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When members of Ecclesia Houston tried to identify more closely with the poor through a season of fasting, they found their hunger for community was satisfied. Their 40-day experience is now shared by their pastor, Chris Seay, in A Place at the Table, a six-session DVD small group study based on his similarly titled book, released this month. Rather than a total fast, Seay advocates participants limit their diet to the basic foods those in less affluent parts of the world eat as a way of identifying with their struggles, then giving the money they save to child sponsorship, poverty relief and clean water projects there. While the emphasis of the study is on looking at world issues such as poverty and hunger—“why there is suffering in the midst of our excess”—the series may also encourage people to examine their different appetites for things beyond food. 

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