Someone asked about the story I told in the water communion service this past Sunday. Here it is:
Each year we do this water communion service. When we share our water in the common bowl, it symbolizes that while we are separate people, we are also part of an interdependent community.
You probably know about the water cycle. When it rains, water falls from clouds onto the ground, and eventually it flows into a river, and all rivers flow down to the ocean. Water evaporates from the ocean and forms clouds, the clouds drift over the land, it rains, and the cycle begins again. You’re in the middle of this cycle because you drink about 2 liters of water every day, and then you sweat or urinate and put water back into the water cycle. So water is constantly on the move.
You probably know that water is made up of molecules, and that each water molecule is made up of two atoms of hydrogen and one atom of oxygen. Water molecules are incredibly tiny, so tiny you cannot see them. If you had 18 grams of water, or a little more than half an ounce, that would be about 6 x 10^23 (pronounced: “six times ten to the twenty-third”) molecules. The molecular weight of water is approximately 18, and therefore 18 grams of water should have a number of molecules equal to Avogadro’s number, or 6.02 x 10^23.