Will they eat?
One of the things I am most excited about for this year is food. People like food. I like food. And the thought entered my mind not too long ago that food is what we should include more of at church. Real food. Real meals. After all, food brings people together like nothing else. While dinner at Junior High youth group has been a tradition for as long as I can remember, real food and real meals could play a more central role in youth ministry and ministry, in general.
This idea hit home after we held a youth and families committee meeting at Napolita in Wilmette earlier this year. Besides eating to-die-for pizza, we conducted the business of our meeting while enjoying ourselves and growing closer as a committee. It occurred to me that this meeting in its very essence, answered more than one calling. Emulating the earliest Christians as in Acts, we broke bread together with glad and generous hearts. Doing our church work in a public place among our neighbors and friends, we evangelized in a way that was neither intrusive or abrasive -- but subtly powerful.
Secular society has reduced nourishment, especially for young people, into portable protein smoothies, snack packs of hummus and pita chips or apples and caramel sauce or carrots and ranch, clif bars, fast food, starbucks. But deep down we all know, food is the vehicle not only for physical nourishment, but for spiritual nourishment as well. Food is for fellowship, for new relationships and old, for families, for celebration, for comfort for joy. So starting September 18, we will prepare a table for teens in grades 7-12 at 9 am on Sundays at the manse. This year's all new Youth Breakfast will feature Houston breakfast tacos and other breakfast foods. This breakfast will nourish in more ways than one. Come. Eat.