Tag Archives: books

For the Bookshelf: Urban Disciples

By Israel Galindo, Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning

Jenell Paris and Margot Eyring have prepared a most useful tool for those involved in missional efforts, whether leader or participant. Urban Disciples: A Beginner’s Guide to Serving God in the Inner City (Valley Forge, PA: Judson Press, 2000), is a workbook for persons or teams participating in, or planning on engaging in, urban mission experiences. The content is adaptable for various kinds of missions groups, including, as listed by the authors, “church Bible study groups, college ministry groups, small groups, cell groups, urban plunge programs, short-term mission projects, urban ministry courses at seminaries and colleges, and people in the first years of long-term ministry.” Continue reading For the Bookshelf: Urban Disciples

Books, Tablets, E-readers and Typewriters

By Israel Galindo, Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning

Well, the debate about physical books vs. e-readers is on again. Recent articles about the pros and cons between books and digital books and “research-based” articles arguing the case against e-readers have cropped up, with passionate readers on either side of the argument. Then, there are those like me, who scratch their head about the assumption of a forced choice. For us, it’s not either-or.
Continue reading Books, Tablets, E-readers and Typewriters

For the Bookshelf: Becoming a Healthier Pastor

By Robert L. Dibble

In 1996, Fortress Press published one of the more helpful resources in examining positive congregational relationships and the overall quality of church life, namely, Ronald W. Richardson’s Creating a Healthier Church. His application of Bowen family systems theory to congregational life enormously clarified emotional processes on the order of Edwin Friedman’s Generation to Generation (Gilford Press, 1985) and Roberta Gilbert’s Extraordinary Relationships (Wiley, 1992). Thankfully, all of these fine works are getting increasing use in seminaries to train and equip ministers for more effective church ministry. Continue reading For the Bookshelf: Becoming a Healthier Pastor

For the Bookshelf: A Failure of Nerve

By Israel Galindo, Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning

The re-issue of Edwin Friedman’s final work (unfinished at the time of his death), A Failure of Nerve: Leadership in the Age of the Quick Fix (New York: Seabury Press, 2007. 260 pages. $28.00. ISBN 978-1-59627-042-8), is quintessential Friedman. While there is repetition from his other works, most notably Generation to Generation, in this volume one can see the author’s attempt to fine-tune his thinking about Bowen Family Systems Theory in its application to areas outside of the theory’s main focus on clinical therapy. to the field of leadership. Indeed, in certain brilliant sections there is evidence of the author striking out into new thinking. In this book Friedman applies the concept of “leadership” broadly. A leader is any person who occupies that position in whatever system he or she functions, whether a family, business, congregation, or political body. This is in keeping with the concept that leadership is a matter of emotional process related to function rather than title, expertise, or official position.

Continue reading For the Bookshelf: A Failure of Nerve

For the Bookshelf: Beyond the Ordinary

By Israel Galindo, Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning

Ben Campbell Johnson and Andrew Dreitcer provide a welcome resource to congregations in practical spirituality in Beyond the Ordinary: Spirituality for Church Leaders.  The book’s unique contribution is in fleshing out of classical Christian spirituality in the context of congregational leadership. In doing so, the authors move spirituality away from the individualistic expressions that remains prevalent today, and into a corporate dimension more in keeping with the communal nature of the church.

In addition, the intentional attention to an underlying theology of discipleship that calls for a shared ministry between clergy and laypersons can be a revolutionary challenge to most clergy-dependent congregations. In this way Johnson and Dreitcer call for greater responsibility from the laity for their personal spirituality and for a way of congregational leadership grounded in spiritual principals and disciplines. Continue reading For the Bookshelf: Beyond the Ordinary