18.2.11

"The Sacred Meal" by Nora Gallagher



Nora Gallagher, The Sacred Meal.  Thomas Nelson, 2009.  176 pages. 

Thanks to BookSneeze® for providing a free copy of this book for me to review. 

Here we have the fifth book in "The Ancient Practices Series" Thomas Nelson has published.  In it Gallagher explores some aspects of Communion or 'The Sacred Meal.' She does not, however, set out to explain it fully, dissect it theologically, nor place it denominationally.  Each of these activities has a minor role to play, but the major role is played by story telling.  In exploring the meal that Jesus gave us, Gallagher puts front and center her own experience of said meal and what it has meant to her. 

Stylistically this book was a treat.  Gallagher is an excellent story teller.  She chooses her tales well, illustrates her points effectively, poignantly draws out some of the nuances of partaking in communion, and in general keeps the reader very interested.  She had many great things to say about community, experiencing God, and openness to the life Jesus has called us to live.  Sadly, the theology of this book was lacking.  Her own experience of communion takes up entirely too much space leaving, quite literally, no room for the cross.  How one can write a whole book about communion while barely mentioning Jesus death, that which we are too remember in this meal, is beyond me... but Gallagher has done it.  

Conclusion: 2 Stars.  Not Recommended.  If this book had been written about a less serious subject matter, I would have recommended it on the strength of the writing alone.  It really is very well written.  However, as it is about the Lord's Supper, I cannot be swept away by rhetoric.  

No comments: