Food for the Soul: A love story

Kindness of Sisters of the Community of the Transfiguration creates a win-win situation for their employees and the community

Food for the Soul: A love story

Food for the Soul: A love story 1500 1119 Episcopalians in Connection

Once upon a time in the land of Glendale, in a place called the Transfiguration Spirituality Center, there worked a gentle group of people who cooked while others retreated. These kind people enjoyed their work enormously and delighted in creating delicious meals for the guests who visited. 

One day in March an ogre called COVID (now known as COgre) came to the land, and the retreat house had to be closed to guests and the kitchen was shut down for all but ‘carry out’ meals. The amazing kitchen staff was bereft of their regular duties.

The Spirituality Center Kitchen staff, Matthew McGuire, Codi Jackson, LaShawnda Cofield, Liza Wilford and Cecil Williams, are joined by the Rev. Anne Reed in boxing up meals to go.

There was also in the land of Glendale the Community of the Transfiguration, a group of Sisters who loved all the people who worked for them. When the COgre appeared, they spent hours in meetings discovering ways to keep their beloved staff from being furloughed. The kind Sisters arranged for the gentle people from the Spirituality Center to work in the Sisters’ kitchen a few days a week. As time went on, however, the longing for the Spirituality Center staff to be back in their own kitchen never went away. 

The COgre had spread its terror far and wide. In the nearby land of Lincoln Heights, in a place called St. Monica’s, a loving group of people (who were also connected with the Sisters) began handing out meals to the neighbors. One day, two angels named Mary and Michael, (Mary Lewis Knight, TSC Operations Manager and Michael Pearl, Executive Director of St. Monica’s Recreation Center in Lincoln Heights) visited the Sisters and suggested that the TSC workers who longed to prepare food could be invited to provide meals once a week to the people in nearby Lincoln Heights, who needed the food. The Sisters agreed to support this effort, and Food for the Soul was born. Soon, the workers who created wonderful meals were doing so for 250 people every Tuesday.

News of the delicious food being available from TSC spread throughout the surrounding countryside, and others began to ask if meals could be provided for them too. At every turn, the generous Sisters supported the requests for meals. And the TSC workers have been busy every day with meal preparation for one group or another. 

With the COgre still in the area, it is impossible to know when the gentle, kind people of the TSC kitchen will be able to prepare meals for those who come on retreats…not until January 2021 at the earliest. But in the meantime, Food for the Soul is operating at full steam*, and the gentle people are again enjoying preparing meals for happy eaters. 

The End

 The Rev. Anne Reed is a deacon serving Christ Church, Glendale, and St. Andrew’s, Evanston, and is also the executive director of the Transfiguration Spirituality Center.