Dinner Church, church gatherings centered around sharing a meal together, has been rising in prominence over the last few years. In these churches, the Eucharist is not a symbolic meal, but rather a full, literal meal and the time of worship is woven through the time of sharing food and conversation together.
Here is a dinner church reading guide — books that offer a look into the stories, theology, and practice of dinner church.
Food and Faith: A Theology of Eating
This book provides a comprehensive theological framework for assessing the significance of eating. Drawing on diverse theological, philosophical, and anthropological insights, it offers fresh ways to evaluate food production and consumption practices as they are being worked out in today’s industrial food economy. Unlike books that focus primarily on vegetarianism and hunger-related concerns, this book broadens the scope of consideration to include the sacramental character of eating, the deep significance of hospitality, the meaning of death and sacrifice, the Eucharist as the place of inspiration and orientation, the importance of saying grace, and the possibility of eating in heaven. Throughout, eating is presented as a way of enacting fidelity between persons, between people and fellow creatures, and between people and Earth. Food and Faith demonstrates that eating is of profound economic, moral, and spiritual significance. Revised throughout, this edition includes a new introduction and two chapters, as well as updated bibliography. The additions add significantly to the core idea of creaturely membership and hospitality through discussion of the microbiome revolution in science, and the daunting challenge of the Anthropocene.
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IMAGE CREDIT: Fresh Bread Platter (Creative Commons License via Wikimedia Commons)