bishops and books

Well I suppose the title should have been archbishops and books, but that wouldnt have had the same ring to it, in fact it should have been archbishop (singular) and books, which is nowhere near as good. Ah well.

So anyway, the point of this post…

In the first place I’ve been able to narrow my focus down for the next book (if I’m fortunate enough to get offered another contract – which depends in no small part on the reception New Monasticism UK receives, gulp.) So anyway, I’ve had a bit of help from my good friend, now glorifying in the title of my agent, Ian Matthews, who has helped me spot the three basic ideas I had for books, from among the myriad of suggestions I’ve been mucking around with over the last few months.

And perhaps inevitably they all have a similar kind of feel, one which wont be altogether unfamiliar to those who assiduously read this blog, yeah, both of you.

One of the key factors is monasticism, I think there are lots of wonderful stories to be drawn out of the wealth of heritage found in the history of Christian monasticism and religious life, of all kinds, and from all eras.

And this is the clever bit, the segue where I am going to begin in the whole archbishop thing…

On Friday I was at an event, which is unusual for me, to do with Fresh Expressions – again, not exactly my normal/natural habitat. Its not that I dont have sympathy with the FE thing, nor that I dislike it or anything else, I’ve just never been part of it, nor seen myself as part of it.

But a key draw to go along to this event was not just to hear more about Fresh Expressions, but also to hear the Archbishop of Canterbury speak. While I couldn’t find it in myself to be an Anglican, disagreeing as I do with at least two of their 39 articles, I do have a huge amount of respect for Rowan Williams, who I consider to be a man way ahead of his time.

And at the event, Rowan Williams reccomended a book, which sounded interesting. He said it was ‘Following Francis’ by John Morgan Cron, a quick piece of googling showed that the book he no doubt meant was ‘Chasing Francis’ by Ian Morgan Cron, which shows that unlike the Pope, the word of the Arch Bish clearly isnt totally infallible 🙂

But the book does look interesting, it seems to follow the classic emerging church model, begun by brother MacLaren, of presenting discourse in the form of fiction. I like the look of it, and as and when I get it, and read it, I shall let you know.

In the meantime, I currently have two books to review – the meatiest is Christian Anarchism, by Alexandre Christoyannopoulos, which looks like a great read. I’ve also just received a copy of The Vertical Self, by Mark Sayers, which has currently disappeared under a pile of seed packets… but that’s another story.

Reviews to follow then…


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