A nourishing meal

Mission | December 1, 2016

Table Graces and Meals for Moms are creating community and well-wishes by taking meals to St. Paul members who are facing a variety of circumstances that warrant care and compassion.

Food is nourishment for the body and soul, organizers of both efforts say. A meal gives people the opportunity to experience some normalcy and take a little bit of a breath from the change that’s going on around them.

“Many stories about the ministry of Jesus occur around a meal and the sharing of food,” said Tammy Hermanson, St. Paul staff member who leads the Table Graces effort. “Food not only nourishes the body, but the gift of food feeds the spirit as well. Bringing sustenance at a time of need communicates caring. It creates bonds and strengthens friendships. Sharing food can be a wonderful way to serve one another while fulfilling very basic human needs.” meals

Table Graces

The Table Graces ministry is designed to help the people of St. Paul connect with others through preparing meals together a few times a year and delivering them to fellow St. Paul members at a later date. A frozen entrée, fresh salad, dessert, and a note card or prayer will grace the table of someone who would welcome a lovingly prepared meal during a particular time of need.

Someone recently hospitalized, a displaced individual or family, or those impacted by special circumstances are some of the people who benefit from the ministry.

Friendships also form among the people who come to cook, Tammy said. They take joy in recommending recipes and delivering meals.

“Table Graces transcends food,” she said.

Table Graces will hold a special Christmas cookie-making event on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2-6 p.m. in the St. Paul Kitchen. The cookies will be given to the families who participate in the Madison Marketplace food pantry. Signup for a shift at stpaulqc.org/signups.

Meals for Moms

When Christine Lassers had her third child, Teddy, fellow moms brought her meals during the initial weeks after his birth.

“It was wonderful,” said Christine. “Having a child is one of the most stressful times of life. Having someone bring meals, it takes one more thing off your plate. You don’t have to make a mess, don’t have to clean dishes.”

Christine now is the coordinator of Meals for Moms – an initiative started by the Moms’ Morning group that meets at St. Paul. They are now hoping to welcome others into the meal making and delivery effort.

The way it works is simple. Christine connects with Pastor Sara Olson-Smith each month about babies born, and children adopted, to St. Paul members. She then connects with the families to see if they would be interested in having some meals brought to them.

Some say no, some say yes. For the ones who say yes, Christine sets up an online signup, posts it on the Moms’ Morning page and sends the link out by email. The system is flexible to allow for suggestions based on dietary needs, allergies, or tastes, and for different preferences on days and times for deliveries.

It allows for a little bit of connection and goodness – for both the cook and the recipient.

“This is an extra little help until a family gets back to a regular routine,” she said. “New moms can relax a bit, and simply put the meals in the oven.”

Meals for Moms is inviting individuals to join in their effort to bring meals to St. Paul members who are new parents. To be a part of this flexible opportunity, email Christine Lassers at christine.lassers@gmail.com.

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Isaiah 53:4-12

4Surely our griefs He Himself bore,

And our sorrows He carried;

Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken,

Smitten of God, and afflicted.

5But He was pierced through for our transgressions,

He was crushed for our iniquities;

The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him,

And by His scourging we are healed.

6All of us like sheep have gone astray,

Each of us has turned to his own way;

But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all

To fall on Him.

7He was oppressed and He was afflicted,

Yet He did not open His mouth;

Like a lamb that is led to slaughter,

And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers,

So He did not open His mouth.

8By oppression and judgment He was taken away;

And as for His generation, who considered

That He was cut off out of the land of the living

For the transgression of my people, to whom the stroke was due?

9His grave was assigned with wicked men,

Yet He was with a rich man in His death,

Because He had done no violence,

Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

10But the LORD was pleased

To crush Him, putting Him to grief;

If He would render Himself as a guilt offering,

He will see His offspring,

He will prolong His days,

And the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand.

11As a result of the anguish of His soul,

He will see it and be satisfied;

By His knowledge the Righteous One,

My Servant, will justify the many,

As He will bear their iniquities.

12Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,

And He will divide the booty with the strong;

Because He poured out Himself to death,

And was numbered with the transgressors;

Yet He Himself bore the sin of many,

And interceded for the transgressors.

Psalm 91:9-16

9For you have made the LORD, my refuge,

Even the Most High, your dwelling place.

10No evil will befall you,

Nor will any plague come near your tent.

11For He will give His angels charge concerning you,

To guard you in all your ways.

12They will bear you up in their hands,

That you do not strike your foot against a stone.

13You will tread upon the lion and cobra,

The young lion and the serpent you will trample down.

14“Because he has loved Me, therefore I will deliver him;

I will set him securely on high, because he has known My name.

15“He will call upon Me, and I will answer him;

I will be with him in trouble;

I will rescue him and honor him.

16“With a long life I will satisfy him

And let him see My salvation.”

Hebrews 5:1-10

The Perfect High Priest

1For every high priest taken from among men is appointed on behalf of men in things pertaining to God, in order to offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins;2he can deal gently with the ignorant and misguided, since he himself also is beset with weakness;3and because of it he is obligated to offer sacrifices for sins, as for the people, so also for himself.4And no one takes the honor to himself, but receives it when he is called by God, even as Aaron was.

5So also Christ did not glorify Himself so as to become a high priest, but He who said to Him,

“YOU ARE MY SON,

TODAY I HAVE BEGOTTEN YOU”;

6just as He says also in another passage,

“YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER

ACCORDING TOTHE ORDER OF MELCHIZEDEK.”

7In the days of His flesh, He offered up both prayers and supplications with loud crying and tears to the One able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His piety.8Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered.9And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation,10being designated by God as a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.

Mark 10:35-45

35James and John, the two sons of Zebedee, *came up to Jesus, saying, “Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask of You.”36And He said to them, “What do you want Me to do for you?”37They said to Him, “Grant that we may sit, one on Your right and one on Your left, in Your glory.”38But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or to be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized?”39They said to Him, “We are able.” And Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you shall drink; and you shall be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized.40“But to sit on My right or on My left, this is not Mine to give; but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.”

41Hearing this, the ten began to feel indignant with James and John.42Calling them to Himself, Jesus *said to them, “You know that those who are recognized as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them; and their great men exercise authority over them.43“But it is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant;44and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be slave of all.45“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

Bartimaeus Receives His Sight