November 17, 2017

Worship and Evangelization Outreach / Gabriela Ross

Have a purpose, proclaim the Gospel when breaking bread around the table

Gabriela RossWhen Catholics gather around their table, there should be “something different” about the experience, something that would leave a guest feeling like this particular meal was something special.

As Catholics, we believe that everything in creation has the handprint of its Creator and glorifies him.

For example, sunsets remind us of God’s beauty, snowflakes remind us of God’s attention to detail, and water reminds us of Divine Mercy.

Seeing the world with Catholic eyes leads us to seek the sacred that is intertwined and sometimes hidden within creation. The same is true of our Catholic table.

When we open our hearts to the sacred around us, we come to find that pumpkin pie, turkey and gravy are opportunities for fellowship and grace. A Catholic meal is full of moments that lead to holiness!

We pause to pray before we eat, giving thanks for the blessing of food and those who gather to share it. We remember those who are in need of nourishment and love—our brothers and sisters in Christ.

When we make the time of the meal a priority and put away other distractions, we have room in our hearts to share our lives, our stories and our faith.

This is what Pope Francis calls the “art of accompaniment,” that is, to see the presence of God in the life of another and be the light of Christ to them.

This is a way to proclaim the Gospel in our homes, or wherever we gather to share a meal—with God at the center. When we approach the Catholic table with this kind of intentionality, we are doing something holy. We are living out our call to be the laity: the Church in the world. We are making our homes places where God’s grace is present: a domestic Church.

The next time we sit down at a Catholic table to share a meal, let us do so with purpose. Let us remember that God created food; the time to work and the time to rest; and he created each one of us, who bear his image and likeness.

May we grow holier by breaking bread together in our homes, and so prepare our hearts to celebrate the Eucharist more intentionally at our parish home, and ultimately enjoy the eternal wedding feast of the Lamb at the banquet of heaven. Let’s give glory to God! Bon Appétit.

(Gabriela Ross serves as coordinator of catechetical resources within the archdiocesan Secretariat for Worship and Evangelization. She can be reached at:

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