the priest..with some help from the servers if necessary.
Astonishment all round.....it was clearly not something they had ever considered.
The young barrister though was quick.
"You can't be charged with drinking the blood of Christ " he said....
This post is not intended to revisit any arguments about transubstantiation . But it is an interesting point of law I think. He was not saying it as a joke, there was no trace of humour.
I pass it on to my esteemed colleagues and hope they may never have to use it in court.