#Potluck, #ChurchSuppers

Pentecost 18 – Inside Outside Ravioli – October 13, 2019

When I was growing up in Watertown, New York – way upstate near the Thousand Islands Bridge over the St. Lawrence River – I just loved our potluck dinners at church. In lots of ways, Emmanuel reminds me of Trinity Episcopal Church in Watertown.

Many of my favorite childhood memories are of Trinity – the stage in the Parish Hall, much like the one in Emmanuel Day School now, with its red velvet curtains hanging in thick folds we could roll ourselves into and hide in. The big church kitchen, where my grandmother and her happy crowd of friends chopped countless onions for casseroles and made giant salads for Wednesday Night Supper. The gym in the basement, where, despite my complete inability to shoot a basket, we played kickball and dodgeball during the months when the snow drifts were too high to play ball outside. And the nave, gorgeous – like Emmanuel’s – its sturdy ship’s hull ceiling showing us that we were safe, no matter what the rough seas of winter weather or life brought.

Wednesday Night Supper was my favorite. My friend Jane’s mother made a casserole she called Inside Outside Ravioli, and it’s still the first thing that comes to mind when I think of church suppers. Large shell pasta with homemade Bolognese sauce, spinach, sharp cheddar cheese, and other yummy secret ingredients, Mrs. Spencer’s Inside Outside Ravioli seemed like the church community itself to me as a child – a big, warm, mixed up casserole of nourishing comfort, security, and love.

On October 22, we are planning an Emmanuel Church potluck supper. We’re calling it Dinner With Della+, because I hope that it will give us all an opportunity to get to know each other better. The potluck supper will also be the kickoff of Emmanuel’s Foyer Groups, which the Emmanuel Community
used to call Firesides.

The Old French meaning of the word Foyer is hearth or hearthside, and it evokes an image of warmth, hospitality, and comfort. We welcome old friends, family members, and newcomers into our homes by gathering around a fire or these days, in a kitchen – close to where food is being prepared, for fellowship.

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