Food nourishing the soul

With a new series of Eat Pray Share: Breaking Bread beginning we reflect back on the insightful Theology on Tap presentation given by Genevieve Anderson on "The Gourmet Gospel".

Learning how food can be spiritual is a welcome idea for foodies everywhere and a new thought perhaps for others. Foodie, facilitator and chaplain Genevieve Anderson shared thoughts and ideas on the concept that awareness of food can "bring us closer in relationship with the divine".

Anderson developed and facilitated the series 'Eat, pray, share' and is a self-proclaimed foodie. Though many audience members agreed there is pleasure in eating and enjoying good food, "food is not just about pleasure, food is sacremental, food brings us nutrition", said Anderson.

Anderson took the more than 80 people, mostly young adults on a journey of awareness. She connected concepts of food as nutrition to Jesus as the bread of life. She gave numerous examples in the bible where Jesus broke bread, fasted, feasted and performed miracles as at the wedding in Cana; and when ordinary people shared a meal with the other such as Abraham and Sarah who shared a meal with angels in disguise.

"Just as Jesus ate and drank with those who were outside organized religion so we need to. How do we share food with others who are not in our families?" Anderson asked the audience to consider the spirituality of food as nourishment and as Jesus, the bread of life, and how we share that life with others.

"When we break bread together we do experience Jesus if we open our eyes, recognize the sacred in our meal and in our companions", said Anderson.

Young people and all those in attendance were challenged to contemplate sharing food with others as spiritual and as spiritual nutrition. Anderson also gave practical advice on how we can share with others beyond dinner parties and dinning out with friends and family. She suggested having extra granola bars for the homeless and hungry or asking them if they would like us to purchase a meal for them, especially if they are outside the Tim Hortons or Harveys. She encouraged us to volunteer and support Out of the Cold, Salvation Army and Meals on Wheels.

"You don't have to be a Dorothy Day or Jean Vanier to share food with others." She reminded us to think about how we share food with others, food that is a right, a basic necessity as we go about living the 'Gourmet Gospel'.

by Marie-Lauren Gregoire