Archives For Peace

 

[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”left” asin=”0814638228″ cloaking=”default” height=”333″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41K%2BZN7uMCL.jpg” tag=”douloschristo-20″ width=”216″ alt=”Timothy Wright” ]How Then do we Pray Together?

A Review of

No Peace Without Prayer: Encouraging Muslims and Christians to Pray Together, A Benedictine Approach

Timothy Wright

Paperback: Liturgical Press, 2014
Buy now: [ [easyazon_link asin=”0814638228″ locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”douloschristo-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Amazon[/easyazon_link] ] [ [easyazon_link asin=”B00GOBS736″ locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”douloschristo-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Kindle[/easyazon_link] ]

Reviewed by Amy Gentile and Liz Strout

 

Notes: This review, a fitting one for the Feast of St. Francis this weekend, was co-written by Amy Gentile and Liz Strout, who grew up in the same Baptist church and later converted to Eastern Orthodoxy and Sunni Islam, respectively. We read and discussed this book together, requesting it for review as we found the topic both timely and personally important.

 

Through the advent of technology, the world has grown increasingly more connected. We no longer have the privilege of remaining in isolated, homogenous communities (ethnic, religious, or sociopolitical). Ultimately, we would argue that’s a good thing, but it is not always easy, especially when there is a long-standing history of conflict and even violence. We must move forward with avenues of dialogue and peace-making, even when it is difficult. It is in this vein that Abbot Timothy Wright writes No Peace Without Prayer: Encouraging Muslims and Christians to Pray Together, A Benedictine Approach. He brings his experiences organizing dialogues between Catholic monks and Shi’a Muslims as well as a generous spirit to this text, setting forward a “framework, adaptable to the widely differing situations in which Muslims and Christians live side by side.” (16) This type of dialogue—whether between Christians and Muslims or any other differing communities—is a necessity in a globalized age, and we should all be echoing the call for dialogue, compassion, and ultimately peace.

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[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”left” asin=”0830836683″ cloaking=”default” height=”333″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41h-ESc1zoL.jpg” tag=”douloschristo-20″ width=”222″ alt=”Rick Love” ]Peace be With You.

A Review of

Peace Catalysts: Resolving Conflict in Our Families, Organizations and Communities

Rick Love

Paperback: IVP Books, 2014.
Buy now: [ [easyazon_link asin=”0830836683″ locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”douloschristo-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Amazon[/easyazon_link] ]  [ [easyazon_link asin=”B00HUCPSVC” locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”douloschristo-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Kindle[/easyazon_link] ]

Reviewed by James Stambaugh

 

I speak two dialects of Christianese.  I know Episcopalian: “the priest, wearing a chasuble over his alb, is in the narthex with the thurifer and crucifer.”  I also know evangelical.  I once had an evangelical college professor who was famous for his two points of contact handshakes (hand and elbow) coupled with the question: “How have you made Jesus real in your life today, brother?”  Another professor would preface every topic with, “The Lord has really been dealing with me today about…”

 

Rick Love is a rhetorical master of the evangelical dialect.  As a result, his latest book, Peace Catalysts, is a superb resource for convincing evangelical Christians of the importance of peacemaking both on an interpersonal and societal level.  It is a practical guide for peacemaking that is accessible to the average American churchgoer.

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[easyazon-image align=”left” asin=”B00F8P3A3G” locale=”us” height=”333″ src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51WHG1xGw6L.jpg” width=”222″ alt=”Peggy Faw Gish” ]The Way to New Life

A Review of

Walking Through Fire: Iraqis’ Struggle for Justice and Reconciliation

Peggy Faw Gish

Paperback: Cascade Books, 2014
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[easyazon-link asin=”B00F8P3A3G” locale=”us”]Kindle[/easyazon-link] ]

Reviewed by by Joe Davis

 

I’ve been a Christian for as long as I can remember but I still have trouble imagining peaceful alternatives to violent situations. Like Jesus’s disciple in the garden when the temple guards seized Jesus for arrest, I instinctively reach for my sword and start fighting back. I know Jesus calls me to love my enemies and turn the other cheek, but what else can I do when someone threatens me or those I love? In Walking Through Fire: Iraqis’ Struggle for Justice and Reconciliation, Peggy Faw Gish applies a healing balm to my wounded imagination and gives me eyes to see the way of Jesus through stories which “demonstrate that the power of nonviolent suffering love… is stronger than the way of violence and force, and can break down barriers and be transformative in violent or threatening situations.” Gish chronicles eight years of her journey alongside Iraqi people as an activist for peace with Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT). Along with her own reflections, she tells the stories of Iraqis who have endured nearly unbearable suffering, but who cling to hope and are still able to love each other and work together for a peaceful future.

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[easyazon-image align=”left” asin=”0836196309″ locale=”us” height=”333″ src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51gctDc%2BY3L.jpg” width=”222″ alt=”Logan Mehl-Laituri” ]The Beautiful and Horrible Realities of Human Existence

A Feature Review of :

For God and Country (In That Order):
Faith and Service for Ordinary Radicals

Logan Mehl-Laituri

Paperback: Herald Press: 2013
Buy now:  [ [easyazon-link asin=”0836196309″ locale=”us”]Amazon[/easyazon-link] ]  [ [easyazon-link asin=”B00GCHCKEE” locale=”us”]Kindle[/easyazon-link] ]

 

Reviewed by Dana Cassell

 

Midway through his newest book, For God and Country (In That Order), Logan Mehl-Laituri explains the title. “One can serve God and country (in that order), since the interests of each will sometimes overlap,” he says, but “the difficult task is discerning when those interests are opposed and acting in conflict with each other.” To that end, the book offers something of an anthology, stories of soldiers from antiquity to today who have served their countries and their God, sorting through allegiances that are sometimes in concert and other times in conflict. Mehl-Laituri himself categorizes this book as a “hagiographic almanac,” a collection of self-contained stories of holy people meant to form practitioners in the field of faithful discernment, those asking what it means to love both God and country.

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[easyazon-image align=”none” asin=”0972203567″ locale=”us” height=”300″ src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41Ai145ARgL.jpg” width=”218″ alt=”Julia Scatliff O’Grady – Good Busy” ]Making Our Peace With Time

 

A Feature Review of

Good Busy: Productivity, Procrastination, and the Endless Pursuit of Balance

Julia Scatliff O’Grady

Paperback: RCWMS, 2012.
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[ [easyazon-link asin=”B00BFYKSUM” locale=”us”]Kindle – Only $2.99![/easyazon-link] ]

 

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Reviewed by C. Christopher Smith

 

Time is man’s greatest challenge… Space is exposed to our will; we may shape and change things in space as we please.  Time, however, is beyond our reach, beyond our power.  It is both near and far, intrinsic to all experience and transcending all experience.
–  Abraham Joshua Heschel, from The Sabbath

 

One of the greatest challenges of writing a book on the idea of Slow Church is the straining to articulate our human relation to time, confessing our deep struggles to conquer it, and as Heschel observes in the above words, the ways that it ultimately eludes our control.  If we cannot conquer time, then our task is simply to make our peace with it (Heschel uses the language of “sanctifying” time, making it holy).

 

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Prophetic EvangelicalsContinued Improvisation Around a Common Theme

Prophetic Evangelicals: Envisioning a Just and Peaceable Kingdom

Malinda Elizabeth Berry, Peter Goodwin Heltzel and Bruce Ellis Benson, editors.

Paperback: Eerdmans, 2012.
Buy now: [ Amazon ] [ Kindle ]

Review by Daniel M. Yencich

Editors Benson, Berry, and Heltzel introduce Prophetic Evangelicals by situating it as a collection of answers to the common questions, What does it mean to follow Jesus? and What is the nature of the good news (euangelion)? The editors draw upon the imagery of a prism (a nod to the Evangelicals for Social Action publication?) to explain the format and intention of the book: “As the gospel – the light of Christ – passed through shalom, we can suddenly see the full spectrum of colors that represent the themes we explore in the rest of this book because they give prophetic faith its definition” (3). Prophetic evangelicalism is thus imagined to be a continued improvisation around a common theme (31), a collection of images of what it looks like to follow Jesus and embody the good news at the heart of truly evangelical faith.

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Lazarus Come Forth - John DearBe Converted.

A Review of

Lazarus, Come Forth:

How Jesus Confronts the Culture of Death and Invites us into the New Life of Peace.

John Dear, S.J.

Paperback: Orbis Books, 2011.
Buy now: [ Amazon ] [ Kindle ]

Reviewed by Stephen Taylor.

The Rev. John Dear is no newcomer to the world of peace and justice.  Many times in his life he has been arrested, mistreated, made fun of, and generally had a hard time because he does take a personal stand, based on faith in Jesus Christ, against what in this fine book he calls the culture of death.

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“Renouncing Violence and
Following the Peaceful Example of Jesus”

A Review of
Christian Peace and Nonviolence:
A Documentary History

Michael Long, Editor

Reviewed by Chase Roden.


Christian-Peace-and-NonviolenceChristian Peace and Nonviolence:
A Documentary History

Michael Long, Editor
Paperback: Orbis Books, 2011.
Buy Now:  [ Amazon ]

In this remarkable collection, Michael G. Long, associate professor of religious studies and peace and conflict studies at Elizabethtown College, chooses representative works from a diverse collection of authors throughout the history of the church to present a surprisingly coherent voice of peace and nonviolence from the body of Christ. As Long demonstrates, the message of peace is not a minor theme in the history of the church, but an essential element of our origins and future.

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“Reflecting on Christian Faithfulness
in a Post-9/11 World”

A review of
Who Is My Enemy?:
Questions American Christians Must Face
about Islam — and Themselves
.
by Lee Camp.

Review by Chris Smith.

Lee Camp - Who is my Enemy?Who Is My Enemy?:
Questions American Christians Must Face
about Islam — and Themselves
.
Lee Camp.
Paperback: Brazos Press, 2011.
Buy now: [ ChristianBook.com ]

This weekend marks the tenth anniversary of the tragedies of 9/11. In the days that followed, as we learned more about the men who coordinated the hijackings of planes and who crashed – or intended to crash – these planes into strategic landmarks including the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, there was a huge public outcry, not only against al-Qaeda, the terrorist group who claimed responsibility for the events of the day, but also against the Muslim faith at large. Public opinion of the Muslim community ranged from suspicion to vilification in those days and months following 9/11, which fueled rhetoric that can generally be characterized as depicting a grand conflict between Islam and the West.

As we remember, however, the events of a decade ago, it would serve us well to reflect on the emotions and rhetoric that prevailed in the American public in the months after 9/11. For those of us in the Church, one very helpful tool for such reflection is Lee Camp’s new book, the title of which asks the pointed question Who is My Enemy? Camp is professor of theology and ethics and Lipscomb University in Nashville who earned his PhD as a student of John Howard Yoder at Notre Dame, but is perhaps best known these days as the creator and organizer of the Tokens “Old Time Radio” stage show (Click here for our review of an earlier Tokens show). Camp is also the author of Mere Discipleship, which offers a poignant and compelling call to radically Christ-centered life in the contemporary world.

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In addition to the books reviewed above (Lee Camp’s WHO IS MY ENEMY? and Miroslav Volf’s ALLAH), here are a few books that would be useful in helping churches to reflect on what Christian faithfulness looks like in a post-9/11 world).

(Your purchase of any of these books helps to support the work of the ERB!  Thanks…)

834877: The War on Terror: How Should Christians Respond? The War on Terror: How Should Christians Respond?

By Nick Solly Megoran / InterVarsity Press

$1.99 —  *** SALE PRICE ***

432316: Christian Attitudes to War, Peace, and Revolution Christian Attitudes to War, Peace, and Revolution

By J.H. Yoder;
T.J. Koontz & A. Alexis-Baker, eds. / Brazos Press

$23.49

[ Read our review… ]

834900: The Gods of War: Is Religion the Primary Cause of Violent Conflict? The Gods of War:
Is Religion the Primary Cause of Violent Conflict?

By Meic Pearse / InterVarsity Press

$3.99 – *** SALE PRICE ***

208984: The Crusades Through Arab Eyes The Crusades Through Arab Eyes

By Amin Maalouf / Random House, Inc

$11.99

171420: Christianity and the Crisis of Cultures Christianity and the Crisis of Cultures

By Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger / Ignatius Press

$9.99

523700: The Saint and the Sultan: The Crusades, Islam, and Francis of Assisi"s Mission of Peace The Saint and the Sultan:
The Crusades, Islam, and Francis of Assisi’s Mission of Peace

By Paul Moses / Random House, Inc

$16.99

[ Read an  excerpt…]