Is sanctification of meals as a family essential?


Is sanctification of meals as a family essential?
By Leonard Kamugisha
Ancient Christians had it that a family that prays together lives happily. This tradition has however died out as most of the no longer come together for morning, meals, night prayers due to earthly amenities.
Family prayers especially on a dining table is as essential as life in the lives of Christians so must you pray together to grace meals and in other prayers.
According to Fr Leo Patalinghug, praying as a family allows God to be part of your family experience as well as strengthening it.
“Praying as a family before meals is an indispensable link to family life because it allows God to be part of your family’s experience. Through the incredible act of feeding one another, God is the link that strengthens families through this incredible act of feeding one another,” Fr Leo said.

Fr Leo stressed these last week during an interview with the Zenit News Agency publication in Dublin, Ireland where he stressed that abundance makes people forget about God.
“I believe abundance can sometimes make people forget God,” he exclaimed
Fr Leo was giving a talk on the topic ‘Grace Before Meals, Recipes to Strengthen Family Life’ at the World Meeting of Families. Pausing a rhetoric question, “How many people today pray before meals?” 
Fr Leo reportedly said that some faithful nowadays look at praying before meals as awkward and a habit of the past. He says that any heartily prayer is good to grace meals although a universal prayer brings Christians together and ensures to them that they all can go to God.
“Any prayer that comes from the heart is a good prayer to suggest. But I also say that universal prayers – something we can say all together – shows how prayer can bring us together, and together we can go to God.  So no matter what language, style, devotion or spontaneous prayer, we say we just have to make sure it comes from the heart, brings us closer to God and gives us more compassion for others,” Fr Leo in an interview.
Fr. Leo Patalinghug, American priest, chef & author of “Plating Grace: Elevating Culture and Family Life One Meal at a Time.” He is a priest member of a community of consecrated life, Voluntas Dei and the founder, host, and director of ‘Plating Grace,’ an international apostolate to help strengthen families and relationship through God’s gift of a family meal.
He has also established a non-profit organization, The Table Foundation, with the mission to elevate culture and family life, one meal at a time. The Table Foundation works to harvest the power of food to do good one meal at a time by bringing people together around a common table. 
Father believes that the simple act of sharing a delicious meal prepared with love promotes peace and harmony in our world. He therefore, reminded Christians with plenty food to always share with those who do not have and pray with friends and families as one of the ways of recognizing God.

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“My purpose is simply to make sure we have a healthy and a balanced spirituality – that we don’t pray just in our needs, wants and hungers, but that we also can recognize God’s Providing Hand in our abundance and festivities,” Fr Leo recommended.
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