Monks, mushrooms and the sacramental nature of everyday eating

Don’t miss Fred Bahnson’s post from Duke Divinity’s “Faith & Leadership. Here are a few morsels…

“But as I wander the monastery gardens I find myself thinking not
about the feast days but of ferial repasts. These are the everyday
meals which, without a rich sacramental  life to accompany them, become
bleak affairs signifying nothing more than the intake of nutrients.

What was the connection between those consecrated elements and the
pumpernickel I ate for breakfast or the oyster mushroom risotto I had
at lunch? Perhaps our sacramental bread is less a representation of our
daily bread than something that actually gives shape and meaning and
coherence to it. Eucharistia, in Greek, means thankfulness.”

Fred writes of the overflowing goodness of the sacraments that circles around in love –

“During the four years I directed a church-supported community garden
ministry we would often hold Eucharist in the garden on our Saturday
workdays. I came to learn what was confirmed at Mepkin: that the
sacrament of Christ’s body and blood doesn’t end at the communion
table. It spreads outward into the streets and fields, the creeks and
rivers, the gardens and mushroom buildings, the Thanksgiving feasts and
the monks’ Spartan tables and back again to the lifted elements. Had we
the “conviction of things not seen” we would recognize this seamless
flow of nutrients both visible and invisible, profane and holy. And we
would be changed.”

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