Seven Days to Freedom

Seven Days to Freedom

Author John Dudley Davies
Publisher DLT £14.99
Format pbk
ISBN 9780232534856

Rarely is a book of a spiritual nature funny. This one made me laugh out loud in several places. For example, after quoting from material produced at the Walsingham Shrine which makes the point that all things are connected ‘even pilgrimage’, the author goes on to say that also connected are ‘scampi, aunts, trigonometry, eisteddfodau, Wing Commanders, urine, scalpels, semiquavers, USBs, magpies etc.’ That gives a flavour of the witty writing. Essentially, this is a series of sermons using the biblical creation stories, with a strong emphasis on the seventh day as a climax that brings all things together. This skilfully thought-provoking work relates the biblical text to present-day issues: coronavirus, the attempts by migrants to cross from Calais to Britain, and Archbishop Welby’s promotion of credit unions, amongst other issues. I cannot help feeling that this might make the book become dated rather quickly, because such questions will not necessarily assume great historical importance viewed retrospectively. Perhaps that does not matter to an author who is aged nearly 94. In the here and now, I loved this book.

Reviewed by ALAN WAKELY

Sermons; Creation

 

Love The World

Love The World

Author David Adam​
Publisher SPCK  £7.99
Format pbk
ISBN 9780281077762​

This is not a lengthy book, but it covers an immense amount of ground, from the beginning of our universe to the present day. The great mystery of creation is common to both science and religion but what is attractive in this book is that it uses straightforward language to point to the ways in which the one can learn from the other. It is packed with stimulating thoughts and information. ​ There are six main sections which deal with the Beginning, the Atmosphere, Water, Earth, Humankind and a Conclusion. Within each is a number of short commentaries, a poem, a personal exercise of a mental or physical nature, and a prayer. ​ However, in spite of the wonders of scientific discovery, the activities of humankind, if continued, could result in the demise of all living things. It is only by love of our world and love of each other which can save the human race from extinction. ​ This book should have great appeal for readers, clergy and everyone.

PAUL BREGAZZI​ ​

Creation, Ecology

 

Stewards of God’s Delight

Stewards of God’s Delight

Author Mark Clavier
Publisher Cascade Books £12.00
Format pbk
9781498225434

I had some real difficulties with this book because although there were excellent analogies of the spiritual life and our relationship with God, it always came back to a very fundamental view of Eden and our downfall affecting the whole planet. We live in a volatile world with moving tectonic plates resulting in disasters which cannot solely be linked to our distancing from God. Likewise our knowledge that some carnivore dinosaurs walked this planet before us does not easily fit with a harmonious creation until we came along. No explanation or alternative view was offered. As one who loves the natural world I could empathise with the author’s delight in the beauty of creation but it did leave unanswered questions. Based on talks given to ordinands, the author’s bias is to those primarily in a priestly role, so although it might provide useful study group material it has limited appeal for Readers.

ROSEMARY BALL

Creation