Archives For Fenelon


The Wake Up CallThe Wake Up Call –
7 January 2013

Like the smell of strong coffee wafting down the hall, we offer a few book-related thoughts and stories to jumpstart your day…


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“Genuine good taste consists in saying much in few words, in choosing among our thoughts, in having order and arrangement in what we say, and in speaking with composure.”  – Theologian François Fénelon, who died on this day in 1715
[ Our recent review of Francois Fenelon: A Biography ]


“A thing is mighty big when time and distance cannot shrink it.”  Author Zora Neale Hurston, born on this day 1891|
*** [easyazon-link keywords=”zora neale hurston” locale=”us”]Books by Zora Neale Hurston[/easyazon-link]


“The artist is extremely lucky who is presented with the worst possible ordeal which will not actually kill him. At that point, he’s in business.” – Poet, John Berryman, who died on this day in 1972.
*** [easyazon-link keywords=”John Berryman” locale=”us”]Books by John Berryman[/easyazon-link]


Book News:

Thanks be to God for this new day, may it be full of beauty and grace!

The Wake Up Call image via WikiMedia Commons

Continue Reading…


Sustainablog Review of
Scott Sabin’s new book
Tending to Eden: Environmental Stewardship for God’s People

For the environmentalist who doesn’t ground his/her passion, advocacy, and work in faith, Tending to Eden is replete with stories of eco-effectiveness. Plant with Purpose serves rural communities in the developing world, and much of their work focuses on replenishing depleted resources that keep farmers from producing enough to feed their families and communities.

For Sabin and his organization, that often comes down to a focus on deforestation. Whether trees are cut by large, industrial-scale timber operations or by indigenous farmers clearing land for crops, or turning wood into charcoal, the results are the same: degraded soils and watersheds that make even subsistence farming nearly impossible. Various kinds of reforestation activities serve to provide food, expand economic opportunity, and allow local residents to take a longer view towards their own survival.

Read the full review:

Tending to Eden:
Environmental Stewardship for God’s People.

Scott Sabin.

Paperback: Judson Press, 2010.
Buy now:  [  Amaz0n ]

Gabriel Thompson’s
Working in the Shadows:
A Year of Doing the Jobs (Most) Americans Won’t Do

The jobs that Gabriel Thompson writes about in Working in the Shadows: A Year Doing the Jobs (Most) Americans Won’t Do make even the worst jobs I’ve held seem like a month at the country club. Donning workingman’s clothes, Thompson tackles jobs that, frankly, I wouldn’t even consider before reaching a significant level of desperation. In the course of picking lettuce in the fields of Yuma, Arizona, and hauling chicken parts around a processing facility in Russellville, Alabama, (among other occupations) Thompson explores this segment of American labor like a latter-day E. P. Thompson, relating their lives and working conditions with a minimum of editorial intrusion.

Gabriel Thompson’s agenda is neither one of the white man’s burden or migrant worker agitprop. Rather, he simply takes these jobs and reveals to the reader their backbreaking and often mentally stultifying requirements, at times performed in harsh (but not inhuman) environments. After weeks of picking lettuce, Thompson hasn’t gotten that much better at the job nor gotten past the pain that bending over repeatedly in the hot sun creates as much as he has “[forgotten] what it’s like to not be sore.” While working in the frigid poultry plant, he aspires to be promoted to the de-boning department, which, while more toilsome and monotonous, is less physically demanding than hauling around buckets full of chicken remains.

Read the full review:

Working in the Shadows:
A Year of Doing the Jobs (Most) Americans Won’t Do
Gabriel Thompson.

Hardback: The Nation Books, 2009.
Buy now:  [ Amazon ]

Mark Noll Reviews Patricia Ward’s
Experimental Theology in America.
on the newly redesigned BOOKS AND CULTURE website.

Patricia Ward’s meticulously researched history uncovers a surprisingly extensive vein of Protestant (usually, evangelical Protestant) engagement with the mystical piety of late 17th-century French Roman Catholics. An early leader of that engagement was John Wesley, who attended to the French mystics carefully on the question of assurance and who later excerpted works of Madame Jeanne Guyon and François Fénelon for the Christian Library he prepared so his Methodist itinerants could read while they rode. In the 19th century, appreciative readers included the Presbyterian minister William E. Boardman, the moral philosopher Thomas Upham, and the pioneering holiness preacher Phoebe Palmer. In the 20th century, A. W. Tozer included several poems of Madame Guyon in his anthology, The Christian Book of Mystical Verse, and Moody Press was one of several evangelical publishers who kept her works in print.

Read the full review:

Experimental Theology in America:
Madame Guyon, Fenelon, and Their Readers
Patricia A. Ward
Hardback: Baylor University Press, 2009
Buy now: [ Amazon ]