Because we are such a community of readers, I thought some of you might be interested in knowing what’s on my reading list for the coming year.
Reclaiming Prophetic Witness: Liberal Religion in the Public Square by Paul Rasor. This is the UUA’s “Common Read” title for 2014-15.
A Nun on the Bus: How All of Us Can Create Hope, Change, and Community by Sister Simone Campbell. Sister Simone was the Ware Lecturer at this year’s Unitarian Universalist General Assembly, and I was deeply moved by her talk. I want to learn more!
Not for Ourselves Alone: Theological Essays on Relationship edited by Laurel Hallman and Burton Carley. Individualism comes more easily to Unitarian Universalists than interdependency, and I welcome this new resource for exploring our commitments to something besides ourselves.
Uncommon Community: One Congregation’s Work with Prisoners by John Speer. This slim volume describes the work of one of our UU congregations in Texas, and I want to read it as part of deepening my understanding of issues pertaining to mass incarceration in our country. (This book is available at the UUA Bookstore.)
Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brené Brown. Brené Brown studies vulnerability, courage, authenticity, and shame. Her 2010 TEDx talk on the power of vulnerability is one of the 20 most viewed talks on TED.com. This year’s worship theme “The Gifts of Imperfection” come from Brown’s book of the same name, and Daring Greatly goes deeper into that subject material.
Universalists and Unitarians in America: People’s History by John Buehrens. This book came out after I graduated from seminary, and it’s time I got around to reading it.
Finally, during my study leave in late October, I will travel to the U.S.-Mexico border as part of an immigration justice trip with the Unitarian Universalist College of Social Justice. As part of my preparation for that trip, I have homework (oh boy!) that includes reading the following two books:
- Trails of Hope and Terror: Testimonies on Immigration by Miguel de la Torre
- Justice in a Global Economy: Strategies for Home, Community, and World edited by Pamela Brubaker
I have bookshelves filled with books I would like to read, but the many demands of ministry mean that I can only read a handful of titles each year. The books I read inevitably inform my preaching and my ministry, and this list represents the themes and ideas that feel the most urgent to me just now. Perhaps something from my reading list might make its way onto yours.
Bright blessings, Sharon