Field Gleaning and Practicing Resurrection

The bounty!

By Anthony Calzia *

My name is Anthony. I am a second year Duke Divinity School student and a summer intern with the Society of St. Andrew. While I have done many things in the last month, the activity I have most enjoyed is field gleaning. This post is a reflection on field gleaning in light of a line from one of my favorite poems, namely the last line of Wendell Berry’s poem, “Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front.”

Manifesto calls for radical ways of resistance to patterns of thinking and life practices that are harmful to nature, communities, and the self. The last line reads, “Practice resurrection.” The call to practice resurrection is especially relevant when thinking about field gleaning. After the harvest, produce that has not been harvested is usually left on the field and turned over back into the soil. Most of this produce is edible. Through gleaning, food that is as good as dead is given new life and purpose as it goes to people suffering from food insecurity in local communities. In a very real sense, this act of gleaning is a way for everyone to participate in resurrection right now. For those who believe in the future resurrection of creation, including the physical human body, rescuing food for hungry humans is a picture practice of resurrection, which looks forward to the day when no one will hunger, but God will satisfy all those who hunger.

* Anthony Calzia is an intern with Society of St. Andrew in Durham, North Carolina.

Read the entirety of Wendell Berry’s Manifesto.


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In the event I, or a registered family member, suffers any illness or accident requiring emergency hospitalization, medication, or other medical assistance while participating in a gleaning event, permission is given for any medical treatment which is deemed necessary and reasonable under the circumstances. I fully understand and comprehend that reasonable care will be exercised by the adult staff for this gleaning event to protect the safety of those involved. I understand that the field supervisor’s instructions must be followed at all times, and that I am responsible for any damages caused to fields, farms, or equipment by me/my family members not following these instructions.

Photos, videos, and other images in which I, or a registered family member, appear that are taken during gleanings may be used by the Society of St. Andrew for news coverage, newsletters, reports, displays, and for other print, broadcast, web, or electronic news or promotional purposes.

I do not hold the board, members, or employees of the Society of St. Andrew (SoSA,) or any volunteers liable for injury, bodily harm, accidents, or death of myself/my child during events sponsored by the Society of St. Andrew. Neither will I hold the person(s) who owns and/or operates the property from which we glean, salvage, or to which we deliver food, liable for accidents, injury, or death during the gleanings or other SoSA events.

For a PDF print version of this waiver, click here.

How the Story of the 12 Baskets is Connected to SoSA’s Name

Matthew 14:16-21

But Jesus said to them, “They do not need to go away; you give them something to eat!” They said to Him, “We have here only five loaves and two fish.” And He said, “Bring them here to Me.” Ordering the people to sit down on the grass, He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up toward heaven, He blessed the food, and breaking the loaves He gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds, and they all ate and were satisfied. They picked up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve full baskets. There were about five thousand men who ate, besides women and children.

2 Kings 4:42-44

[…]the man of God […] said, “Give them to the people that they may eat.” His attendant said, “What, will I set this before a hundred men?” But he said, “Give them to the people that they may eat, for thus says the Lord, ‘They shall eat and have some left over.’” So he set it before them, and they ate and had some left over, according to the word of the Lord.

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