I love bread. I wish I didn’t, sometimes, especially when I’m trying to stick to a healthy diet where too many carbs are not really my friend, but alas I still enjoy a slice from a nice bakery loaf now and then. There’s nothing quite like a really fresh piece with some real butter (yes, REAL butter, containing two ingredients: cream and salt. Both of which I can pronounce and know from where they come). I savored a piece last night while I was making dinner, as a matter of fact.

There is something so simply nourishing about bread. It’s a basic staple. People have been making it for thousands of years, no matter their financial state, because it is inexpensive to make, and you typically have the ingredients on hand at any given time. More importantly, you can live off bread, if you have to. It has kept people alive for stretches of time, in dire circumstances.

I was also listening to an old Christmas album last night, as I made dinner. It was called The Great Songs of Christmas, and the first song on the album was Panis Angelicus, sung by Robert Goulet. I have always loved Christmas songs sung in Latin, often finding myself a little sad that the Latin language is dead, around this time of year. Humming along, as I chopped and ate my bread, I became curious as to its translation.

This morning, I looked it up.

Heavenly bread
That becomes the bread for all mankind;
Bread from the angelic host
That is the end of all imaginings;
Oh, miraculous thing!
This body of God will nourish
Even the poorest,
The most humble of servants.
Even the poorest,
The most humble of servants.

I had no idea. Heavenly bread that becomes the bread for all mankind. Bread that nourishes and sustains, that keeps us alive in the most dire circumstances.

Bread that is – or should be – a staple.

In the midst of a season of copious baked goods, I’ll be looking at the bread a little differently this year. I’ll be trying to consume the Bread of Heaven as often as I possibly can, as it’s the basis of the healthiest diet I could eat. Not a carb in sight, and no butter needed.

Just the Body of God that will nourish this poor, humble servant.


“I’m telling you the most solemn and sober truth now: Whoever believes in me has real life, eternal life. I am the Bread of Life. Your ancestors ate the manna bread in the desert and died. But now here is Bread that truly comes down out of heaven. Anyone eating this Bread will not die, ever. I am the Bread—living Bread!—who came down out of heaven. Anyone who eats this Bread will live—and forever! The Bread that I present to the world so that it can eat and live is myself, this flesh-and-blood self.” John 6:47-51 MSG