Living Gently in a Violent World: The Prophetic Witness of Weakness

Overview

How are Christians to live in a violent and wounded world? Rather than contending for privilege by wielding power and authority, we can witness prophetically from a position of weakness. The church has much to learn from an often overlooked community--those with disabilities.

In this fascinating book, theologian Stanley Hauerwas collaborates with Jean Vanier, founder of the worldwide L'Arche communities. For many years, Hauerwas has reflected on the lives of people with ...

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Overview

How are Christians to live in a violent and wounded world? Rather than contending for privilege by wielding power and authority, we can witness prophetically from a position of weakness. The church has much to learn from an often overlooked community--those with disabilities.

In this fascinating book, theologian Stanley Hauerwas collaborates with Jean Vanier, founder of the worldwide L'Arche communities. For many years, Hauerwas has reflected on the lives of people with disability, the political significance of community, and how the experience of disability addresses the weaknesses and failures of liberal society. And L'Arche provides a unique model of inclusive community that is underpinned by a deep spirituality and theology. Together, Vanier and Hauerwas carefully explore the contours of a countercultural community that embodies a different way of being and witnesses to a new order--one marked by radical forms of gentleness, peacemaking and faithfulness.

The authors' explorations shed light on what it means to be human and how we are to live. The robust voice of Hauerwas and the gentle words of Vanier offer a synergy of ideas that, if listened to carefully, will lead the church to a fresh practicing of peace, love and friendship.

This invigorating conversation is for everyday Christians who desire to live faithfully in a world that is violent and broken.

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Editorial Reviews

Amos Yong
"Church takes time, patience, gentleness, vulnerability, friendship, hospitality, mutuality and peaceableness. In other words, church takes practice--this is the prophetic witness of the L'Arche communities not to the world, but to the church! And this prophetic witness is carried in this book by the gentle voice of Jean Vanier, the polemical one of Stanley Hauerwas, and the wise introduction and conclusion from John Swinton. Here is the prophetic edge that is even at the vanguard of the emerging church!"
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780830834525
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press
  • Publication date: 9/30/2008
  • Series: Resources for Reconciliation
  • Pages: 117
  • Sales rank: 577,555
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Stanley Hauerwas (Ph.D., Yale University) is Gilbert T. Rowe Professor of Theological Ethics at Duke Divinity School, Duke University. He was named "America's best theologian" by Time in 2001 and has written consistently about the theological significance of disability. One of the most widely read theologians of the late twentieth century, his books include Resident Aliens, Wilderness Wanderings, A Community of Character, A Peaceable Kingdom, Sanctify Them in the Truth, With the Grain of the Universe and A Better Hope.

Jean Vanier (Ph.D., L'Institut Catholique de Paris) is the founder of L'Arche, an international network of communities where people with and without learning disabilities experience life together as fellow human beings who share a mutuality of care and need. Today over 130 L'Arche communities exist in 34 countries on 6 continents. Jean's books include Community and Growth, Becoming Human, From Brokenness to Community and Befriending the Stranger.

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Table of Contents

Series Preface by Series Editors Emmanuel Katongole and Chris Rice
Introduction: Living Gently in a Violent World
By John Swinton
1. The Fragility of L'Arche and the Friendship of God
By Jean Vanier
2. Finding God in Strange Places: Why L'Arche Needs the Church
By Stanley Hauerwas
3. The Vision of Jesus: Living Peaceably in a Wounded World
By Jean Vanier
4. The Politics of Gentleness
By Stanley Hauerwas
Conclusion: L'Arche as a Peace Movement
By John Swinton
Notes
About the Authors
About the Duke Divinity School Center for Reconciliation
About Resources for Reconciliation
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