The Water Communion
is a ritual
service common in Unitarian Universalist
congregations. It is usually held in the fall.
In 1980, the first water communion service was held at a UU Women and Religion Convocation in East Lansing, Michigan.
Due to the nature of Unitarian Universalism, traditions vary from one congregation to another; however, most Water Communions follow the same general idea. Throughout the year, members of the congregation collect samples of water from various places they go to, ranging from vacations to homes; film canisters are often used as containers for this purpose. At the service, the samples of water are placed in a bowl and allowed to mix. This water is often used for ceremonial purposes at other times of the year (although some congregations use water "symbolically" from the Communion, as storing the water can be impractical and various bacteria in the water can cause foul odors.)
The symbolism, like that of the comparable Flower Communion
, can be interpreted in various ways. The classic life-related symbolism of water is apparent. The rejoining of many waters can also symbolize the rejoining of the congregation after summer travels.
Unitarian Universalist Association