Did Buzz Aldrin secretly take Holy Communion on the moon? This was a question answered in a reader’s letter to the Daily Mail on May 3rd, 2018 by William Jacks. In an article entitled ‘Buzz’s Giant Leap For God’, he wrote, “Yes: Buzz Aldrin took Holy Communion on the lunar module after it had landed on the moon in 1969”.
William tells how Buzz brought the consecrated bread and wine from Webster Presbyterian church near Houston, where he was an elder. He had received permission to administer it to himself. The astronaut later wrote about this experience in his book ‘Magnificent Obsession.’
“I reached into my personal kit and pulled out the elements along with a card 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 silently read the Bible passage as I took the wafer and the wine, and offered a prayer for the task at hand, and the opportunity I had been given.”
However as William points out, the communion service on the Moon wasn’t made public until after the mission: “Aldrin had planned to share the event with the world over the radio. However, NASA was embroiled in a lawsuit filed by a leading atheist, so he was asked to keep it a secret. Madalyn Murray O’Hair, founder of American Atheists, wanted a ban on astronauts practising religion on Earth, in space, or around and about the Moon, believing it violated the constitutional separation between Church and State.”
50 years after the moon landing
Today nearly five decades later, Madalyn Murray O’Hair is remembered as one of the ‘most hated women in America’ following the case of Murray v Curlett, which led to the ending of compulsory Bible reading in US public schools in 1963.
Time moves on and Murray O’Hair, her son Jon, and granddaughter Robin disappeared in Austin, Texas in 1995. A year later, with no sign of the family The New York Times speculated they had gone on the run with money misappropriated from American Atheists. However in 2001 the family’s murdered bodies were found on a ranch in Texas.
An awful tragedy, and an indicator of the dangers we face when we have no God to protect us. As I considered this period of history and the irony that the atheist lady thought she could hinder the Word of God, it made me realise that God’s Word will not return void.
Isaiah 55:11 tells us, “So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” Today in 2018 Buzz Aldrin’s story is again remembered in a tabloid national newspaper, with a large print following and online readership of millions.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 tells us, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under Heaven.”
This article was written by Don Botham who is a TV Producer and writer based in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in the North East of England. For many years Don faithfully produced GOD TV’s In Depth Series capturing the life stories of diverse men and women of God.