But he says more than take, eat, and feed my people. It is not about only caring for our own but also restoring our estranged ecologies, our fractured homes. Our churches and our food choices could aspire to greater things, beginning with a simple call to hospitality and openness within the Great Commandment to love God and neighbor.
Divided, but attentive
He changes some practices, but his core message comes out of his Jewish heritage of Passover, sabbath, and manna. His teaching is rooted in the rural and household culture of ancient Israel. Better to learn about the neighborhoods where we live and serve.
Define health in larger ways — what Thomas Berry describes as the Earth Community. As a Christian, I find such a vision symbolized best in the communion meal, the Eucharistic feast, the thanksgiving, which Paul calls us to keep — to serve and preserve. What happens next? Recognizing that our longings for justice and sustainability are wrapped in communion, we join a rite rooted in the practical, holy, ecumenical, inclusive, universal call to careful and common action.
We experience sacrament.
The Last Supper was food for the disciples to get to work. There I find enough nourishment to keep going. During a visit to Yale last December, Wendell Berry was the guest at a dinner that several faculty and students attended. Keep going. You might find yourself wanting to give up. I support you, but you also have to rely on this imperfect community around you.
We must seek transformation within ourselves, not just blame our food system. For our part, however, we are obliged to assume greater measures for the application of the ecological and social consequences of our faith.
It is extremely vital that our archdioceses and metropolises, as well as many of our parishes and sacred monasteries, have fostered initiatives and activities for the protection of the environment, but also various programs of ecological education. We should pay special attention to the Christian formation of our youth, so that it may function as an area of cultivation and development of an ecological ethos and solidarity.
Childhood and adolescence are particularly susceptible life phases for ecological and social responsiveness. The solution to the great challenges of our world is unattainable without spiritual orientation. In conclusion, then, we wish all of you a favorable and blessed ecclesiastical year, filled with works pleasing to God.
We invite the radiant children of the Mother Church throughout the world to pray for the integrity of creation, to be sustainable and charitable in every aspect of their lives, to strive for the protection of the natural environment, as well as the promotion of peace and justice. Finally, through the intercession of the first-among-the-saints Theotokos Pammakaristos, we invoke upon you the life-giving grace and boundless mercy of the Creator and Provider of all.
Nourishing Directions for Eucharistic Theology and Practice
What Hunsinger sees in St. Do This in Remembrance of Me excavates a prime sacramental tension within Reformed theology and bathes it in the light of recent liturgical theology and ritual theory. It also gives us ears for the insights of liturgical theology and ritual theory.
- Book The Eucharist And Ecumenism Let Us Keep The Feast Current Issues In Theology 2008.
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Ritual theory thus becomes a tool by which to understand the meanings and relationships in which we are formed in actual congregational Eucharistic practices. Analyzing local events, rather than official doctrinal statements, is one important way to see what the Eucharist means for Christians.
We need to appreciate the close analogy between Incarnation and Eucharist to move closer to the scriptural witness—and to the heart of Christ.
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Her reflections on local practices and theological understandings touch on another important issue. Theologically, the action of God and creatures should not be conceived of as competing with one another, as if the more God acts the less creatures do. Rather than arguing about the metaphysical schemes involved, Moore-Keish helps allay this worry by a very interesting finding. In sum, Moore-Keish does a wonderful job of introducing the reader to what, for many, will be a different way of conceiving how God is active in the Eucharist, demonstrating how this understanding both draws from the fruits of liturgical theology and ritual studies and fits well with the Eucharistic theology of Calvin and Nevin.
Her book will help Reformed people make sense of the tensions caused by the different eucharistic theologies and practices at play in our churches today. It also helps us identify the very practical aspects of our liturgies and celebrations that can tip our primary theology one way or another. It lacks a full argument for the strand of the Reformed tradition she prefers. This is not a fault, but simply a limitation of her focus.
Related The Eucharist and Ecumenism: Let us Keep the Feast (Current Issues in Theology)
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