Monday, April 6, 2009

The Power of Food

Food for thought!

Sara Miles never expected to find herself at an Episcopal church handing out bread, beans, tomatoes, and groceries to crowds of San Franciscans. A lesbian, former atheist, and journalist, Miles had for years been suspicious of church-run charities. Then again, Miles had always been conscious of the power of food to connect people.

While reporting on the mid-1980s insurgency in the Philippines, Miles remembers vividly how a family she encountered en route cooked up fish and corn gruel for her and the group of guerrilla soldiers she traveled with. “Over and over again, I was fed and taken care of by total strangers.”

In 1995, Miles was living in San Francisco and happened into a service at St. Gregory’s Episcopal church in the Mission District. Out of pure curiosity, she took Communion. She recognized something in that moment that resonated with her—strangers handing her bread and wine.

Over the coming months, Miles became a convert and regular church attender. When she stumbled on a pamphlet from the San Francisco Food Bank, she saw an immediate connection between her faith, her activism, and her preoccupation with food. She convinced St. Gregory’s Church to let her start a food pantry.

Read the whole article here. (The Power of Food by Madeline Ostrander)

Our Monroe Food Pantry is here.

Sara's great book is called Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion and you can find it on

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