Practicing Our Faith: A Way of Life for a Searching People, 2nd edition

edited by Dorothy C. Bass
San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publisher, Paperback-2010 {ISBN-047048411X}

The second, revised edition of Practicing Our Faith: A Way of Life for a Searching People has a new preface, two new chapters, and a study guide included.

"Practicing Our Faith is more than a book; it outlines a movement--God's movement--that is both as old as Abraham and as new as today's emerging Christianity. Here is a way to live the abundant life that is good news for our neighbors, sweet rest for our souls, and hope for a church too long fragmented by division. Like the preachers of the last great awakening, I want to shout, 'Get on board!'" 

                    —Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, new monastic, author, speaker


On Our Way: Christian Practices for Living a Whole Life

edited by Dorothy C. Bass and Susan R. Briehl
Nashville, TN: Upper Room Books, Paperback-2010 {ISBN: 0835810173}

Written for emerging adults, this book explores twelve practices particularly applicable to persons in their twenties: Study, Discerning God's Call, Living as Community, Friendship and Intimacy, Making a Good Living, Care for Creation, Honoring the Body, Singing Our Lives to God, Knowing and Loving Our Neighbors of Other Faiths, Peacemaking and Nonviolence, Doing Justice, and Living in the Presence of God.


ALSO AVAILABLE: Watch short video conversations with all 13 authors either online or on DVD


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Way to Live: Christian Practices for Teens

edited by Dorothy C. Bass and Don C. Richter
Nashville: Upper Room Books, Paperback-2002 {ISBN-0835809757}

Like its parent book Practicing Our Faith, this book advocates a set of Christian practices that are crucial to human well-being and that, together, shape a life well lived. Reflecting on and growing stronger in such practices, teens encounter the possibility of a more faithful way of life, one that is both attuned to present-day needs and taught by ancient wisdom. To deepen their insights and ground their images, adult authors partnered with teenaged colleagues throughout the planning and writing of Way to Live.


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Living into Community: Cultivating Practices That Sustain Us

by Christine D. Pohl
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Paperback-2011 {ISBN-13: 9780802849854}

Every church, every organization, has experienced them: betrayal, deception, grumbling, envy, exclusion. They make life together difficult and prevent congregations from developing the skills, virtues, and practices they need to nurture sturdy and life-giving communities.

In Living into Community Christine Pohl looks at four specific Christian practices — gratitude, promise-keeping, truth-telling, and hospitality — that can counteract these destructive forces and help churches and individuals build and sustain vibrant communities. Drawing on concrete congregational experiences and interacting with the biblical, historical, and moral traditions, Pohl thoughtfully discusses each practice, including its possible complications and deformations, and points to how these essential practices can be better cultivated within congregations and families.


Receiving the Day: Christian Practices for Opening the Gift of Time

by Dorothy C. Bass
San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publisher, Paperback-2001 {ISBN-0787956473}

For busy people who see time as an adversary to be managed, manipulated, and controlled, this book provides a fresh vision of time as a gift from God, waiting to be unwrapped and savored with true presence and delight.


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For Life Abundant: Practical Theology, Theological Education and Christian Ministry

edited by Dorothy C. Bass and Craig Dykstra
Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, Paperback-2008 {0802837441}

Theologians and pastors explore practical theology as an indispensable dimension of Christian faith and show how it can clarify and strengthen life-giving ways of life in and for the world.


Practicing Theology: Beliefs and Practices in Christian Life

edited by Miroslav Volf and Dorothy C. Bass
Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Paperback-2002 {ISBN-0802849318}

In a time when academic theology often neglects the lived practices of the Christian community, this volume seeks to bring balance to the situation by showing the dynamic link between the task of theology and the practices of the Christian life. The work of thirteen first-rate theologians from several cultural and Christian perspectives, these informed and informative essays explore the relationship between Christian theology and practice in the daily lives of believers, in the ministry of Christian communities, and as a needed focus within Christian education.


Honoring the Body: Meditations on a Christian Practice

by Stephanie Paulsell
San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publisher, Paperback-2002 {ISBN-078794856X}, Paperback-2003 {ISBN-0787967572}

This winsome book offers readers a much-needed guide for cherishing the human body and countering the corrosive cultural messages that prevent us from knowing that we are children of God in our bodies as in our spirits. Written for anyone who has struggled with weight gain and loss, body image, illness, birth and death, Honoring the Body does more than help us cope with these issues - it helps us enrich our practice of faith. Throughout this book, the author leads us on a remarkable journey born of gestures large and small, in ordinary life and in extraordinary circumstances, in every moment of every day. From Paulsell, we can learn how to regain a sense of awe and wonder about our bodies and to cultivate the healing practices that lead to joyful, mindful, and embodied living.


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Growing in the Life of Faith: Education and Christian Practices

by Craig Dykstra
Westminster John Knox Press, Paperback-2005 {ISBN-0664227589}

In this new edition of his popular book, Craig Dykstra explores the contributions of the traditions, education, worship practices, and disciplines of the Reformed Christian community in helping people grow in faith. Dykstra persuasively makes the case that the church has a wealth of wisdom about satisfying spiritual hunger and the desire to know God deeply - wisdom that offers coherent, thoughtful guidance in such diverse settings as congregational life, families, youth groups, and higher education. This new edition includes a study guide by Syd Hielema, a new foreword by Dorothy C. Bass, and a new preface by the author. The book is ideal for clergy, Christian educators, and all who are interested in finding guidance in their quest for a genuine encounter with God.


Holden Prayer Around the Cross

By Susan Briehl and Tom Witt
Minneapolis: Augsburg Fortress, Paperback-2009 {ISBN-0806696812}

Explore a flexible order for comtemplative prayer that was developed at the Holden Village retreat center in Washington state.  These authors present a wealth of practical suggestions for planning and leading such services.  This resource also includes fourteen liturgies in the Prayer Around the Cross format, designed for use at particular seasons or centered on certain themes.


Leading Lives That Matter: What We Should Do and Who We Should Be

edited by Mark R. Schwehn and Dorothy C. Bass
Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, Paperback-2006 {ISBN-082829317}

This anthology draws together a wide range of contemporary and classical texts -- including fiction, autobiography, and philosophy -- offering challenge and insight for those reflecting on what to do with their lives. Instead of giving prescriptive advice, Mark Schwehn and Dorothy Bass approach the vocational process as an ongoing conversation. They include in this conversation some of the Western tradition's best writings on human life -- its meaning, purpose, and significance -- ranging from ancient Greek poetry to contemporary American fiction. Includes works by such various figures as Aristotle, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Frederick Buechner, Willa Cather, Dorothy Day, Annie Dillard, Robert Frost, Abraham Heschel, Thomas Lynch, John Milton, Martha Nussbaum, Theodore Roosevelt, Amy Tan, William Butler Yeats, and many more; features Leo Tolstoy's novella The Death of Ivan Illych as an extended epilogue. Leading Lives That Matter will help readers clarify and deepen how they think about their own lives.

Read interview with editors Dorothy Bass and Mark Schwehn


Accompany Them with Singing: The Christian Funeral

by Thomas G. Long
Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, Hardcover - 2009 {ISBN-0664233198}

"To a culture accustomed to ‘obsequies-lite,’ Dr. Long prescribes a full-bodied liturgical and community theater—funerals equipped for the heavy lifting of Christianity—acting out our faith and humanity, bearing our dead to the brink of real and eternal life.  Accompany Them with Singing—The Christian Funeral is an indispensable and luminous guide for clergy, families, funeral directors—all home-going pilgrims—on how we ought to cope with death by dealing with our dead.  I think it will be the text of record on this subject for the next fifty years."
                                   ~Thomas Lynch, author of The Undertaking, winner of the 1998
                                      American Book Award and finalist for the National Book Award


Help: The Original Human Dilemma

by Garret Keizer
San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, Hardcover-2004 {ISBN- 0060560622}

What does it mean to help others? When does our help amount to hindrance? What informs our ideals of providing aid and how does doing so shape our character?  Drawing from history, literature, interviews, personal anecdotes, and parables such as the "Good Samaritan," this book invites us to ponder what is at stake whenever one human being tries to assist another.


Making Room: Recovering Hospitality as a Christian Tradition

by Christine D. Pohl
Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans Publishing Company, Paperback-1999 {ISBN-0802844316}

This book portrays how communities and individuals can be blessed and transformed by greeting, welcoming, and sheltering others - especially strangers - in the name of Christ. Although hospitality was central to Christian identity and practice in earlier centuries, our generation knows little about its life-giving character. Pohl traces the eclipse of this significant Christian practice, showing the initial centrality of hospitality and the importance of recovering it for contemporary life. Combining rich biblical and historical research with extensive exposure to modern service communities - The Catholic Worker, L'Abri, L'Arche, and others - this book shows how understanding the key features of hospitality can better equip us to faithfully carry out the practical call of the gospel.


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Mission Trips That Matter: Embodied Faith for the Sake of the World

By Don Richter
Nashville, TN: Upper Room Books, Paperback-2008 {ISBN-0835899470}

Explore Christian practices for pondering the body as your group prepares for, engages in, and interprets mission trips and outreach projects.  Life in the body is at the heart of Christian faith.  What wisdom might the Spirit whisper as mission team members get immunization shots, pack bags, fill water bottles, lace up walking shoes, strap on cameras, and pull out maps for the journey? Focusing on faith practices can shiift mission trips from being episodic and event-focused to be woven into the larger fabric of a way of life, weaving human activities into God's redemptive activity for the sake of the world.


A Song to Sing, A Life to Live: Reflections on Music as Spiritual Practice

by Don Saliers and Emily Saliers
San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publisher, Paperback-2005 {ISBN-0787967173}

Church musician and liturgical theologian Don Saliers joins with daughter Emily Saliers of Indigo Girls fame to reflect on the what, the how, and the why of music as a vital spiritual dimension of our lives. Don and Emily reflect on how music shapes our souls in relation to justice, grief, delight, healing, and hope. This book bridges two generations, two approaches to the life of faith, and two genres of music—the music of Saturday night and Sunday morning.


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Money Enough: Everyday Practices for Living Faithfully in the Global Economy

by Douglas A. Hicks
San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publisher, Paperback-2010 {ISBN-0787997757}

"If your eyes glaze over when you hear the word 'economics,' or if your eyelids droop when you hear the word 'theology,' don't fear.  Douglas Hicks integrates economics and theology with such clarity and accessibility that you'll see both in a new light: as vital resources to help us care for our global household with love and wisdom."

           — Brian McLaren, author of A New Kind of Christian and A Generous Orthodoxy


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A Way of Life in the World: Spiritual Practices for United Methodists

by Kenneth H. Carter, Jr.
Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, Paperback-2004 {ISBN- 0687022460}

A Methodist pastor explores six Christian practices that have been foundational for Wesleyan piety in the past and will continue to shape the Methodist movement in future years: singing, testimony, searching the scriptures, generosity with the poor, Holy Communion, and Christian conferencing.


Educating People Of Faith: Exploring the History of Jewish and Christian Communities

edited by John Van Engen, Foreword by Dorothy C. Bass
Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans Publishing Company Paperback-2004 {ISBN-0802849369}

Creates a vivid portrait of the lived practices that shaped the faith of Jews and Christians in synagogues and churches from antiquity up to the seventeenth century. Rather than focusing solely on either intellectual or social life, the authors all use the concept of “practices” as they attend to the embodied, contextual character of religious form.


Contributors: John C. Cavadini, Anne L. Clark, Lawrence S. Cunningham, Joseph Goering, Robert Goldenberg, Stanley Samuel Harakas, Robert M. Kingdon, Blake Leyerle, Michael A. Signer, Philip M. Soergel, David C. Steinmetz, John Van Engen, Lee Palmer Wandel, Robert Louis Wilken, Elliot R. Wolfsonation.


In the Midst of Chaos: Caring for Children as Spiritual Practice

by Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore
San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publisher, Hardcover-2006 {ISBN-0787976768}

Theologian, mother, and writer Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore gives us some answers to this question and shows us how to integrate and strengthen the practice of faith in the everyday -- and often mundane -- experience of raising children. In the Midst of Chaos reveals what it takes to find the spiritual wisdom in the messy, familial ways of living. By rethinking parenting as an invitation to discover God in the middle of our busy and overstuffed lives, it relieves parents of the burden of being the all-knowing authority figures who impart spiritual knowledge to children. Finding spirituality in family activities such as reading bedtime stories, dividing household chores, and playing games can empower parents to notice what they are already doing as potentially valuable and to practice it more consciously as part of their own faith journey.


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Singing the Lord's Song in a New Land: Korean American Practices of Faith

by Su Yon Pak, Unzu Lee, Jung Ha Kim, and Myung Ji Cho
Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, Paperback-2005 {ISBN-06622878X}

This groundbreaking book describes eight core practices within the Korean American church: keeping the sabbath, singing the faith, fervent prayer, remembering ancestors, shaping future generations, gathering at the well, fasting, and "ricing" the community.  An essential book for understanding ministry for Korean Americans within various Christian denominations.


Testimony: Talking Ourselves into Being Christian

by Thomas G. Long
San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publisher, Hardcover-2004 {ISBN-0787968323}

In this groundbreaking book, Tom Long -- a theologian and respected authority on preaching -- explores how Christians talk when they are not in church. Testimony breaks the stained-glass image of religious language to show how ordinary talking in our everyday lives -- talking across the backyard fence, talk with our kids, talk about politics and the events of the day -- can be sacred speech. In a world of spin, slick marketing, mindless chatter, and easy deceptions, Testimony shows that the hunger for truthful, meaningful, and compassionate speech is ultimately grounded in truth about God.


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Walkin' the Talk: Keepin' the Faith in Africentric Congregations

by Julia Speller
Cleveland, OH: The Pilgrim Press, Paperback-2005 {ISBN-0829815228}

This book examines how Christian faith shapes a way of life in three diverse congregations that embody an "Africentric spirituality": Imani Temple Christian Fellowship, First Afrikaner Presbyterian Church, and Trinity United Church of Christ. Drawing on the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa as interpretive lenses, the author analyzes how each church struggles with what it means to be both culturally Black and spiritually Christian.


© 2006-2011 The Valparaiso Project on the Education and Formation of People in Faith