Wholehearted Faith by Rachel Held Evans and Jeff Chu (HarperOne, £20 (Church Times SPECIAL OFFER PRICE £16); 978-0-06-289447-2).
“At the time of her death in 2019, Rachel Held Evans was working on a new book about wholeheartedness. With the help of her close friend and author Jeff Chu, that work-in-progress has been woven together with some of her other unpublished writings into a rich collection of essays that ask candid questions about the stories we’ve been told — and the stories we tell —about our faith, our selves, and our world. This book is for the doubter and the dreamer, the seeker, and the sojourner, those who long for a sense of spiritual wholeness as well as those who have been hurt by the Church but can’t seem to let go of the story of Jesus. Through theological reflection and personal recollection, Rachel wrestles with God’s grace and love, looks unsparingly at what the Church is and does, and explores universal human questions about becoming and belonging. An unforgettable, moving, and intimate book.”
A Redemption Song: Illuminations on Black British pastoral theology and culture by Delroy Hall (SCM Press, £22.99 (Church Times SPECIAL OFFER PRICE £18.39); 978-0-334-06072-7).
“Drawing from real-life pastoral examples, socio-political analysis, and the theme of eucharist as a means to human healing and restoration, A Redemption Song outlines and explores what a black British pastoral theology might look like. A landmark text, it offers critical reflection and practical tools for those working and ministering within multicultural communities, especially those with large African-Caribbean populations.”
A Pilgrimage of Paradoxes: A backpacker’s encounters with God and nature by Mark Clavier(T & T Clark, £19.99 (£17.99); 978-0-567-70356-9).
“Mark Clavier examines a series of paradoxes that lie at the heart of Christian faith: eternity and time, silence and words, and wonder and the commonplace. In an intellectual reflection on an overnight trek on Cadair Idris, in Wales, and other wilderness walks, he explores the oft-hidden connections between faith, society, and nature. Each reflection ranges widely through history, folklore, poetry, philosophy, and theology to consider what these paradoxes can teach us about God, ourselves, and our world. Drawing on the recent upsurge in interest in the personal experience of landscapes and memory, this book invites readers to walk with Clavier in the Appalachians, Norway, Iceland, the Alps, and around Britain as he discovers the ways in which Christianity is profoundly earthed. By weaving together nature-writing, memoir, social commentary, and theological reflection, A Pilgrimage of Paradoxes uses a memorable mountain journey in the ancient landscape of Wales to draw readers into reflecting about what it means to belong.”
Selected by Frank Nugent, of the Church House Bookshop, which operates the Church Times Bookshop.