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Pilgrim is a major new teaching and discipleship resource from the Church of England. It will help enquirers and new Christians explore what it means to travel through life with Jesus Christ. A Christian course for the twenty-first century, Pilgrim offers an approach of participation, not persuasion. Enquirers are encouraged to practice the ancient disciplines of biblical reflection and prayer, exploring key texts that have helped people since the earliest days of the Christian faith. Believing that the Christian faith is primarily about relationship, Pilgrim aims to lay a foundation for a lifetime of learning more about God's love revealed in Jesus Christ and what it means to be his disciple. Assuming little or no knowledge of the Christian faith, Pilgrim can be used at any point on the journey of discipleship and by every tradition in the Church of England. Pilgrim is made up of two parts: Follow and Grow. Each consists of four short courses and a leaders' guide. Follow introduces the Christian faith for complete beginners, while Grow aims to develop a deeper level of discipleship in those who have turned to Christ. Each short course contains six-sessions, supported by online audio-visual resources. All sessions combine a simple framework prayer, reflection on the Bible in the lectio divina style, an article by a modern writer, and time for questions and reflection. The first book in the Follow Stage, Turning to Christ, explores the questions candidates are asked when they decide to become followers of Jesus.
The American way of life pushes people to constantly strive for
more--more money, more stuff, more clout. But how much is enough?
And how do we know when we have too much of a good thing? In this
provocative, paradigm-shifting book, Will Davis Jr. challenges
readers to discover the peace that comes through contentment with
what we have and compassion for those in need. Through surprising
statistics, scriptural insight, and real-life stories, Davis gently
leads readers to consider living with less in order to do more for
the kingdom. Thought-provoking discussion questions and short
chapters make this a perfect study for small groups.
Andrew Graystone is an everyday activist who believes in the power of tiny acts to change the world. He is the person whose image went viral when, after the mass shooting in the Christchurch mosque, he stood outside the mosque in his Manchester neighbourhood with a cardboard sign saying 'I'll watch while you pray'. Faith, Hope and Mischief tells funny, prophetic and powerful stories of tiny acts of rebellion Andrew has carried out, alongside arresting reflections on what it means to live in faith and hope. His stories delight and challenge in equal measure, showing how the kingdom of God turns up in all kinds of ways and how small things make a big difference. His stories encourage readers to take risks, make holy mischief, poke fun at the over-mighty, and believe that despite evidence to the contrary, the world's story is going to end well. This is a manual of everyday activism, a wellspring of wit and wisdom for days when hope is hard to come by, and an inspiration for anyone who feels powerless to make a difference.
Younger Christians are leaving the church in droves, frustrated and disillusioned by the track record of American Christianity. Older Christians, who still lead most churches, are concerned about this trend. But the generations don't see eye to eye on many things. Here two evangelical leaders forty years apart in age discuss some of the biggest issues challenging Christianity today and into the future, such as marriage, homosexuality, creation care, and politics. The authors model and cultivate an intentional, charitable, and much-needed intergenerational dialogue. Each chapter includes sidebar reflections from notable Christian leaders and individual and small group study questions.
"I am not going to apologize for speaking the name of Jesus . . . If I have to sacrifice everything . . . I will." -Rachel Scott
The Columbine tragedy in April 1999 pierced the heart of our country. We later learned that the teenage killers specifically targeted Rachel Scott and mocked her Christian faith on their chilling, homemade videotapes. Rachel Scott died for her faith. Now her parents talk about Rachel's life and how they have found meaning in their daughter's martyrdom in the aftermath of the school shooting. "Rachel's Tears" comes from a heartfelt need to celebrate this young girl's life, to work through the grief and the questions of a nation, and to comfort those who have been touched by violence in our schools today. Using excerpts and drawings from Rachel's own journals, her parents offer a spiritual perspective on the Columbine tragedy and provide a vision of hope for preventing youth violence across the nation.
Meets national education standards.
There's no avoiding popular culture--we've been enculturated into it. What does it mean to be faithful Christians in a pop culture world? How do we think Christianly about celebrity and leisure? Some Christians try to abstain from "worldly" pursuits, while others consume culture indiscriminately, assuming it has little effect on them. But if Christ is Lord of all of life, then there ought to be Christian ways to engage with and appreciate popular culture. Steve Turner has spent his career chronicling and interviewing people from the worlds of music, film, television, fashion, art and literature. Now he provides an insider's guide to a wide range of entertainment pursuits, with biblical frameworks for understanding pop culture genres and artifacts. Turner explores how movies use redemptive narratives and parables ways journalistic headlines convey worldview assumptions differences between famous people in the past and celebrities today what ideas are communicated through clothing and fashion design how technology changes our sense of what is real and much more God entrusts culture to us and gives us the ability to critique it, enjoy it and create it. This book will help you become a better cultural critic, consumer and creator.
This work assembles the best of Todd's (available) speeches and provides an analysis of their rhetorical and political significance. Sir Garfield Todd's (1908-2002) lifelong support of African rights earned him initial political success, subsequent imprisonment, and, finally, rightful recognition. Often labeled a liberal in the British political tradition, a closer study of Todd's rhetoric demonstrates that his politics flow directly from his religious heritageaand not from political liberalism.
With all of the heat surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, even the most basic facts can be hard to grasp. How do we make sense of what we read in the Bible--and what we read in the news? In this Skeptic's Guide?, Dale Hanson Bourke sheds light on the places, terms, history, and current issues shaping this important region. Offering an even-handed presentation of a range of views on the most controversial issues, she provides a framework for American Christians to use in understanding why the conflict occurred, why it continues--and what remains to be done. With maps, charts, photos, and quotes, the guide answers such tough questions as: What is meant by a two-state solution? Who are the Palestinian Christians? Do other countries help or hurt the peace process? How does the Arab spring affect the conflict? Easy to read and understand, this dynamic guide offers the type of presentation that has made the Skeptic's Guide? series so popular with individuals and groups. Offering basic information and simplifying complex issues, it is a helpful reference tool for beginners and experts alike.
"Cause us trouble Keith, but not too much trouble," these were final words of advice from a bishop to a new curate the day before his ordination. This book is the result of much reflection on that advice. Keith Hebden, parish priest and spiritual activist brings action and theory together with ideas that are as practical, accessible and exciting as the activism they underwrite. Beginning with the conviction that Jesus was an activist who was deeply committed to community, this book seeks to explore ways in which each of us can challenge the unjust structures that keep us from realising our full and common humanity. Seeking Justice is a timely reminder of our need to face up to our personal ability to change the world we live in and the urgency of the task ahead.
Domestic abuse is an ugly, but all too real, problem that is often not dealt with well within our churches. Eryl Davies tells the stories of domestic abuse survivors - both men and women - who have been let down by their churches' reactions. How are we to respond biblically to such situations? How do pastors and church leaders address this problem when both victim and abuser are part of their congregation? As well as making the reader aware of the reality of this issue, Davies gives helpful guidelines and suggestions for church leaders dealing with cases of domestic abuse.
The evangelical embrace of conservatism is a familiar feature of the contemporary political landscape. What's less well-known, however, is that the connection predates the Reagan revolution, going all the way back to the Depression and World War II. Evangelical businessman at the time were quite active in opposing the New Deal on both theological and economic grounds and in doing so claimed a place alongside other conservatives in the public sphere. Like previous generations of devout laymen, they self-consciously merged their religious and business lives, financing and organizing evangelical causes with the kind of visionary pragmatism that they practiced in the boardroom. In God's Businessmen, Sarah Ruth Hammond explores not only these men's personal trajectories but also those of the service clubs and other institutions that, like them, believed that businessmen were God's instrument for the Christianization of the world. Hammond presents a capacious portrait of the relationship between the evangelical business community and the New Deal and in doing so makes important contributions to American religious history, business history, and the history of the American state.
What does exercise have to do with our souls? How do our sleeping habits relate to being conformed to the likeness of Christ? What do our bodies have to do with spiritual formation? Valerie Hess has taken up these questions with her spiritual formation graduate students. And Lane Arnold has processed them with others as a spiritual director. They have discovered that the life of our bodies has quite a bit to do with the life of our souls. Together they have written a book that helps readers explore choices about what we eat worshiping with our bodies seasons of life for body and soul caring for the planet and more Each chapter has reflection questions and creative exercises to help you engage body and soul with these themes. This is not just a book to read. It's an invitation to a new way of experiencing God.
Named a Gift Book for the Discerning New Yorker by The New York Times In a metropolis like New York, homelessness can blend into the urban landscape. For editor Susan Greenfield, however, New York is the place where a community of resilient, remarkable individuals are yearning for a voice. Sacred Shelter follows the lives of thirteen formerly homeless people, all of whom have graduated from the life skills empowerment program, an interfaith life skills program for homeless and formerly homeless individuals in New York. Through frank, honest interviews, these individuals share traumas from their youth, their experience with homelessness, and the healing they have discovered through community and faith. Edna Humphrey talks about losing her grandparents, father, and sister to illness, accident, and abuse. Lisa Sperber discusses her bipolar disorder and her whiteness. Dennis Barton speaks about his unconventional path to becoming a first-generation college student and his journey to reconnect with his family. The memoirists share stories about youth, family, jobs, and love. They describe their experiences with racism, mental illness, sexual assault, and domestic violence. Each of the thirteen storytellers honestly expresses his or her brokenheartedness and how finding community and faith gave them hope to carry on. Interspersed among these life stories are reflections from program directors, clerics, mentors, and volunteers who have worked with and in the life skills empowerment program. In his reflection, George Horton shares his deep gratitude for and solidarity with the 500-plus individuals he has come to know since he co-founded the program in 1989. While religion can be divisive, Horton firmly believes that all faiths urge us to "welcome the stranger" and, as Pope Francis asks, "accompany" them through the struggles of life. Through solidarity and suffering, many formerly homeless individuals have found renewed faith in God and community. Beyond trauma and strife, Dorothy Day's suggestion that "All is grace" is personified in these thirteen stories. Jeremy Kalmanofsky, rabbi at Ansche Chesed Synagogue, says the program points toward a social fabric of encounter and recognition between strangers, who overcome vast differences to face one another, which in Hebrew is called Panim el Panim. While Sacred Shelter does not tackle the socioeconomic conditions and inequities that cause homelessness, it provides a voice for a demographic group that continues to suffer from systemic injustice and marginalization. In powerful, narrative form, it expresses the resilience of individuals who have experienced homelessness and the hope and community they have found. By listening to their stories, we are urged to confront our own woundedness and uncover our desire for human connection, a sacred shelter on the other side of suffering.
Sex trafficking is currently a hot news topic, but it is not a new
problem or just a problem in "other" countries. Every year, an
estimated 300,000 American children are at risk of being lured into
the sex trade, some as young as eight years old. It is thought that
up to 90 percent of victims are never rescued.
"Citizenship is salvation," preached Noble Drew Ali, leader of the Moorish Science Temple of America in the early twentieth century. Ali's message was an aspirational call for black Americans to undertake a struggle for recognition from the state, one that would both ensure protection for all Americans under rights guaranteed by the law and correct the unjust implementation of law that prevailed in the racially segregated United States. Ali and his followers took on this mission of citizenship as a religious calling, working to carve out a place for themselves in American democracy and to bring about a society that lived up to what they considered the sacred purpose of the law. In The Aliites, Spencer Dew traces the history and impact of Ali's radical fusion of law and faith. Dew uncovers the influence of Ali's teaching, including the many movements it inspired. As Dew shows, Ali's teachings demonstrate an implicit, yet critical component of the American approach to law: that it should express our highest ideals for society, even if it is rarely perfect in practice. Examining this robustly creative yet largely overlooked lineage of African American religious thought, Dew provides a window onto religion, race, citizenship, and law in America.
It's not every day that you get a visit from God. Burning bushes, ladders to heaven, chariots of fire and all that--we look for those stories in the Bible, and we look for them in our lives. When it comes to something as important as what we do with our lives, we think, maybe God owes us a big event. But, as Leroy Barber has learned through his work in inner cities and with young people, that's not usually how it works. More often God calls out to us from everyday misfortunes and all-too-common injustices, and he invites our response--not just a response in the moment, but a recognition that we have a role to play in seeing God's kingdom come, God's will done, on earth as it is in heaven. Through the surprisingly normal stories of the heroes of faith in the Bible, and through Barber's experiences with Mission Year and other ministries, in this book you'll learn what it means to change the world from your own little space in it.
Can we know anything about God apart from the Bible? Many Protestant Christians are suspicious of natural theology, which claims that we can learn about God through revelation outside the Bible. How can we know anything about God apart from Scripture? In Nature's Case for God, distinguished theologian John Frame argues that Christians are not forbidden from seeking to learn about God from his creation. In fact, the Bible itself shows this to be possible. In nine short and lucid chapters that include questions for discussion, Frame shows us what we can learn about God and how we relate to him from the world outside the Bible. If the heavens really do declare the glory of God, as the psalmist claims, it makes a huge difference for how we understand God and how we introduce him to those who don't yet know Christ.
Is agreeing to disagree good enough for God's family? Christians don't necessarily agree with each other when it comes to questions of religious pluralism, homosexuality, the role of government, abortion, and war. Too often, we manage these disagreements by ignoring them. Yet we are called to engage the world for the sake of Christ. How can we be effective if we avoid society's most pressing questions? In 10 Issues That Divide Christians, Alex McFarland challenges Christ-followers to drill down to the biblical core of ten current issues--such as social justice, evil and suffering, pornography, and environmentalism, among others--and echoes the biblical invitation: "Come let us reason together." Only by engaging the Scriptures deeply, thinking clearly, and speaking truthfully can we in God's family address our differences and discover the peace that comes with unity of purpose. With the Bible as our guidebook and the Spirit as our guide, we can respond to today's urgent questions with the mind of Christ.
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