Mid-January 2019 Selection

Mid-January 2019 Selection

The selection below includes books on the life and work of NZ’s Kim Workman and that of Jean Varnier founder of L’Arche. There are books on eco-theology, and thoughtful new books by Rowan Williams and Walter Brueggemann. And John Spong’s Unbelievable is now out in paperback.

Please click this link for our 2019 Lent and Easter list


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[Prices, stock levels and estimated delivery time for titles on this page were last updated on 29 January 2019]

Journey Towards Justice.
Kim Workman.
Pbk 278pp. ISBN 9780947492533.

Bridget Williams Books (2018).  
[Allow 7-10 days].

Jazz musician, policeman, public servant, prison manager, prominent campaigner for restorative justice – Kim Workman’s life is full of passion and spirit, research and writing, action and commitment.

Kim’s visionary work in justice reform began when he became director of Prison Fellowship New Zealand, and ultimately found expression in the Rethinking Crime and Punishment project and in supporting the activist group JustSpeak.

His thinking draws on both his Christian faith and his Māori heritage: he was instrumental in establishing one of the first faith-based prison units, and his understanding of restorative justice draws strongly on Māori customary practice.

This is an eloquent account of a life that is at once ordinary and exceptional, told with warmth and honesty.

A Cry Is Heard:
My path to peace.
Jean Vanier.
Pbk 144pp. ISBN 9780232533910.

Darton Longman + Todd (2018).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

“This book was born from a sense of urgency. Faced with the sad divisions, fears, wars and inequalities of our world, and the depression and despair of so many young people, I have dared to share with you a way of hope. In the course of my life, it is people with an intellectual handicap who have little by little transformed me and freed me from my own fears, revealing my own humanity to myself. A path towards unity, fraternity and peace is possible. The future depends on each one of us,” writes Varnier.

This is the closest Jean Vanier has come to writing a spiritual autobiography. Through the stories of his childhood, the foundation of L’Arche, and his relationship with significant figures such as Pope John Paul II, Pope Francis, Mother Teresa and Dorothy Day, Vanier teaches us the lessons of his life, his own psychological barriers and struggles, and a profound message of hope for the future.

The Great Mystery:
Science, God and the Human Quest for Meaning
Alister McGrath.
Pbk 256pp. ISBN 9781473634336.
Hodder & Stoughton (2017).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Theologian Alister McGrath and Andreas Idreos Professor of Science and Religion at Oxford University, explore the question of human nature from both scientific and religious perspectives.

They weave together the results to open up and explore some of the deepest and most important questions about: Who are we? Why are we here? What is our future? Are we alone? And what can religion bring, alongside biology and anthropology, to these important and exciting questions?

Faith Forever Singing – Music Book. Reprinted January 2019.
NZ Hymnbook Trust.
Spiral binding 200pp.
NZ Hymnbook Trust (2018). 

[35+ in stock]

Click here to order

We are delighted to have this popular New Zealand hymn collection back in stock.

In includes 80 hymns and responses, with words, music and guitar chords, meditations by Joy Cowley and poems by James K Baxter and Shirley Murray.

Contributors include: Marnie Barrell, Bill Bennett, Jillian Bray, Barry Brinson, Joy Dine, Colin Gibson, Beverley Jones, Judy Mills, Shirley Murray, Ian Render, Cecily Sheehy

Fig Trees and Furnaces:
Biblical stories, scripts and reflections Esther to Maccabees.
Ruth Burgess.
Pbk 224pp. ISBN 9781849526203.
Wild Goose (2018).
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Based on the biblical books from Esther to Maccabees, this is a collection of stories, scripts and reflections written by Iona Community members, associates, friends and others. 

There are some beautiful stories in the Bible and there are some hideous stories as well. What do we do with them? Do we tell them in Sunday school? Do we omit them from the lectionary? Do we try to explain them?

Stories are important. 

Stories are powerful.

Teach us, God, to read the Bible 
with wisdom and integrity.
Tell us, in the light and in the darkness, 
the stories we need to hear.

(This is a companion volume to Olives and Obligations, which is based on the books from Genesis to Nehemiah.)

Can Science Make Sense of Life? 
Sheila Jasanoff.
Pbk 156pp. ISBN 9781509522712.

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

How far can science go in making sense of what “life” means to human beings and societies? This book looks at flash points in law, politics, ethics, and culture – artificial reproduction, stem cell research, gene drives, the creation of synthetic organoids – to argue that the claims of rewriting life are overblown.

Science may have editorial authority over one of the books of life, but not over the entire library that defines the values that have held us together through human history: the meanings of autonomy, integrity, and privacy; the bonds of kinship and family; and the place of humans in nature.

They Will Inherit the Earth:
Peace and Nonviolence in a Time of Climate Change.
John Dear.
Pbk 176pp. ISBN 9781626982642.
Orbis (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

“This is a remarkable testimony summing up a remarkable life: nonviolence is our greatest tool, and here you see it wielded with kindness, firmness, and skill.” Bill McKibben

In the Beatitudes, Jesus says of the meek, “they will inherit the earth.” Meekness, John Dear argues, is the biblical word for nonviolence.

Drawing on personal stories of his life in the desert of New Mexico, his time as a chaplain at Yosemite, his friendship with indigenous and environmental leaders, his experience at the Standing Rock protests, as well as his work with the Vatican on a new stance on nonviolence, John Dear invites us to return to nonviolence as a way of life and a living solidarity with Mother Earth and her creatures.

Holy Rover:
Journeys in Search of Mystery, Miracles, and God.
Lori Erickson.
Hbk 260pp.
ISBN 9781506420714.
Fortress Press (2017).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

Erikson writes about the transformative power of travel. If you’ve ever been curious about the ancient spiritual practice of pilgrimage, come along as she explores a dozen holy sites around the world.

Travel writer, Episcopal deacon, and author of the Holy Rover blog at Patheos, Erickson is an engaging guide for pilgrims eager to take a spiritual journey. Both irreverent and devout, Holy Rover describes travels that changed her life and can change yours, too.


Clueless in Galilee:
A Fresh Take on the Gospels.
Mac Barron.
Pbk 112pp.
ISBN 9781681922348.
Our Sunday Visitor (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

Mac Barron assures us that Jesus loves us, even though we’re human. We know this, because the Bible says so. Over and over and over again. With its hilarious, sometimes irreverent, and always humble reflections, this book will make you laugh and help you look at the Bible and yourself in a whole new way.

READER ALERT: Three things to know about this book before you buy it:

  1. If you can’t handle jokes about Jesus being cranky when he was hungry – turn back now.
  2. If you think that the disciples were perfect men – prepare to be disillusioned.
  3. If you think Jesus only has really smart and gifted people for friends – guess again.

“Funny and off-kilter in the best way, Mac Barron will help you look with fresh eyes at people in the Bible you thought you knew and discover that they were all too human.” Bishop Robert Reed, The Catholic TV Network

Creation and Hope:
Reflections on Ecological Anticipation and Action from Aotearoa New Zealand.
Nicola Hoggard Creegan & Andrew Shepherd eds. 

Pbk 232pp. ISBN 9781532609732. Pickwick Publications (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

As we witness a possible sixth great mass-extinction, there is increasing awareness of the fragility of life on this planet. What is the nature of Christian hope in this context?

St Paul declares that all of creation “will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.”

How are we to imagine this “freedom” when death and decay are essential to biological life as we currently experience it, and when the scientific predictions for life are bleak at best?

This book explores these questions, reflecting on how our traditions shape our imagination of the future, and considering how a theology of hope may sustain Christians engaged in conservation initiatives.

“This collection of essays brings to an international readership, threatened by climate change, the voices of those whose hope-filled eco-theology is profoundly informed by their context of Aotearoa, New Zealand. Readers will encounter the braided rivers of the Canterbury plains, the A Rocha project to restore biodiversity to Mount Karioi, and the animal in Derrida’s Bible. These and other such engagements are brought into creative dialogue with biblical text and theological tradition. A rich new contribution.” Elaine Wainwright, Professor Emerita, University of Auckland

Christ the Heart of Creation.
Rowan Williams.
Hbk 304pp. ISBN 9781472945549.
Bloomsbury Continuum (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

In this wide-ranging book, Williams argues that what we say about Jesus Christ is key to understanding what Christian belief says about creator and creation overall.

Through detailed discussion of texts from the earliest centuries to the present day, we are shown some of the various and subtle ways in which Christians have discovered in their reflections on Christ the possibility of a deeply affirmative approach to creation, and a set of radical insights in ethics and politics as well.

Williams draws on insights from Eastern Christianity, from the Western Middle Ages and from Reformed thinkers, from Calvin to Bonhoeffer – as well as considering theological insights sparked by philosophers like Kierkegaard and Wittgenstein. He writes with clarity and shows his gift for putting across what are inevitably complex ideas to a wide audience.

Tenacious Solidarity:
Biblical Provocations on Race, Religion, Climate, and the Economy.
Walter Brueggeman.
Pbk 619pp. ISBN 9781506447704.

Fortress Press (2018).
(Price increased 29 Jan 19)

[Allow 2-3 weeks].

Essays and new writings from 2014 to 2018.

Brueggemann brings the “transformative potential” of the biblical texts to bear on critical contemporary contexts, including but not limited to economic disparities, racial injustice and white supremacy, climate and care for creation, and the power of memory and mentoring.

He delves deeply in the Psalms, which he says, “provides a foundational script for living into the fullest and deepest realities of human existence.”

And he draws from the Prophets his foundational concept of totalism, which he defines as “automated fragmentation of social life such that we habitually and callously disregard our relations with others.”

Why Neither Ancient Creeds Nor the Reformation Can Produce a Living Faith Today.

John Shelby Spong.
Pbk 320pp. ISBN 9780062641304.

HarperOne (2019).
[1 in stock]. 

Five hundred years after Martin Luther and his Ninety-Five Theses ushered in the Reformation, bestselling author and controversial bishop and teacher John Shelby Spong delivers 12 forward-thinking theses to spark a new reformation to reinvigorate Christianity and ensure its future.

With its revolutionary resistance to the authority of the Church in the 16th century, Spong sees in Luther’s movement a model for today’s discontented Christians. In fact, the questions they raise resonate with those contemplated by our ancestors.

Does the idea of God still have meaning? Can we still follow historic creeds with integrity? Are not such claims as an infallible Pope or an inerrant Bible ridiculous in today’s world?

Spong has enlightened Christians and challenged them to explore their beliefs in new and meaningful ways. In this, his final book, he continues that rigorous tradition, once again offering a revisionist approach that strengthens Christianity and secures its relevance for generations to come.

Church, Creation, and the Common Good:
Guidance in an Age of Climate Crisis. Ragan Sutterfield; Emily Sutterfield.
Pbk 64pp. ISBN 9781640651111.

Church Publishing (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

This youth and adult study engages participants in how we should now live into this time of climate change crisis, and offers a hopeful answer to climate challenges through scripture, tradition, and Christian practice.

It guides Church communities into deeper understanding of their role as the Church in the world and how they might be communities for the Common Good in this time.This resource will foster rich conversations and provide a path toward love of all Creation and our particular places as we face the climate crisis together.

The Lion and the Bird.
Marianne Dubuc.
Hbk 64pp.

ISBN 9781592701513.
Enchanted Lion Books (2014).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

One autumn day, a lion finds a wounded bird in his garden. With the departure of the bird’s flock, the lion decides that it’s up to him to care for the bird. He does and the two become firm friends. Nevertheless, the bird departs with his flock the following autumn.

What will become of Lion and what will become of their friendship?

The snow increases until all the animals can see is white. Ages approx. 4-8 years.

Christian Leadership.
Maxie Dunnam.
Pbk 144pp. ISBN 9781501883118.

Abingdon Press (2019).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

The bedrock grounding of church leaders is in God. This grounding comes through deliberate and explicit attention to God through prayer and self-reflection.

Christian leadership, begins with self-leadership – clarifying our own heart, whole being, and mind in order to find and show that our most basic identity and deepest and most concrete security lie in God.

Not in success or in pleasing someone else or in being seen as a good person or being loved by a congregation or the faith community we lead.

Contents include:

  • The Vocation of Leadership
  • The Shape of Our Vocation
  • Lessons From the Saints
  • What is Good Ministry?
  • The Persons We Are and the Institutions We Serve
  • The Preacher and Preaching
  • Taking Care of Ourselves in the Everyday
  • Time: It’s Ours to Receive, Use, and Manage
  • Staying Alive All Our Ministry Life

Just Begin:
A Sourcebook of Spiritual Practices.
Dann E Wigner.
Pbk 256pp. ISBN 9781640650626.

Church Publishing (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

Wigner introduces readers to more than 40 different practices from Eastern and Western traditions, encompassing everything from mindfulness to music, yoga to the Lord’s Prayer. In each short description, the focus is to “just begin” to practice and experiment, grow, and develop spiritually on the way.

No one can take a journey without taking the first step, and Dr. Wigner provides the first steps for multiple practices in various religious traditions. These spiritual exercises will help spur people of faith to deeper self-awareness, holistic living, and prayer.

The book’s sections are organised around types of practices: Meditating, Listening, Being, Sensing, and Embodying, with a final section: Doing.

Each chapter forms a short 3-5 page introduction to a mystical practice, consisting of segments on definition, background, how to practice, resources for further study, journal prompts and discussion questions, and common problems that sometimes “get in the way” of one’s practice.

Every Step an Arrival: 

A 90-Day Devotional for Exploring God’s Word
Eugene H Peterson.
Hbk 192pp. ISBN 9781601429735.
Waterbook Press (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

Take 90 days and walk through the pages of the Bible with a definitive voice in Christian spirituality.

Eugene Peterson, author of The Message Bible provides brief commentary and challenging thoughts designed to stir the biblical imagination and encourage even the weary believer.

When God Made Light.
Matthew Paul Turner; David Catrow (Illustrator).
Hbk 48pp. ISBN 9781601429209.
Waterbook Press (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

“Let there be light!” That’s what God said. And light began shining and then started to spread. Wild and creative illustrations from top children’s illustrator David Catrow pair with Matthew Paul Turner’s lyrical verse in this message of a God-made light that cuts through darkness to bring vision and hope to all young readers.

This light radiates, chasing away the shadows, providing the wonder and fun of stargazing or firefly chasing. Most important, this light appears in each child – an inner God-given spark that grows and will be used to change the world.


The Shattering of Loneliness:
On Christian Remembrance.
Erik Varden.
192pp. ISBN 9781472953285.
Bloomsbury Continuum (2018).
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

In this profound meditation on loneliness and humanity, Erik Varden, a Trappist monk, uses a range of sources – from Aristophanes and Virgil through Athanasius and Bernard of Clairvaux to Hammarskjöld, Akhmatova and Makine – to illuminate his themes of loneliness and remembrance.

He examines six facets of Christian remembrance, complementing biblical exegesis with readings from literature, ancient and modern. It aims to be an essay in theology. At the same time, it proposes a grounded reflection on what it means to be a human being.

The Shattering of Loneliness is an extraordinary book: not too long but richly dense; profound in its insights and scholarship yet eminently readable; and though clearly written by a monk happy to be a monk, it has as much relevance to the ordinary Christian as to the Trappist monks in the author’s care.” Catholic Herald

Other recent email newsletters

Click here for:
Lent and Easter 2019 resources 

Year C – 2019 Devotional, Worship and Preaching resources
Including Fresh From the Word 2019

And click here for links to our other recent selections.

Stock list on our website

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Specials on Trade Me

We have over 150 titles loaded on Trade Me, many of which are now reduced to $5.00 or less (but only while stock lasts). These are all in stock now. 50 are listed as auctions at any one time. They are all Buy Now only, so order straight away to secure your books. The listings last 5 days, so come back every few days to see a fresh list.
Click here for our current listings on TradeMe.

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