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Howard Thurman

Today (Nov. 18) is the birthday of Howard Thurman, noted pastor and theologian.

To mark the occasion, we offer the following introductory reading guide to his most significant books.

We’ve ordered this list in the order that we think the books should be read, and offered a brief explanation of why each book was included. We’ve also included excerpts of most the books via Google Books.

 

1) Jesus and the Disinherited

Jesus and The Disinherited is Thurman’s best known work, and is an important theological work that builds upon the love of Jesus for the marginalized. 

“[Jesus and the Disinherited] is the centerpiece of the Black prophet-mystic’s lifelong attempt to bring the harrowing beauty of the African-American experience into deep engagement with what he called ‘the religion of Jesus.’ Ultimately his goal was to offer this humanizing combination as the basis for an emancipatory way of being, moving toward a fundamentally unchained life that is available to all the women and men everywhere who hunger and thirst for righteousness, especially those ‘who stand with their backs against the wall.’”
—Vincent Harding, from the Foreword

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HenriNouwen

This week marked the 20th Anniversary of Henri’s Nouwen’s death (Sept. 20).

In remembrance of his life, we have picked a few books of the many he published as a sort of introductory guide. 

 

1)  The Way of the Heart: Connecting with God Through Prayer, Wisdom, and Silence

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Art-of-LOTR

Today marks the anniversary of J.R.R. Tolkien’s death.

In honor of his life and work, we offer this reading guide to his works that flesh out the history and culture of Middle Earth, beyond the familiar Lord of the Rings Series.

How deeply have you read about Middle Earth beyond The Lord of the Rings? 

 

1) The Silmarillion

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Marva-Dawn

Today is the birthday of Marva Dawn, one of the theologians who has been most influential for our congregation at Englewood Christian Church.

To mark the occasion, we offer the following introductory reading guide to her most significant works.

We’ve ordered this list in the order that we think the books should be read, and offered a brief explanation of why each book was included. We’ve also included excerpts of most the books via Google Books.

 

 

1) Truly the Community: Romans 12 and How to Be the Church

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Flannery-Peacock

This week marked the anniversary of the death of Flannery O’Connor (3 August 1964), one of the greatest fiction writers of the twentieth century.

To mark the occasion, we offer the following introductory reading guide to her work.

We’ve ordered this list in the order that we think the books should be read, and we offer a brief explanation of why each book was included. We’ve included excerpts of most the books via Google Books.

*** Don’t miss these rare clips of
Flannery O’Connor reading her work 

 

1) The Complete Stories of Flannery O’Connnor

 
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Charleston-Syllabus

One of this week’s best new releases is:

The Charleston Syallbus:
Readings on Race, Racism, and Racial Violence
Chad Williams, Kidada Williams, Keisha Blaine, Eds.

Buy now: [ Amazon ]

This book captures a lengthy Twitter conversation, in the wake of the Charleston shootings, about essential readings on racism and racial violence. 

Included below are some of the readings that are excerpted in this new book. The book is divided into six sections and we offer at least one reading from each section.

 

Also of interest…
Our God is Too White?
Diversifying our Theological Reading

 

Section 1: Slavery, Survival and Community Building

Excerpt from Life of a Slave Girl
Harriet Jacobs.

Free Ebook of
LIFE OF A SLAVE GIRL
DOWNLOAD NOW

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Willie Jennings

A friend of mine recently posted this NY Times article about the lack of diversity in philosophy on his Facebook wall, and speculated that its argument might also apply to theology. 

 
When you read theology, how many of the theologians are white men?

As a means to start diversifying our theological reading, here are 10 important books by non-white theologians. These books will undoubtedly open the gates to a host of works by other authors.

 

Willie Jennings
The Christian Imagination: Theology and the Origins of Race

Listen to a talk that Jennings gave
at the Slow Church Conference in 2014.

 

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Much_ado

Last week, marked the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death.

In honor of the occasion, here are seven of our favorite film adaptations of Shakespeare’s play from the last 50 years…

#7 – Ten Things I Hate About You
    (Adaptation of Taming of the Shrew)

[ Stream the Movie via Amazon ]

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Rainforest

For Earth Day today, we offer a list of ten superb recent books on various facets of creation care that Christians should be reading…

 

Books of a variety of genres by authors like Wendell Berry, Norman Wirzba, Naomi Klein, Walter Brueggemann and MORE!

#1 From Nature to Creation: A Christian Vision for Understanding and Loving Our World
Norman Wirzba

One of the best theological resources on understanding creation, and how we live within it.

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Sojourner_truth

March is Women’s History Month, and while I am a bit queasy about relegating women’s history to a single month out of the year, it is a good time to remind ourselves that we need to be working harder throughout the year to know the stories of women who have followed faithfully in the way of Jesus.

 

Here are brief introductions to ten women saints (I use this term loosely to include other prominent women of faith, not just those who have been canonized by the Roman Catholic church) that you should be very familiar with. There are so many more faithful women that could have been included on this list. With the focus here on history, I have limited myself to saints who have lived prior to 1900.

Also, see:
Ten Essential Women Writers for Christian Readers

 
 

Perpetua (and Felicity)

Martyred c. 203 for her faith.

*** Books about Perpetua

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