The Lord’s Supper on the Moon

In 1969 Buzz Aldrin was an Elder at the Webster Presbyterian Church in Texas as well as an astronaut. This is his own account of his activities in the Lunar Landing Module during the first manned mission to the moon:

“So, during those first hours on the moon, before the planned eating and rest periods, I reached into my personal preference kit and pulled out the communion elements along with a three-by-five card on which I had written the words of Jesus: “I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me, and I in him, will bear much fruit; for you can do nothing without me.” I poured a thimbleful of wine from a sealed plastic container into a small chalice, and waited for the wine to settle down as it swirled in the one-sixth Earth gravity of the moon. My comments to the world were inclusive: “I would like to request a few moments of silence … and to invite each person listening in, wherever and whomever they may be, to pause for a moment and contemplate the events of the past few hours, and to give thanks in his or her own way.” I silently read the Bible passage as I partook of the wafer and the wine, and offered a private prayer for the task at hand and the opportunity I had been given.”

– Astronaut Buzz Aldrin, Magnificent Desolation, 2009

This account is corroborated by an Associated Press dispatch from 40 years earlier, July 20, 1969, which read,

“When the Rev. M. Dean Woodruff [minister of the Webster Presbyterian church where Aldrin was an elder] brought out the bread for Communion, a portion of the loaf had been broken away. The minister explained that Aldrin took a portion of the loaf with him on the moon trip and at some time during the afternoon, after the moon landing is made, Aldrin would symbolically join the other parishioners in Communion during one of his rest periods.”

20 July 1969 Associated Press 
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