Is the 'Communion burger' in poor taste?
The "Ghost" burger at Kuma's Corner in Chicago features a "Communion wafer garnish."
October 3rd, 2013
12:50 PM ET

Is the 'Communion burger' in poor taste?

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-editor

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(CNN) Mmm - sacralicious?

A Chicago restaurant is pushing the boundaries of bad taste with its October Burger of the Month.

Kuma's Corner, a heavy-metal themed joint with an "Eat beef; bang your head" ethos, says its new burger is an homage to Ghost, a Swedish band that performs satanic songs in Catholic clerical garb.

"The Ghost" burger features a "Communion wafer garnish," a white, unleavened disc bearing the imprint of a cross and a crown.

Ghost's new album comes complete with grape juice and a mock Communion wafer. Not coincidentally, the Communion burger at Kuma's comes with a red wine reduction.

For those unfamiliar with the Christian sacrament, Holy Communion commemorates Jesus' Last Supper. The bread represents his body, Jesus says in the Bible, and the wine his blood. In many Christian traditions, a priest or minister will consecrate the wafers and wine before sharing them with the congregation.

Luke Tobias, director of operations for Kuma's, said the restaurant's Communion wafers are not consecrated, and thus, not really holy. "It's more or less a cracker with a cross on it," he said. The restaurant bought the wafers online from an e-Bay-type website.

They're not trying to make a big religious statement, Tobias said, just trying to have fun honoring a band they like.

"If there is a God, I'm sure he has a sense of humor."

Some of God's peoples seem to get the joke, according to Kuma's.  A Presbyterian minister who ate the burger yesterday posted a message on Facebook saying that "sacrilege never tasted so good," Tobias said.

But other Christians have a beef with Kuma's burger.

Tobias said Kuma's phones have been ringing off the hook, with some saying that putting a Communion host on a burger is like waving the American flag over a fire.

Jeffrey Young, who runs a podcast and blog called "Catholic Foodie," called the Ghost burger "crass and offensive."

"For us, as Catholics, the Eucharist is the body and blood and soul of divinity itself," said Young. "Although the Communion wafer is not a consecrated host, it's still symbolic, and symbols are important."

There's one thing that Tobias and Young agree on, however: Communion wafers are not particularly tasty.

"From a culinary standpoint," Young said, "it's kind of worthless."

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Faith • Food

soundoff (683 Responses)
  1. Now that's just stupid...

    Communion is in poor taste.

    December 20, 2013 at 2:41 am |
  2. sell your music online

    Insightful track ! Definetly would get the album great job...

    October 28, 2013 at 10:43 am |
  3. Reason

    Thank goodness we have all been informed of the travesty! To think I may have gone precious seconds without knowing of some burger that could possibly be controversial!

    This is the same "junk-food" media that clogs up the brain. You think that shutting down the government so they could privately line their pockets while we neared a "debt ceiling"

    Nope we here are concerned about Kuma's Corner and a small piece of unleaven bread that God doesn't care about. I'm actually rather certain the judgement being passed on a man would be more troublesome.

    Until we're dining in the afterlife ask for fries instead and leave your opinions on the table.

    ALSO after the Crusades, Witch-Hunts, and Inquisition I find that the Catholic opinion of right and wrong rather wanting. The only difference now is you'll burn them publicly in a comment board, at the stake is a little dated isn't it.

    October 14, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
    • firebasealpha

      Dear Reason,
      It is not surprising to me that the world is on a path to self distruction. It is people with your way of thinking that sustains and supports evil in all forms of existence throughout the world. How soon you forget the history of evil and its effects on humanity. It is the "host berger today, but if not protested at this point, what will it be tomorrow? Example: Hitler started as a small time party member in Germany and because good men and women did nothing, look what developed.

      Can you not see that by allowing any disrespect of God or any of His Domain is a danger to all that belives in God. By standing up for your faith, nomatter how small the attack, sends a message to enemies of God that we who believe, will not tolerate even the smallest disrespect for God. Furthermore, addressing any challenge to the authority of God, no matter how large or small, is more important than anything we might suffer in this world.

      Should you be a believer in God, then you understand that whatever you might suffer in this world, where you occupy space for a short period of time, cannot compare to eternal happiness in the glory of God. For in His kingdom there is no suffering; no pain; no hatred and best of all, devil.

      October 14, 2013 at 5:42 pm |
    • alohalady14

      No offense, but just how unintelligent can you be ??? It's the meaning behind it...........do you never look at the meaning behind things, or are you one of those that has that "ANYHING GOES" type of thinking ?

      This burger joint is paying tribute to a group that MOCKS/INSULTS God and HIS Church. Can you really really say that there is nothing wrong in that ? Would you not care if someone were to insult your father, or mother, sister or brother, or even your grandparents etc.? If you wouldn't then you definitely have problems, and there's nothing else anyone can say to you !

      October 14, 2013 at 8:08 pm |
    • Sara

      You're right. To think this is needlessly taking up the limited space on the internet so that there's no room left to read about the government shutdown. What were they thinking?!?!

      October 14, 2013 at 8:15 pm |
  4. Chrissy

    I understand that this wafer is not consecrated.. But if you realize that it is symbolic than you should know it is not right of you to do. There are better ways to represent a band than criticize a religion. God is loving, but I know His heart hurts when we disobey Him. And that minister is not a real minister, and must be leading his congregation away from Christ if he believes its ok to eat something that could be considered "sacriligious." This is disgraceful!

    October 12, 2013 at 9:22 pm |
    • Sara

      Do you really believe no ideas or beliefs should be questioned or criticized? What a good little Nazi you would have been.

      October 14, 2013 at 8:20 pm |
      • alohalady14

        It seems like you do not know how to comprehend things.....where on earth did Chrissy say that ideas or beliefs should not be questioned ? Are you the type that has that "ANYTHING GOES" type of thinking ? Is nothing suppose to be sacred in life ?

        This burger joint is paying "tribute" to that band that mocks/insults Christ and His church (whether you believe in Christ or His church doesn't matter). It matters to those of us that Love and believe in God and His Church. How would you like it if your father, or mother, sister, or brother, or grandparents were insulted, would you not care ? If not, there's nothing left to say, but if you would, then you should understand this insult/anger that us Catholic Christians feel toward this. God the Father is our Heavenly Father, Mary is our Heavenly Mother, and Jesus is our Lord and Saviour and Brother. If we would get upset at anyone insulting our earthly family, then how much more should we get angry at our Heavenly family being mocked and insulted (which is constantly happening everywhere, especially toward Mary, the mother of our Lord) !!!

        For those who CANNOT or WILL NOT comprehend this, then all we can do is pray for you !!!

        October 14, 2013 at 9:13 pm |
  5. notawonk

    CNN – why are you flacking all this inane junk. Foolish people writing silly stuff about
    things they seem to be too poorly educated to understand, and certainly brought up
    with no sense of propriety. Acting out like children! Making fun of anything they think
    might annoy others, Vandals. With paint cans in a park. Why are you giving this crap
    any attention?

    October 11, 2013 at 9:28 pm |
    • Marty Brynildsen

      Yes...vandals is the word. Vandals are almost always angry, but why? I can remember days when I had nothing better to do, and I, flat out, vandalized property, putting peoples well being, even their very lives at risk. The actions of this business are aimed at folks who will jump on their wagon, scoffing at the wisdom of the ages, and perhaps take their ignorance to the streets. Is this what our society has become...foolish arrogance and anarchy by default?

      October 22, 2013 at 9:42 am |
  6. maias

    Bearing in mind what Catholic tradition says happens to the wafer once it has been consumed, can I sue if my beef burger changes to some other flesh in my stomach?

    October 11, 2013 at 11:10 am |
  7. Nathaniel

    Well, I'm not catholic so I can't speak to it being in poor taste. But that picture sure makes it look like it'll taste poor – too much grease and fat on the bacon.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:06 am |
    • MAX

      Rejoice. Be exceedingly glad when these idiots shall say and do all manner of evil against u because of me. No they hated me first!

      October 11, 2013 at 12:40 am |
      • Nathaniel

        Yep, agree completely Max. Unfortunately somedays it's easier said than done.

        October 11, 2013 at 10:59 am |
        • Kay

          Max & Nathaniel,

          Agreed. Very poor taste.

          October 11, 2013 at 11:30 am |
  8. Cecilia

    It is not in good fast or funny! Even christians dislike that kind of food service.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:15 pm |
  9. WRT

    People... every man or woman that exists on this planet is no more than the sum total of what they have learned in life.
    it is interrupted either right or wrong. There is a function within each person that determines which is a correct determination. It follows the statement that one mans strength, might be another mans weakness. Wheather or not you believe in God, it is up to each of us to search and learn the facts, truths, and dismiss the legends that are nomore than fiction, from our research. True, this is basically s scientific point of view. But remember, God said, you must believe without doubt. Much proof has been presented to man on this earth, that He does exhist. We either believe it or not.

    Some believe that lucifer exists but not God. These people have no more proof that lucifer exhists than they do that God exhists, yet they believe in the devil. I can only realize that because they believe in evil, they think that only evil exhists
    which becomes their way of life. No hope, no prospects, no faith and eternal damnation is their resolve for all eternity.

    Any normal human being that does wrong, feels some remorse for his actions. Because of this, you have a concept of wright and wrong, good and evil. Then it is your choice to follow good which is God, or evil, which is the devil.

    October 10, 2013 at 7:54 pm |
  10. WRT

    To you, JWT, one who hides in his bedroom attacking God and all Religion from your computer, because you might have been slighted by family members or people you know. Life holds such little value for you that you regard all life as inferior and wanting. Once you attain respect for yourself and find a good reason for living, then...maybe you might gain some understanding of faith, hope and charity. These things you are seriously lacking. I will pray for that soon, these things will be revealed to you.

    October 10, 2013 at 6:42 pm |
    • Mark

      I have not 1oz of respect for religion. I dont care if i offend a family member or coworker with something i may say in regards to my opinions of god fearing religion. I have a firm understanding of faith, hope and charity and have plenty of faith, hope and happiness in my life. I just dont put faith and hope in some unseen, omnipotent creator of life. In fact, i truelly believe that anybody who does is pretty much an idiot with slight mental issues. At any rate, i'd eat this burger with pride. All the people crying about it being in poor taste.....Really?! Its simple. Dont eat the damn burger! You know what would be cooler than this burger? Toilet paper with bible verses printed on it.

      October 11, 2013 at 9:14 pm |
      • alohalady14

        You obviously DEFINITELY have some DEEP issues, and need to be prayed for. I will keep you in my prayers, with the rest of those that are like you !!!

        .......satan......get behind us !!!

        October 12, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.