News, Theology

Fifteen Important Theology Books of 2022!!!

As the end of 2022 draws near, we highlight some of the most important theology books released this year…

Although some of these theology books will appear on our Advent calendar of 2022’s Best Books (and no, we won’t reveal here which ones will be on that list), we won’t say that these are the 15 BEST theology books — just that they are important ones that should be widely read and discussed… 

We feature our theology book of the year first, and after that the remaining book are in alphabetical order by the author/editor’s last name….  

 *** What one book would you add to this list?

Towards Friendship-Shaped Communities: A Practical Theology of Friendship

Anne-Marie Ellithorpe


A unique and incisive exploration of the place and nature of friendship in both its personal and civic dimensions

In Towards Friendship-Shaped Communities: A Practical Theology of Friendship, distinguished theological researcher Anne-Marie Ellithorpe delivers a constructive and insightful exploration of the place and nature of friendship as innate to being human, to the human vocation, and to life within the broader community. Of particular interest to members and leaders of faith communities, this book responds to contemporary concerns regarding relationality and offers a comprehensive theology of friendship.

The author provides an inclusive and interdisciplinary study that brings previous traditions and texts into dialogue with contemporary contexts and concerns, including examples from Indigenous and Euro-Western cultures. Readers will reflect on the theology of friendship and the interrelationship between friendship and community, think critically about their own social and theological imagination, and develop an integrative approach to theological reflection that draws on Don Browning’s Fundamental Practical Theology.

Integrating philosophical, anthropological, and theological perspectives on the study of friendship, this book presents:

  • A thorough introduction to contemporary questions on friendship and discussions of co-existing friendship worlds
  • Comprehensive explorations of friendship in first and second testament writings, as well as friendship within classical and Christian traditions
  • Practical discussions of theology, friendship, and the social imagination, including explorations of mutuality and spirit-shaped friendships
  • Considerations for outworking friendship ideals within communities of practice, from the perspective of strategic (or fully) practical theology

Perfect for graduate and advanced undergraduate students taking courses on friendship or practical theology, Towards Friendship-Shaped Communities: A Practical Theology of Friendship will also earn a place in the libraries of scholars of practical theology and community practitioners, including ministers, priests, pastors, spiritual advisors, and counselors.

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Reading for the Common Good
From ERB Editor Christopher Smith

"This book will inspire, motivate and challenge anyone who cares a whit about the written word, the world of ideas, the shape of our communities and the life of the church."
-Karen Swallow Prior

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