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Can online Communion be a substitute for the real thing?

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"In many ways this is a parallel discussion to the earlier debate about whether online community is ‘real’ community," Thumma said.

LifeChurch.tv, one of the most innovative online churches in the country, included a blog post in 2010 illustrating how to prepare for online Communion by having elements, such as bread or a cracker and wine or Kool-Aid, on hand. A spokeswoman said that the church currently does online Communion at periodic gatherings for online volunteers rather than as a weekly practice.

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Eventually the Methodists’ debate on online Communion could be presented before the General Conference, the denomination’s top lawmaking body, in 2016 in Portland, Ore.

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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