Book Review

To Thank and Bless

Prayers at Meals

reviewed by Shelby Ussery

A family gathered around a table to share a leisurely evening meal is a fading trend in our fast paced and fast food centric world. Taking a moment to give thanks before a meal is an even more rare occurrence. With this in mind, Dietrich Reinhart and Michael Kwatera present readers with scripturally based and beautifully written prayers for all seasons.

Reinhart and Kwatera write prayers that can be used for both families with young children and families with grown children alike. A typical prayer pattern is followed throughout the collection, making this a very family and congregation friendly prayer book. A chosen leader will begin the prayer, then the entire group will participate, presenting a wonderful way for children to participate in prayer and learn the act of prayer tactually. There are truly three sources of nourishment the authors wish to be realized through these prayers: food, fellowship and God the Father Almighty.

The Church family could benefit greatly from this book of prayers. Meals shared together in a church are not only most often delicious, but blessings abound in fellowship. The prayers printed in this book are quick to thank God for the gift of community, making the prayers wonderful to say before or after Church meals.

There is a practice proposed in the book not often observed: prayer after the meal. What a wonderful tradition this is, as it aids us in our venture to eat mindfully. Thanking God for the goodness that was the food is a wonderful way to be in touch with the food we’re eating and to reflect on the blessing it was.

Liturgical Press, 2007

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