communion once a month (usually on the first Sunday of the month), but some may serve or offer it at
each weekly worship service.
Preparations for a communion service may differ according to specific local guidelines and chaplain
Protestant communion is usually served or offered in one of three methods: individual cup, common
cup, or intinction cup. These three methods are explained as follows:
Individual Cup Method. This method is most widely used in a garrison setting and in the
collective Protestant worship service. An individual cup communion set is composed of a
metal base, three metal cup trays (each tray can hold forty small glass or plastic cups), a
metal cover (the cover usually has a small cross on the top), and two bread trays. The
number of cup and bread trays needed for a communion service depends on the number of
persons anticipated for the service. Components from more than one communion set may be
added to serve a greater number of people than one communion set can handle. When the
altar is prepared for the communion service, the chaplain may also want to cover the
communion elements (cup and bread trays) with a white cloth.
Common Cup Method. This method is used by liturgical Protestant faith groups which have
retained the traditional form of communion service similar to that of the Catholic faith.
Intinction Cup Method. This method is most commonly used in a field or combat
environment. With this method, the chaplain takes the communion host and dips it into the
wine or grape juice in the chalice and then distributes the host to the communicant.
Preparation of the altar will vary somewhat according to the type of service being performed. Following
are the steps in preparation that are the same in all three types of service:
Place the altar frontal on the altar with the colored front facing the congregation. The correct
color can be determined by referring to the liturgical calendar.
Place the altar linen on the altar frontal. The altar linen will cover the portion of the altar
frontal that overlaps the top of the altar.