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Publication Date: May 12, 2020

For All Who Hunger

Searching for Communion in a Shattered World

By Emily M. D. Scott

Emily Scott never planned on becoming a pastor. But when she started a church for misfits that met over dinner in Brooklyn, she discovered an unlikely calling—and an antidote to modern loneliness.

As founding pastor of St. Lydia’s in Brooklyn, New York, where worship takes place over a meal, Emily Scott spent eight years ministering to a scrappy collective of people with different backgrounds, incomes, and levels of social skills. Each week they broke bread, sang hymns, made halting conversation with strangers, then did the dishes. But in a city where everyone lives on top of one another yet everyone is lonely, these gatherings filled a longing that most people—even Scott—didn’t realize they felt.

With tenderness and humor, Scott weaves stories and reflections from the life of her unlikely congregation. Recalling her journey as a single woman and a pastor looking for love and friendship in a city of millions, she discovers how small acts of connection hold more power than we realize in a time when our differences are being weaponized, and creates activism and justice work fueled by empathy and relationship. For All Who Hunger articulates the value of church as a place where people can hear not only that they are loved but that they are good. When members of Scott’s congregation build relationships with their neighbors in one of the world’s most unequal cities, they find courage and resources to begin working for a more just world.

For All Who Hunger is a story about a God whose love has no limits and a faith that opens our eyes to the truth. There’s a place for you at the table.

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