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Preaching as Resistance: Voices of Hope, Justice, and Solidarity

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As nationalism, patriarchy, and alt-right fear-mongering threaten our troubled nation, the pulpit has again become a subversive space of sacred resistance. In this provocative and powerful collection of sermons from diverse pastors across America, hear the brave and urgent voice of Christians calling for radical change rooted in love, solidarity, and justice. Preaching as As nationalism, patriarchy, and alt-right fear-mongering threaten our troubled nation, the pulpit has again become a subversive space of sacred resistance. In this provocative and powerful collection of sermons from diverse pastors across America, hear the brave and urgent voice of Christians calling for radical change rooted in love, solidarity, and justice. Preaching as Resistance resists, confronts, and troubles the dangerous structures of authoritarianism and oppression crashing in from all sides - and proclaims the transformation, possibility, and hope stirring in the gospel of Christ. From big-steeple churches in big cities to rural congregations in red states, preaching as resistance is practiced in a wide variety of social contexts and preaching styles, inspiring and equipping listeners to respond to the call of justice. Ideal for pastors and church leaders, Preaching as Resistance also provides the opportunity to experience hopeful, welcoming Christian voices rooted in the gospel values of love, solidarity, and justice. In these challenging times when Christianity is so often misrepresented, misunderstood, and misused for unjust agendas, take heart and find your own voice in this collection of resistance sermons from everyday pastors across the country.


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As nationalism, patriarchy, and alt-right fear-mongering threaten our troubled nation, the pulpit has again become a subversive space of sacred resistance. In this provocative and powerful collection of sermons from diverse pastors across America, hear the brave and urgent voice of Christians calling for radical change rooted in love, solidarity, and justice. Preaching as As nationalism, patriarchy, and alt-right fear-mongering threaten our troubled nation, the pulpit has again become a subversive space of sacred resistance. In this provocative and powerful collection of sermons from diverse pastors across America, hear the brave and urgent voice of Christians calling for radical change rooted in love, solidarity, and justice. Preaching as Resistance resists, confronts, and troubles the dangerous structures of authoritarianism and oppression crashing in from all sides - and proclaims the transformation, possibility, and hope stirring in the gospel of Christ. From big-steeple churches in big cities to rural congregations in red states, preaching as resistance is practiced in a wide variety of social contexts and preaching styles, inspiring and equipping listeners to respond to the call of justice. Ideal for pastors and church leaders, Preaching as Resistance also provides the opportunity to experience hopeful, welcoming Christian voices rooted in the gospel values of love, solidarity, and justice. In these challenging times when Christianity is so often misrepresented, misunderstood, and misused for unjust agendas, take heart and find your own voice in this collection of resistance sermons from everyday pastors across the country.

37 review for Preaching as Resistance: Voices of Hope, Justice, and Solidarity

  1. 5 out of 5

    Robert D. Cornwall

    Preaching in the Age of Trump (that's the title of a book, but not this one) is not easy. It's never easy preaching, but this seems to be an especially difficult time for preachers, who seem to face one crisis after another. We hear constantly from some colleagues on Facebook that if we're not addressing this action or statement by the President or some other figure, we should be shunned by congregations and colleagues. I've resisted being bullied into being a reactive preacher, but I do want to Preaching in the Age of Trump (that's the title of a book, but not this one) is not easy. It's never easy preaching, but this seems to be an especially difficult time for preachers, who seem to face one crisis after another. We hear constantly from some colleagues on Facebook that if we're not addressing this action or statement by the President or some other figure, we should be shunned by congregations and colleagues. I've resisted being bullied into being a reactive preacher, but I do want to address the issues of our day through the lens of scripture and my faith. In "Preaching as Resistance" my Disciples of Christ colleague Phil Snider has gathered up a collection of thirty sermons that address the issues of the day, some of which emerged in the aftermath of the Trump election, but not all of them. Phil is the pastor of Brentwood Christian Church in Springfield, Missouri. He has authored several books, and organized one other sermon collection. The preachers and teachers included in this collection cover a variety of Mainline Protestant communities, though there might be a plurality of Disciples sermons. In his introduction Phil recognizes the challenge of being drawn into crisis preaching, or perhaps better reactive preaching. His recommendation is to let resistance be part of the regular flow of preaching, preparing the people we serve to live faithfully and justly in our world. Part of that process is always keeping in mind our own social location. Like me Phil is a white cisgender male. That gives him and me certain privileges not afforded to all. Recognizing that is important if we're to be attentive to the realities of our day. So, what is resistance preaching? Phil offers three suggestions as to what it does. First, he writes, "it compares and contrasts the world as it is in comparison to how God wants it to be." Second, listners are invited "into another space and time, wherein the transforming realm of God is experienced and celebrated." Finally, "it equips listeners to do the truth." This occurs as people of faith respond to the "call of justice and love harbored in the name of God" (p. 5). Reading a book like this is both insightful and frustrating. It is insightful in that we get to consider what other colleagues have been sharing from their pulpits. It's frustrating in that we can't really get into the voice of the preacher. Sermons are oral events, even embodied events. Printed sermons can't catch the full embodiment of the sermon. I know this to be true of my own sermons, which I share on my blog to be read. They have a certain value, but they are missing something. That is true here. We miss the cadences and the tonality. We miss the sense of the room. Is the congregation embracing the word or resisting it? When it comes to preaching that is deemed prophetic, is the preacher speaking to the "choir" or to a community that remains uncertain, perhaps unconverted by the word the preacher believes to be important? Many of us preach to "purple congregations," that might be open to a prophetic word, but are leery about a steady diet, and are especially leery of what might be deemed political speech. I will confess that I have chosen to be more subtle in my political speech than some of the preachers included in this list. Others might feel freer to be more overt. Context may matter here. With these principles in mind, we encounter thirty sermons/preachers. Phil has tried to include contributions by women, men, transgender persons. It is ethnically diverse. Where there might be less diversity is in theology. Most would deem themselves on the liberal/progressive side of the scale. I know some of the preachers, but most are not known to me or are not well known to me. There are academics here and pastors. None are persons you would call famous. There is one famous name, but the Jesse Jackson in this collection is a Disciples pastor and community organizer, not the famous civil rights leader and former presidential candidate. I have been present for one of the sermons, that by my friend Jose Morales. This sermon was delivered at the Disciples General Assembly in July 2017. Thus, it is the one sermon in which I could experience fully, though it was shared in a convention hall and not a sanctuary. With a book like this all I can do as a reviewer is suggest that one pick it up and read. With thirty sermons, of varying length, one could use this as a month-long spiritual devotion, reading one sermon per day (that's not how I used it, but it is useful in that form). For preachers, one can get a sense of what resistance preaching might look like. As Snider notes, preaching isn't for the faint of heart in this age of Trump (or any age, really, but especially this age). The book is concluded with an afterword by another Disciples colleague, Richard Voelz, who is a homiletics professor at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, Virginia. Rich does a nice job summing up the collection and offering his own words of wisdom to preachers wanting to engage in resistance preaching. He adds five of his own principles to the three laid out by Phil in the introduction. First, it "requires an engaging, voiced vision of the kingdom of God." In other words, it needs to be rooted in the vision of Jesus and the song of Mary. Second, it "requires a community of support and a deep spiritual well." If we're going this route, we need to know we're not alone. Third, it "requires historical consciousness;" that is, recognizing this isn't the first time preachers have been asked to resist. Fourth, it "requires a revised sense of authority." Such preaching can't be done in an authoritarian manner. It has to be rooted in conversation with congregation. Finally, he suggests that such preaching "does not only say 'no,' but rather simultaneously says 'no' and 'yes.'" (p. 165-166). As we preach, we're not only against something, we are more importantly for something. Thus, the message of hope. There are angry words here, but also words of hope. This is true of preaching from the beginning -- just read the prophets of old. This is not a call to be curmudgeon, but to be a beacon of hope in a difficult age.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Erin *Help I’m Reading and I Can’t Get Up*

    Absolutely excellent collection. 5 stars.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kristi McClellan

    I bought this book at Evolving Faith in 2018 and read a sermon from it occasionally. It is a thought-provoking collection of sermons from a diverse group of preachers. Having the historical context of each sermon makes those words more meaningful. I have already referred back to this book and I will continue to, as I search for meaning and inspiration among our world’s events.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    Great sermons and good advice for preaching resistance.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Carol

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    Robert

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    Lianet Ramirez

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    Alexandria Steele

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    Tom

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    Alan Dicken

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    Merrie

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    Ryan Lindsey

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    Andy Springer

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    Deborah Arca

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    Michael Vollbrecht

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    Lacy

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    Laura

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    David Eiffert

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    Michelle Sharp

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    Ben

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    Holly Brown

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    Andrew

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    Kevin Maness

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    Nate Stueve

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    Kris Eggert

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    Leanne

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    Leigh Anne

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    Sara

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    Rachel Brand

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    Leigh

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    Chris Cash

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    Jennifer DiFrancesco

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    Kori

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    Julien

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    Cassandra Clyde

  37. 4 out of 5

    Kate

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