Food and faith are a natural combination. A central element of Christianity, after all, is taking communion, eating bread and drinking wine. This eating and drinking is embraced by Jesus Christ’s promise to connect us more deeply with God, ourselves, and others. Through this holy and festive food and drink, we are strengthened as we go out into the world. Hunger and nourishment are recognized and fulfilled.
In her spiritual memoir, Take This Bread, Sara Miles explores the connection between spiritual and physical hunger and nourishment. Communion, community, hunger, and nourishment tie together Miles’ life, from her experience as a student and reporter in Latin America in an era of war and unrest, to her time working in New York City restaurant kitchens, to her work in helping to start food pantries in San Francisco.
Sara Miles’ life moves more deeply into connecting spiritual and physical hunger when she walks into an Episcopal church one Sunday morning and takes communion. This seemingly small act upends her entire life and gives her a new framework from which to live. As Miles becomes more involved in the life of the congregation that she has discovered, she learns language to describe the embodied faith that she has always lived out. All her life, Sara Miles has been feeding people in one way or another, and in the framework of Christianity she finds language to describe what she already believes, and a deeper understanding of why she lives her life as she does. Communion, connection, and compassion abound in this gracious and wise spiritual memoir. There is much to learn from the intersection of food and faith as Sara Miles presents it in Take This Bread.