Holy & Hungry- Jesus and Mary Biscuits
I briefly touched on the fact that Grits to Grace was making it's TV debut in a previous post. Crazy right? Well, the show has aired and I want you to be the first to hear about how hard it is to watch yourself on the screen. Despite my misgivings on the spectacle my hair decided to stage that day, it was truly amazing experience. In addition to eating some hot food together we dug down deep for some meaning, and since good talk can't be broken down into a soundbite, here are some of the thoughts and themes from the day of the shoot. The episode is down below if you haven't seen the fun yet!
The supper club that Holy & Hungry captured at The Riverside Church is a very special one, and I am very lucky to have been it's chef for a short time. As community members sit down to share a meal with their Senior Pastor, personal stories and life testimonies tumble onto the table as the dishes are passed around. We leave supper a little more aware of the people we are sharing the world with, and a little more aware of the ways in which we are hungry.
By carving out and keeping safe a space of peace and gathering, The Riverside Church has fulfilled one aspect of its mission to extend radical hospitality and welcome to all the people who walk in the door. Humans need to eat and they also need to be loved- what mighty threads are running through these two truths. When we sat down to this dinner we asked ourselves if food figured in our lives as a spiritual relationship. Did someone have a memory of Church or a special family gathering that included food? The answer was most invariably yes. Did certain foods represent, remind us of, and encourage actions of love and connection? As adults a specific smell, perhaps a pie or a beef stew, can give us a sudden warmth and happiness as our memories dance back to us. How is the scent and steam of food unlike the use of incense in early and modern worship and celebration? The reminder of an offering, a sign of a feast, the prayers of those long past filling our senses and surrounding us once again. When we cook a meal together we are creating a space, saying something definitive about time itself, and inhabiting our being with the new attentiveness of hunger and the intention of renewal.
There are many ways to believe in love in this world, as many names for God as there are unique and treasured dishes on our tables. In a time when our food can seem as mysterious and inacessible as the discourse of political parties, it might be important to have a bit of ceremony about the whole delicious thing. When I hear people say "You are what you eat!", it sounds so lonely. Our food has become lonely, and we, completely in control and inevitably flawed. I am not satisfied with that story. We are how we eat together. Let's make a meal and think of a new story.
When we eat an apple, Let us really eat that apple Let us savor every note of sweetness considering every mineral of flesh and seed each memory of sun and soil slowly awakening
Let us like Saint Hildegarde name our involvement in the mystery of growing things and the miracle of new and nourishing life let us eat together at the same table
For the hunger we have cannot be filled by bread alone- only in the warmth of fellowship do we feel full again This is where we return when we are lost This table and greet one another at the end of each day What we put on the table is up to us Whatever we bring will be multiplied by our sharing Loneliness is not on the menu
We want to participate in the world in all its sorrows and celebrations We know that our eating implicates us in relationships of giving and recieving
and with deep thankfulness we will look at what has been given us through creation at our own hunger at the fullness we feel in fellowship and the lives of others living things which have given themselves for us
We see the hands that have prepared this food and those who have grown it We eat and see what new work our hands must turn to
We will sing to each other Come, sit and eat Feast on your life! and let not others go hungry for kindness
Holy & Hungry on The Cooking Channel
For more good reads on the show and the topic of Food and Faith, amble on over to this lovely article about me in the Deseret News! Visit Patreon to get the yummy recipe for my Jesus and Mary Biscuits featured on Holy & Hungry, and become a patron to recieve updates, personal recipes, and posts from Grits to Grace.