By Ted V. Foote Jr. and P. Alex Thornburg 2000. Geneva. 80 pp. Pb. $12.95. ISBN 0-664-50109-5
Reviewed by Sallie Watson, Austin, Texas
"Being Presbyterian in the Bible Belt" is pithy, witty and well-organized. So much did I enjoy it that I bought five copies to give to my Austin, Texas, high school graduates this year. Although Ted and Alex claim the "Bible belt" as the arena for this, their first book together, I would recommend this book to my former youth groups in California and Utah in a heartbeat.
By George Gallup Jr. and Michael Lindsay Morehouse. 1999. 171 pp. Pb. $ 17.95. ISBN 0-9192-1796-4
Reviewed by Edward A. White, Washington, D.C.
This study reflects the glaring incongruities of the religious situation in the United States today. Religion in general (whatever that may mean) remains popular but for many there is little substance.
By Elizabeth-Anne Stewart Sheed & Ward, 1999. 242 pp. Pb. $15.95. ISBN 1-58051-061-2
Reviewed by Herb Meza, Jacksonville, Fla.
The theme of this book is the reconciliation of folly and holiness. In beautifully written paragraphs, folly is described not as foolishness or buffoonery, but as vulnerability; risk above safety; truth above security; love above self-gain; and celebration over somberness. (Harvey Cox's "A Feast of Fools" and Henri Nouwen's "Clowning in Rome" play upon the same theme.)
By Jack Rogers Geneva. 1999. 151 pp. Pb. $10.95. ISBN 0-664-50046
Reviewed by Theodore J. Wardlaw Atlanta
In every Presbyterian ordination service for elders, deacons or ministers of the Word and Sacrament, a series of huge, life-sized questions are asked. One of them, which trips off the tongue with deceptive ease, is: "Will you fulfill your office in obedience to Jesus Christ, under the authority of Scripture, and be continually guided by our confessions?"
By James H. Moorhead. Indiana University Press. 1999. 26 pp. $29.95. ISBN 0-253-33580-9
Reviewed by George Laird Hunt Lakeland, Fla.
From the latter part of the 19th century through the first quarter of the 20th, mainstream Protestantism's post-millennial stance (that Christ will return after a "thousand years of earthly bliss," p. xi) led to strenuous efforts toward bringing in the kingdom of God and the evangelization of the world "in this generation." It was a period of social reform, social progress, which, at a later date, led to movements toward social justice.
By Stanley M. Hauerwas and William H. Willimon. Abingdon. 1999. 144 pp. Pb. $10. ISBN 0-687-08202-1
Reviewed by Nathaniel S. Murrell Wilmington, N.C.
What should one expect of a book titled The Ten Commandments in Christian Life, published in 1999 when hysteria pervaded the media over a "Bible Belt" idea of posting the Ten Commandments on the walls of an Alabama courtroom?
By Nile Harper Eerdmans. 1999. 334 pp. Pb. $25. ISBN 0-8028-4441-3
Reviewed by Carl S. Dudley, Hartford, Conn.
If churches were portraits, this book would be a national museum. Urban Churches, Vital Signs offers a magnificent gallery of verbal portraits of city ministries, with the brilliant colors illuminating the artistry of those who are doing the job.
By Henry C. Simmons and E. Craig MacBean Prime. 2000. 232 pp. Pb. $24.95. ISBN 0-9668813-1-1
Reviewed by Richard Lyon Morgan Morganton, N.C.
Not a week passes that someone doesn't ask me about some of the issues discussed in this book. Older persons wonder, "Where will I live when I can no longer stay in my own home?" or "How can I handle the spiraling cost of home health care or long-term care?" Adult children ask, "What will our parents do when they can no longer manage by themselves?" or "Isn't there some way to get our parents to make their own decisions about later life now?"