Book Recommendations – August 2017

After sharing book recommendations rather irregularly for some time, I offered 10 recommendations in June, 10 in July, and now offer another 10 this month. The following ten books have all been published in 2017. They are rated on a 1-5 scale.  The rare exceptional book warrants a 5+. (5+) The Financial Diaries: How American Families Cope in a World of Uncertainty by Jonathan Morduch and Rachel Schneider (Princeton University Press, 2017) (5.0) Why God?: Explaining Religious Read More …

Review of Not Less than Everything

Meet the Editor Catherine Wolff served as director of the Arrupe Center for Community-Based Learning at Santa Clara University.  She is married to Tobias Wolff, an author and professor. Book Basics Not Less than Everything is a one of a kind book that features many voices, including "contemporary journalists, novelists, scholars and poets" (p.5).  Each author contributes a single short chapter about a saint -- formally recognized by the Catholic Church or unofficial yet Read More …

Becoming a Rebel Leader

Sister Joan Chittister is a progressive Benedictine nun, a prolific author, and sought after speaker.  She recently gave the baccalaureate address at  Stanford University.  In this moving speech on leadership, she shared these words with the graduates and all who were gathered: No, the world does not really need the skills you learned here. Today's skills will all change in the next five years and change your life with them. The world does not need answers either. Answers are easy to come Read More …

The Light of Lent

Prolific author and progressive religious leader Sister Joan Chittister, recently shared an excerpt from her short book Journey into Light in a Lenten article for the Huffington Post.  She concludes that article with these powerful words: The light of Lent is the beacon that enables us to see under the obvious, the systemic, the hypocritical in both state and church to the evil they mask from us. It is the path to integrity, to righteousness, to the Spirit of God. So What? Lent is a season Read More …

Top 11 Books Published in 2011

For the second year (last year's list is available here) I offer my list of the "top 10 books published this year."  Since this is 2011, I have expanded the list to include eleven titles. Aboujaoude, Elias Virtually You: The Dangerous Powers of the E-Personality Borg, Marcus Speaking Christian: Why Christian Words Have Lost Their Meaning and Power – And How They Can Be Restored Chaves, Mark American Religion: Contemporary Trends Chittister, Joan Happiness Kinnaman, Read More …

Review of Happiness

Meet the Author Sister Joan Chittister is a member of the Benedictine Sisters of Erie, PA, where she served as prioress for 12 years.  She is a social psychologist with a doctorate from Penn State University, the founder of Benetvision (an organization that exists to encourage the development of contemporary spirituality from a feminist and global perspective through her work), regular columnist for National Catholic Reporter, and a sought after speaker.  Chittister presently serves as the Read More …

Review of Unlearning Protestantism

Schlabach, Gerald W.  Unlearning Protestantism: Sustaining Christian Community in an Unstable Age.  Brazos Books, 2010.  ISBN: 9781587431111. Meet the Author Gerald W. Schlabach is an associate professor of theology and director of the Justice and Peace Studies program at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota.  He is the founder and currently serves as the executive director of Bridgefolk, which is a movement of Mennonites and Roman Catholics who come together to explore each other's Read More …