October Book Recommendations

This month's list features a few well known authors alongside others worth getting to know.  All but the lowest rated book below are ones I heartily recommend to those engaged in lay and pastoral leadership roles in communities of faith focused on following the way of Jesus. (5+) Changing Faith: The Dynamics and Consequences of Americans' Shifting Religious Identities by Darren Sherkat (2014) (5) The Mainliner's Survival Guide to the Post-Denominational World by Derek Penwell Read More …

September Book Recommendations

Here are my book recommendations for the month when many families start a new school year, and most churches begin a new program year: (5) postChristian: What's Left? Can We Fix It? Do We Care? by Christian Piatt (2014) (5) Next: Pastoral Succession That Works by Warren Bird and William Vanderbloemen (2014) (4.5) Rough Country: How Texas Became America's Most Powerful Bible-Belt State by Robert Wuhtnow (2014) (4) Simplify: Ten Practices to Unclutter Your Soul by Bill Hybels Read More …

August Book Recommendations

Here are the ratings for my most recent reads: (4.5) Real Good Church: How Our Church Came Back from the Dead and Yours Can Too by Molly Phinney Baskette (2014) (4) The Question that Never Goes Away by Philip Yancey (2013) (4) Happy Professor: An Adjunct Instructor's Guide to Personal, Financial, and Student Success by Erin Lovell Ebanks (2014) (4) How to Be a Christian Without Going to Church: The Unofficial Guide to Alternative Forms of Christian Community by Kelly Bean Read More …

July Book Recommendations

The last few weeks have been a time of transition for me.  I have used the occasion to read the books in my "must read" stack, which had been growing for some time.  They follow in the order I have rated them (using a 1-5 scale). (5+) The Rebirthing of God: Christianity's Struggle for New Beginnings by John Philip Newell (2014) (5) We Make the Road by Walking by Brian D. McLaren (2014) (5) Sabbath as Resistance: Saying No to the Culture of Now by Walter Brueggemann (2014) (4.5) Got Read More …

Recent Reading – June

This is the final installment of my monthly posts sharing my ratings of some of the books I have recently read.  I plan to resume my normal routine of providing reviews next month. (5) Convictions: How I Learned What Matters Most by Marcus Borg (2014) (4) The Twilight of the American Enlightenment: the 1950s and the Crisis of Liberal Belief by George Marsden (2014) (3.5) Pastoral Work: Engagements with the Work of Eugene Peterson edited by Jason Byassee (2014) (3) Living with a Wild Read More …

Recent Reading – May

Busy is a buzzword.  It is, however, also an accurate description of my world at the moment.  With this in mind, I offer ratings rather than reviews for the last four books I read (listed by rating, on a scale of 5.0).  For those awaiting regular weekly reviews, stay tuned! I hope to return to that feature in July. (5+) The Next America: Boomers, Millennials, and the Looming Generational Showdown by Paul Taylor (2014). (5) Learning to Walk in the Dark by Barbara Brown Taylor Read More …

Recent Reading – April

My semester filled with far more to do than I have ever before experienced continues.  In this spirit, I offer ratings rather than reviews for the last four books I read (listed by rating, on a scale of 5.0). (5+) Belief Without Borders: Inside the Minds of the Spiritual but not Religious by Linda Mercadante (2014). (5) A Call to Action: Women, Religion, Violence, and Power by Jimmy Carter (2014). (4.5) Jesus: A Pilgrimage by James Martin (2014). (1.5) Mission Drift: The Unspoken Read More …

Review of The December Project

Meet the Author Sara Davidson is the New York Times bestselling author of eight books, including Loose Change (1997) and Leap!: What Will We Do with the Rest of our Lives? (2008).  Additionally, her writing has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, Harper's, The Atlantic, Esquire, and Rolling Stone. Book Basics (available tomorrow - March 25) Living in a community known for its unusually large numbers of retirees, I am well aware of the importance of finishing well.  While Read More …

Review of The Non-Violent Radical

Meet the Author Charles McCollough is an ordained United Church of Christ minister with a Ph.D. in theology, and an extensive background in art.  He worked for many years on the national staff of the UCC in the areas of adult education and social justice.  While pursuing that work, he studied sculpture at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Johnson Atelier, the Princeton Association, and Mercer College.  McCollough has taught and/or served as an artist in residence in numerous seminaries, Read More …

Recent Reading

In the quest to keep reading new material while balancing the demands of more "jobs" than I have ever held at one time, I have opted to forgo my normal weekly book reviews for the first half of the year.  When my interim pastoral ministry role is complete, I plan to resume those reviews. Today, I share four books I have read recently that I enjoyed enough that I will recommend them (listed by rating, on a scale of 5.0): (5) God for Us: Rediscovering the Meaning of Lent and Easter (2014), Read More …