Heaven's Kitchen Living Religion at God's Love We Deliver
by Courtney Bender
University of Chicago Press, 2003
Cloth: 978-0-226-04281-7 | Paper: 978-0-226-04282-4 | Electronic: 978-0-226-04283-1
ABOUT THIS BOOKAUTHOR BIOGRAPHYTABLE OF CONTENTS

ABOUT THIS BOOK

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.

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY

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

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Preface
1. Decorating Holiday Bags at the Friends Seminary, Making Dinner in the Kitchen
2. The Meals Are the Message: God's Love We Deliver, 1985 to 1994
3. Getting the Meals Out: Daily Life in the Kitchen
4. Religious Practice in the Kitchen
5. What We Talk about When We Talk about Religion
6. Doing Something about AIDS
Conclusion: Hints Followed by Guesses
Appendix: Studying Religion at God's Love We Deliver
Notes
Bibliography
Index