Here’s a puzzler: Technically, it’s a deacon’s responsibility (or at least the responsibility of priesthood holders) to pass the sacramental emblems to the congregation, but obviously even a nonmember can pass the bread and water down the row to someone who wants to partake. Does this mean that a woman could take the sacramental emblems into the mother’s lounge? More generally, what is the role of the priesthood holders in the process?
And this becomes more interesting when you look at the scriptures, where one reading limits the distribution of the sacramental emblems to the priests*—and there’s no scriptural reason for the deacons doing it (though, presumably, it could relate to their responsibility to assist the bishop as needed), nor for restricting the preparation of the sacramental table to the teachers and not the deacons.
When it comes down to it, i’ve often thought that these policies were actually instituted as a means of making early-teen boys feel important, but that’s probably overly cynical for even me.
* See Doctrine and Covenants 20:46,58, where we run into the problem of what precisely administer means.
Faith Hill: Where Are You, Christmas?
4 years ago