Study: What are some of the things that make a dinner special for you? What makes it a feast?
Pray: Offer a prayer for those who go hungry this day – either because they lack food or the companionship to share it.
Serve: Is there someone you know with whom you could share a meal? How might you make your meal a feast with others?
Growing up in a large Italian-American family, big dinners were a common occurrence. The usual suspects like Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving were typical; but family gatherings (with all the adults talking and the kids talking louder) provided numerous opportunities for people to gather and make the simple task of taking nourishment a beautiful experience for body, mind, heart, and soul.
Tables were set, special foods chosen, delicacies prepared in advance…all these steps to make the dinner something special, something extraordinary.
They were feasts.
Indeed, whenever we take the time and effort to make dining an experience, we create opportunities that touch us on multiple levels. Good food is augmented by delightful conversation, enlivened with beauty, and woven together with human hopes and dreams. A feast is not just an abundance of food; it is a rich expression of God’s goodness working through others to nourish our lives in profound ways.
All of the readings point to different ways the Lord sustains our lives:
- Wisdom sets a rich table, calling us to abandon foolishness to follow her
- We “taste and see the goodness of the Lord” in the psalm response
- Ephesians invites us to be filled with the Spirit, living upright lives
- Jesus commands us to eat his flesh and drink his blood, that we might have eternal life
Every Mass provides us with the opportunity to draw near the altar and be renewed through our reception of Holy Communion. Christ sets the table for us, inviting us to turn away from destructive and harmful forces, so that we might receive the grace we need to continue on the journey of life.
Come to the Feast!
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Note: This post was first published on August 10, 2015.