Thursday, June 26, 2008

Take This Bread

Last year I read "Take this Bread" by Sara Miles and thought it was more than wonderful. Recently I started it again for a small group reading selection and am finding it to be even more earth- shattering than the first time.

This is the story of a woman, raised as an atheist, who wandered into an Episcopal church one day, received communion and "discovered a religion rooted in the most ordinary yet subversive practice: a dinner table where everyone is welcome, where the despised and outcasts are honored." p. xii

This is the story of one woman who answered a call to feed people - especially those at the margins of our society, by starting more than a dozen food pantries in the poorest parts of San Francisco. There is a paragraph from page 95 that describes the quotations found on the altar at St. Gregory's. "The first, in Greek, from the gospel of Luke, recorded an insult to Jesus: 'This guy welcomes sinners and eats with them.' On the other side of the altar were the words of the seventh-century mystic Isaac of Nineveh: 'Did not our Lord share his table with tax collectors and harlots? So do not distinguish between worthy and unworthy. All must be equal for you to love and serve.' "

Oh to be this open, Lord! Oh to be this loving, Lord!
May the Spirit of the Living God lead us into new ways
of embracing our neighbors and all who we meet this day. Amen


Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I keep hearing about this book. I may have to look for it.

Jan said...

Maybe I should read that book after all. I wonder. . . .

Gannet Girl said...

I think if you go back a short way in the archives, there was a RevGals discussion on this one a few months back; it was the featured book of the month.