Raging with Compassion: Pastoral responses to the problem of evil

John Swinton In “Raging with Compassion”, Swinton argues for a practical theodicy, one embodied in the life and practices of the Christian community. This practicality does not seek to provide an explanation for the existence of evil, but rather presents ways in which evil and suffering can be resisted and transformed. This, he insists, will […]

Dementia: Living in the Memories of God

John Swinton In this book John Swinton develops a practical theology of dementia for caregivers, people with dementia, ministers, hospital chaplains, and medical practitioners as he explores two primary questions: Who am I when I’ve forgotten who I am? What does it mean to love God and be loved by God when I have forgotten who […]

Disability in the Christian Tradition

Brian Brock and John Swinton, eds. For two millennia Christians have thought about what human impairment is and how faith communities and society should respond to people with perceived impairments. But never has one volume collected the most significant Christian writings on disability. This book fills that gap.  Brian Brock and John Swinton’s Disability in […]

Mission Drift: The Unspoken Crisis Facing Leaders, Churches, and Charities

Peter Greer and Chris Horst “Keeping an eternal perspective is essential in our work. Mission Drift gives a clear message inspiring and challenging us to intentionally keep Christ at the center of all efforts. As Paul commands us, ‘Whatever you do, whether in  word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord […]

Life Together

Dietrich Bonhoeffer A classic text on Christian community, this story of a unique fellowship in an underground seminary during the Nazi years reads like one of Paul’s letters. The WWII martyr gives practical advice on how life together in Christ can be sustained in families and groups through a rhythm of solitude and community. The […]

The Butterfly Circus

Joshua Weigel This short film tells the story of a limbless man who finds his true place in the world. As one character puts it, “The greater the struggle, the more glorious the triumph.” Helpful for thinking about the dignity of all humans and for providing hope to those who need it. From Ed.

Making Room: Recovering Hospitality as a Christian Tradition

Although hospitality was central to Christian identity and practice in earlier centuries, our generation knows little about its life-giving character. Making Room revisits the Christian foundations of welcoming strangers and explores the necessity, difficulty, and blessing of hospitality today. Combining rich biblical and historical research with extensive exposure to contemporary Christian communities — the Catholic […]

Mother Teresa Goes to Washington

Mother Teresa On the last day, Jesus will say to those on His right hand, “Come, enter the Kingdom. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was sick and you visited me.” Then Jesus will turn to those on His left hand and say, […]

Fidelity: Five Stories

Wendell Berry The title short story, Fidelity, is a “must read” for health care workers. Here Berry portrays the argument of his essay, “Health is Membership” in compelling, fictional form, highlighting the hazards and limitations of technologized “McMedicine.” From Ed. Get this book.

Health is Membership

Wendell Berry Berry is a poet, essayist, novelist, and farmer from Kentucky. After reading work like this, you will realize that he is also something of a prophet. Wonderfully helpful for thinking about the meaning of health. From Ed. Delivered as a speech at a conference, “Spirituality and Healing”, at Louisville, Kentucky, on October 17, 1994 […]

Upholding the Vision: Serving the Poor in Training and Beyond

The Hebrew prophets described the flourishing that God intends for creation as shalom, which we could today translate as health in the deepest and most holistic sense.  And nowhere is the lack of shalom more evident today than some of the most broken and economically-deprived places.  We would do well to work toward to health […]

Reclaiming the Body: Christians and the Faithful Use of Modern Medicine

Joel Shuman and Brian Volck One of the best books dealing with the intersection of faith and medicine. Written by a Catholic pediatrician and a Methodist theologian. Very thought-provoking for medical professionals and “laity” alike, especially in its polemic against “medical Gnosticism. From Ed. Get this book.

Vulnerable Communion: A Theology of Disability and Hospitality

“In this excellent book Reynolds weaves his personal narrative into a complex cultural and theological exposition of the construction and theological practice of disability. . . . There is no doubt that Tom Reynolds has made a very useful contribution to the theology of disability in this work.”–John Swinton, Practical Theology As parents of a […]

The Wounded Healer: Ministry in Contemporary Society

The Wounded Healer is a hope-filled and profoundly simple book that speaks directly to those men and women who want to be of service in their church or community, but have found the traditional ways often threatening and ineffective. In this book, Henri Nouwen combines creative case studies of ministry with stories from diverse cultures […]

The Art of Dying: Living Fully into the Life to Come

How now shall we die? Death will come to us all, but most of us live our lives as if death does not exist. People are living longer than ever, and medicine has made dying more complicated, more drawn out and more removed from the experience of most people. Death is partitioned off to hospital […]

The Mystery of the Child (Religion, Marriage, and Family)

Martin E. Marty Drawing on literature as new as contemporary poetry and as old as the Bible, The Mystery of the Child encourages the thoughtful enjoyment of children instead of the imposition of adult will and control. Indeed, Marty treats the impulse to control as a problem and highlights qualities associated with children — responsiveness, […]

Death and Life in America: Biblical Healing and Biomedicine

Raymond Downing offers a bold critique of western medicine and sees medical care as one of the fallen “principalities and powers” in need of redemption. But Downing’s hope lies beyond biomedicine in biblical healing, especially the healing miracles of Jesus. In conversation with the Bible, Ivan Illich, William Stringfellow, Susan Sontag, and others, Downing revisits […]

Expecting Adam: A True Story of Birth, Transformation, and Unconditional Love

Expecting Adam is the beautifully written, poignant, achingly funny true story of John and Martha Beck, and of the extraordinary child they brought into the world. John and Martha were an exceptionally ambitious and driven all-American couple. With six Harvard degrees between them, and living in the refined and competitive atmosphere of the Harvard campus, […]

The Art of the Common Place: The Agrarian Essays of Wendell Berry

Art of the Commonplace gathers twenty essays by Wendell Berry that offer an agrarian alternative to our dominant urban culture. Grouped around five themes—an agrarian critique of culture, agrarian fundamentals, agrarian economics, agrarian religion, and geo-biography—these essays promote a clearly defined and compelling vision important to all people dissatisfied with the stress, anxiety, disease, and […]

Abortion, Theologically Understood

©1991 Taskforce of United Methodists on Abortion and Sexuality, Inc. Downloaded Nov 26, 2012 from Foreword Serious theological and moral reflection during a session of a United Methodist annual conference is about as rare as a March snow at Cape Hatteras. The word is rare, not impossible. During the l990 meeting of the North […]