December 2020 Selection

December 2020 Selection

We are delighted to tell you about our new book Getting Married in New Zealand by Gregory Hughson and Douglas Pratt. It contains options for creating Christian and secular weddings, te reo Māori ceremonies, and same-sex weddings. Available in print and as eBooks.

Other notable New Zealand releases include Te Hāhi Mihinare | The Māori Anglican Church by Hirini Kaa, and Sun, Moon, and Stars – Seasonal celebrations for children and families, tamariki and whānau by Juliet Batten.

We also feature several recent resource books published by Canterbury Press and Abingdon Press.

Heather’s and my choir Festival Singers is this week launching our digital album of
A Hopkins Gloria by well-known Wellington composer Jonathan Berkahn. There are details about ordering your copy at the bottom of this page.

for information about ordering and payment options, and our current postage charges.
For deliveries to Rural Delivery addresses an additional fee applies.
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[Prices, stock levels and estimated delivery time for titles on this page were last updated on 27 November 2020]

Getting Married in New Zealand – Te Mārenatanga ki Aotearoa: 

A guide to creating wedding and birth celebrations.
Gregory Hughson; Douglas Pratt.
Pbk 174pp. ISBN 9781988572611.
Philip Garside Publishing Ltd (2020).
[In stock].

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This book has everything you need to plan and create a wedding ceremony and celebration that is right for you.

The authors have many years’ experience of offering couples a multi-choice format upon which to construct their marriage ceremony. The essence of the book is flexibility and adaptability to individual circumstances.

For each key part of your wedding ceremony there are many text options to choose from. Combine them or use them as a starting point to write your own text.

The book includes templates and information for:

  • Christian and secular weddings
  • te reo Māori ceremonies
  • same-sex weddings
  • a Tibetan Buddhist ceremony, and
  • guidance about what to expect at a Moslem wedding.

Combine them or use them as a starting point to write your own text.

The authors also provide guidance about wedding receptions, including toasts, speeches and, things to avoid.

Based on their long experience of conducting wedding celebrations and working with couples, they also offer advice about building strong marriage relationships.

In short, this book is:

    • ideal for celebrants to share with couples
    • ideal for couples to plan their own unique celebration
    • a helpful gift for couples preparing to marry
    • for couples seeking to deepen their marriage relationships, and
    • for theology, ministry and religious studies students

Te Hāhi Mihinare | The Māori Anglican Church.
Hirini Kaa.
Pbk 352pp. ISBN 9780947518752.

Bridget Williams Books (2020). 
[Allow 2 weeks].

This ground-breaking book explores the emergence of Te Hāhi Mihinare – the Māori Anglican Church. Anglicanism, brought to New Zealand by English missionaries in 1814, was made widely known by Māori evangelists, as iwi adapted the religion to make it their own. The ways in which Mihinare (Māori Anglicans) engaged with the settler Anglican Church in New Zealand and created their own unique Church casts light on the broader question of how Māori interacted with and transformed European culture and institutions.

 Hirini Kaa vividly describes the quest for a Māori Anglican bishop, the translation into te reo of the prayer book, and the development of a distinctive Māori Anglican ministry for today’s world. Te Hāhi Mihinare uncovers a rich history that enhances our understanding of New Zealand’s past.

The arrival of the Anglican Church with its claims to religious power was soon followed by British imperial claims to temporal power. Political, legal, economic and social institutions were designed to be the bastions of control across the British Empire. However, they were also places of contestation and engagement at a local and national level, and this was true of New Zealand. Māori culture was constantly capable of adaptation in the face of changing contexts.

Ko Aotearoa Tātou | We Are New Zealand.
Michelle Elvy; Paula Morris; James Norcliffe eds.
Pbk 280pp. ISBN 9781988592527

Otago University Press (2020).
[Allow 2 weeks]

Ko Aotearoa Tātou | We Are New Zealand is bursting with new works of fiction, nonfiction, poetry and visual art created in response to the editors’ questions: What is New Zealand now, in all its rich variety and contradiction, darkness and light? Who are New Zealanders?

The works flowed in from well-known names and new voices, from writers and artists from Kerikeri to Bluff. Some are teenagers still at school; some are in their eighties. Māori, Pākehā, Pasifika, Asian, new migrants, young voices, queer writers, social warriors.

Aotearoa’s many faces are represented in this unique and important compendium. In a society where the arts, especially marginalised arts, are under threat, this anthology shows that creative work can explore, document, interrogate, re-imagine – and celebrate – who we are as citizens of this diverse country, in a diverse world.

Sun, Moon, and Stars:
Seasonal celebrations for children and families, tamariki and whānau.
Juliet Batten.
Pbk 214pp. ISBN 9780473550455.
Ishtar Books, NZ (2020). 

[Allow 2 weeks].

Would you like to help the children in your world grow up with a deep connection to nature and the rhythms of life? Sun, Moon, and Stars will show you how.

For over two years, Juliet Batten guided her family and others through celebrating eight markers in the seasonal cycle. Her account, together with those of her contributors, results in a book that is inspiring and practical. By following the simple steps she outlines, you too can enjoy creating rituals to enhance the lives of your family and the young ones you care for.

“This is a beautifully written, practical book which will inspire a sense of wonder, joy and sacred connection to nature, to one another, and to our deepest selves.” Dr. Kathyn Rountree, Professor Emeritus, Anthropology of Ritual and Belief.

 “Sun, Moon, and Stars is told with a magical rhythm and rhyme, enveloping the rich warmth of rangimārie me te aroha (peace and love). Juliet captures the beautiful synchronicity between cultures in the minds of our tamariki.” Jill Williams, celebrant and educator

“Juliet’s writing sings through the seasons, gently urging us to join her in celebrating the Southern Hemisphere festivals that have lain dormant in so many of us for too long. The information for each season is laid out simply, and the accompanying stories from parents and children are a delight. I sincerely hope this book will become a treasured resource in many families, as well as in schools and childhood centres.” Sharon Holt, author of Te Reo Singalong books

Take a Minute – 2
(Colour Throughout).
Rosie Staite.
Pbk 120pp. ISBN 9780473523770.
Tried and True Resources (2020). 
[2 in stock].

In our rapidly changing world, where do you find peace and inspiration, food for thought, a bit of encouragement?

Rosie is a Timaru based Anglican church lay minister and liturgist. Her words and photos will help you to find the holiness in everyday moments, draw strength in tough times, celebrate unexpected joy, and reflect on global change. Keep it close by to delve into or give it to a friend.

An ideal gift and coffee table book.

Come and See:

Learning from the life of Peter.
Stephen Cottrell.
Pbk 160pp. ISBN 9781800390195.

Bible Reading Fellowship (2020).
[Allow 4 weeks].

When we look at the life of Peter – fisherman, disciple, leader of the church – we find somebody who responded wholeheartedly to the call to ‘come and see.’ Come and meet Jesus, come and follow him, come and find your life being transformed.

This book focuses on Peter, not because he is the best-known of Jesus’ friends, nor the most loyal, but because he shows us what being a disciple of Jesus is actually like. Like us, he takes a step of faith and then flounders, and needs the saving touch of God to continue becoming the person he was created to be.

Come and See provides a pattern of Bible reading, reflection and prayer. 28 readings, arranged in four sections, offer short passages from the story of Peter, plus comment and questions for personal response or group discussion. 

The Mystery of Faith:
Exploring Christian Belief
John-Francis Friendship.
Pbk 144pp. ISBN 9781786221803.

Canterbury Press (2019).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

The Mystery of Faith explores the essentials of Christian belief and the ancient spiritual practices that enable us to live and flourish in the light of God’s grace. It is written for those who are new to the Christian faith, are curious about it, want to understand their faith better or make more meaningful connections between faith and life.

Using the structure of the Apostles Creed it offers clear explanations of core beliefs through the God we encounter in creation, in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit who makes God known in our world and in our lives today.

Friendship draws on the riches of the Christian tradition and his own experience of Religious life to introduce practices that guide our daily living as God’s people: prayer, scripture, the sacraments, worship, the company of saints.

Throughout, questions for reflection and discussion make this an ideal resource for faith formation for individual and groups.

The Well-Gardened Mind:
The Restorative Power of Nature.
Sue Stuart-Smit.
Hbk 352pp. ISBN 9781476794464.

Scribner Book Company (2020).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

The garden is often seen as a refuge, a place to forget worldly cares, removed from the “real” life that lies outside. But when we get our hands in the earth we connect with the cycle of life in nature through which destruction and decay are followed by regrowth and renewal. Gardening is one of the quintessential nurturing activities and yet we understand so little about it.

The Well-Gardened Mind provides a new perspective on the power of gardening to change people’s lives. Here, Sue Stuart-Smith investigates the many ways in which mind and garden can interact and explores how the process of tending a plot can be a way of sustaining an innermost self.

A distinguished psychiatrist and avid gardener offers an inspiring and consoling work about the healing effects of gardening and its ability to decrease stress and foster mental well-being in our everyday lives.

Stuart-Smith’s own love of gardening developed as she studied to become a psychoanalytic psychotherapist. From her grandfather’s return from World War I to Freud’s obsession with flowers to case histories with her own patients to progressive gardening programs in such places as Rikers Island prison in New York City, Stuart-Smith weaves thoughtful yet powerful examples to argue that gardening is much more important to our cognition than we think. Recent research is showing how green nature has direct antidepressant effects on humans.

Essential and pragmatic, The Well-Gardened Mind is a book for gardeners and the perfect read for people seeking healthier mental lives.

A Practical and Pastoral Companion.
Anthony Priddis.
Pbk 136pp. ISBN 9781786221384.

Canterbury Press (2019).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Every day we hear stories of people caught up in conflict, violence, trauma and abuse, which can affect anyone in any walk of life. Each of us needs to offer forgiveness as well as receive it, but how?

Designed to accompany everyone on a personal or communal journey of forgiveness, this companion also offers an important resource for all engaged in listening, reconciliation and pastoral care, including clergy, counsellors and spiritual directors.

It explores:

  • Why forgiveness is important?
  • What forgiveness is?
  • Who can forgive?
  • Offering forgiveness
  • Receiving forgiveness
  • How communities respond to tragedy
  • God’s forgiveness.

The Great Belonging:
How Loneliness Leads Us to Each Other.
Charlotte Donlon.
Pbk 192pp. ISBN 9781506461960.

Broadleaf Books (2020).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Loneliness has reached epidemic proportions, according to many sources. In an age of mobility and fraying civic life, we are all susceptible to its power. But what if loneliness is a necessary part of the human condition? What if it is a current that leads us deeper into belonging – to ourselves, to each other, and to God?

 Spiritual director Charlotte Donlon reframes loneliness and offers us a language for the disquiet within.

Instead of turning away from the waters of loneliness for fear they will engulf us, she invites us to wade in and see what we find there. In vulnerable, thoughtful prose, Donlon helps us understand our own occasional or frequent loneliness and offers touchpoints for understanding alienation. We can live into the persistent questions of loneliness. We can notice God’s presence even when we feel alone in our doubts. Ultimately, Donlon claims, we can find connection that emerges from honesty, and she offers tools, resources, and practices for transforming loneliness into true belonging.

Making Peace with Conflict in the Church
Alastair McKay.
Pbk 144pp. ISBN 9781786221414.

Canterbury Press (2019).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

There is a prevailing culture of ‘niceness’ within churches which can lead to conflict avoidance, suppression and denial. Consequently, ministers and church leaders often struggle to handle tensions, difference and competing demands within their congregations.

 Drawing on practical theology, conflict theory, family systems theory and experience, Bridgebuilding will help church ministers and church members find more fruitful ways of engaging with tensions and conflicts in the life of the Church. It offers numerous practical tools for transforming conflict into opportunities for personal and corporate growth.


Creative Ideas for Worship with All Abilities:
In Association with l’Arche.
Hazel Bradley; Jim Cargin.
Pbk 192pp. ISBN 9781786221193.

Canterbury Press (2020).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

This vital resource draws on the vast experience of the L’Arche community to offer practical guidance and ideas for imaginative worship that engages people with learning and other disabilities.

It explores the essential considerations of pastoral work with those with learning disabilities, as well as patterns of prayer and worship that are most appropriate. It offers practical ideas for enabling participation and building familiarity while keeping worship fresh and varied, with ready-to-use themed service outlines for use throughout the Christian year.

It offers a compendium of resources for creating your own acts of worship, including prayers, blessings, stories, quotes, a directory of online resources, ideas for what to keep in a ‘liturgy box’, ideas for seasonal decoration of the worship space and many more resources from L’Arche.

Said I Wasn’t Gonna Tell Nobody:
The Making of a Black Theologian
James H Cone.
Pbk 192pp. ISBN 9781626983779.

Orbis Books (2020).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

James Cone is widely regarded as the “father of Black Theology” – his own synthesis of Gospel message embodied by Martin Luther King, Jr., and the black pride of Malcolm X. Next year marks the 50th anniversary of his first book, Black Theology and Black Power ($52.00).

This new work is truly the capstone to that career, showing how he was compelled by events to articulate this theology, how it led to his career at Union and his succession of books – along the way learning from his critics, his students, and the ongoing challenge of his principal models – King, Malcolm X, and James Baldwin.

Preaching with All Ages:
Twelve Ways to Grow Your Skills and Your Confidence.
Ally Barrett.
Pbk 144pp. ISBN 9781786221711. Canterbury Press (2019).

[Allow 3-4 weeks].

The all-age talk is a task guaranteed to give preachers sleepless nights! Very few people feel they have a gift for it, and most lack confidence. This reflective and practical guide addresses these concerns, and aims to build a sure theological understanding, develop skills and grow confidence.

Twelve chapters explore different kinds of engagement – with the senses, with one another, with oneself, with scripture, with liturgy, with the church, with God, with challenging situations, and more – to enable preachers make real connections with their listeners, whatever the age.

Each chapter is followed by a practical case study illustrating key principles and providing down-to-earth, tried and tested wisdom for all kinds of contexts and occasions.

Soul Friendship:
A Practical Theology of Spiritual Direction
Adrian Chatfield; Nigel Rooms.
Pbk 256pp. ISBN 9781786221568.

Canterbury Press (2019).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Spiritual direction is a burgeoning ministry in today’s church where the emphasis is on joining in with what God is already doing in the world – an approach that presupposes spiritual discernment.

This guide explores spiritual direction from biblical and theological perspectives and aims both to inform teaching and equip practitioners with greater reflective skills.

Written by two experienced teachers and practitioners, it includes:

  • God and Spiritual Direction – divine presence and absence, discerning God, relationship and the Trinity, images of the Holy Spirit
  • Humanity and God – being made in the image of God, sin, addiction, desire, freedom, psychology in direction
  • The Bible and Spiritual Direction – scripture as a source and authority for direction; uses and abuses of the Bible in direction
  • Spiritual Direction across the Christian traditions
  • Spiritual Direction and the Church – boundaries, accountability and safeguarding.

The End Is Always Near:
Apocalyptic Moments from the Bronze Age Collapse to Nuclear Near Misses.
Dan Carlin.
Pbk 288pp. ISBN 9780062868053.

Harper Paperbacks (2020).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Do tough times create tougher people? Can humanity handle the power of its weapons without destroying itself? Will human technology or capabilities ever peak or regress? No one knows the answers to such questions, but no one asks them in a more interesting way than Dan Carlin.

Combining his trademark mix of storytelling, history and weirdness Dan Carlin connects the past and future in fascinating and colourful ways. At the same time the questions he asks us to consider involve the most important issue imaginable: human survival. From the collapse of the Bronze Age to the challenges of the nuclear era the issue has hung over humanity like a persistent Sword of Damocles.

Six Steps for Effective Pastoral Conversations.
Denise Massey.
Pbk 166p. ISBN 9781501884580.

Abingdon Press (2019).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Caring will help ministers and pastoral care givers solve one of their most significant problems. They are called upon to “fix” all manner of human problems, and this expectation often leaves them feeling overwhelmed, highly stressed, or woefully unprepared. Help is available! Massey will teach readers how to coach people to access their own spiritual and personal resources, invoking both God’s help and the person’s own deep inner wisdom.

The six steps of the CARING process can transform ministry conversations from floundering and uncertain to powerful and effective. These steps of facilitating powerful problem-solving conversation are ones that the minister and the person receiving care take together. The acronym CARING will help the minister remember both the steps and the ultimate purpose of the conversation.

  • C  Connect with God, self, and others.
  • A  Attend to the journey and assess the need.
  • R  Reach clarity about the realistic focus for this conversation.
  • I   Inspire the development of a loving action plan.
  • N  Navigate around obstacles to the plan.
  • G  Generate commitment to a specific, loving action plan.

Celebrate Wonder Bible Storybook. Brittany Sky.
Hbk 320pp. ISBN.9781501897252.
Abingdon Press (2020).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

A colourfully illustrated children’s Bible storybook that will engage the children through simple storytelling and open-ended questions that encourage the children to wonder about the Bible story and make connections between the Bible and their lives. Includes 150 stories!

Life in Christ:
The Core of Intentional Spirituality.
Steve Harper.
Pbk 176pp. ISBN 9781791004705.

Abingdon Press (2020).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Harper helps us recognise our tendency to search for life through rules and dogmas rather than in relationships with other people and with God. By living in relationship, we live as enlivened Christians, the abundant life God intends for us and the life we long for.

Harper encourages us to see the spiritual life as a movement, where we are always on the way, taking steps forward to continually align our lives with Christ. He shows us how Christ can be the goal and pattern for our lives, motivating us to live as God’s beloved and as instruments of God’s love.

Harper provides a wealth of helps, including a set of questions for reflecting on each chapter, a discussion guide for conversing about the book in a group, and extensive reading lists for further enrichment.

Becoming New:
Finding God Within Us and in Creation.
Anselm Grun; Leonardo Boff.
Pbk 168pp. ISBN 9781626983311.

Orbis Books (2019).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Two leading theological and spiritual writers, one from Germany and the other from Brazil, exchange reflections on the nature and presence of God. While Anselm Grun puts more emphasis on finding God within us, Leonardo Boff focuses more on God’s presence in the unfolding story of the universe.

But they agree that both dimensions must be brought together and that the essence of God is love.

Our choir Festival Singers is this week launching our digital album of
A Hopkins Gloria by well-known Wellington composer Jonathan Berkahn.

You can order the music files in three formats, (mp3, flack or wave), either on the choir’s website here:

Each month we choose a selection of titles that we think you will find stimulating and satisfying to read. So come back to the Monthly Selections section of our website regularly.

Are you looking for a specific book?

Please also ask us to find any other books you are interested in. We will give you a price and time to deliver. Emailing us at  works best.