Showing posts from December 24, 2008

Best-loved books of 2008, #24: Favorite book about giving

Shop Indie Bookstores Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion by Sara Miles (bonus: a smitch of Christianity for Christmas Eve) As she'll tell you from page 1, Sara Miles is not your traditional (American) Christian. Raised by atheists (themselves raised by missionaries, and soured on the whole thing), she had a child as a single mother, came out as a lesbian, found her best mentors in restaurant kitchen work, and was deeply involved in leftist international activism. One day for no explainable reason, she walked into a church in San Francisco, and was blown away by the ritual of Communion. It's pretty strange and powerful stuff if it hits you right: Christ feeding people with his body, people feeding each other, regardless of whether they're handing the holy foodstuff to a lover or friend or enemy or stranger or beggar. "Take this bread," is the command. "Feed my sheep." With years of experience of the power of eating together from her restaurant w