Heaven's Kitchen: Living Religion at God's Love We Deliver

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University of Chicago Press, May 1, 2003 - Religion - 192 pages
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How do people practice religion in their everyday lives? How do our daily encounters with people who hold different religious beliefs shape the way we understand our own moral and spiritual selves? In Heaven's Kitchen, Courtney Bender takes a highly original approach to answering these questions. For more than a year she worked in New York City as a volunteer for a nonprofit, nonreligious organization called God's Love We Deliver, helping to prepare home-cooked meals for people with AIDS. Paying close attention to what was said and not said, Bender traces how the volunteers gave voice to their moral positions and religious values. She also examines how they invested their conversations, and mundane activities such as cooking, with personal meaning that in turn affected how they saw their own spiritual lives. Filled with vibrant storytelling and rich theoretical insights, Heaven's Kitchen shows faith as a living practice, reshaping our understanding of the role of religion in contemporary American life.

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Heaven's kitchen: living religion at God's Love We Deliver

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Of Mennonite background, Bender (sociology and religion, Columbia Univ.) examines religious discussion in contemporary American life by reporting on the experiences she had in doing volunteer work ... Read full review


Gods Love We Deliver 1985 to 1994
The Daily Life of the Kitchen
4 Religious Practice in the Kitchen
5 What We Talk about When We Talk about Religion
6 Doing Something about AIDS
Hints Followed by Guesses
Studying Religion at Gods Love We Deliver

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About the author (2003)

Courtney Bender is an assistant professor of religion and sociology at Columbia University.

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