The Common Good
April 2009

New and Noteworthy

by Molly Marsh | April 2009

God Drops and Loses Things, by Kilian McDonnell; 15 Days of Prayer, series from New Press; Servant or Sucker, by Beth Templeton; and CompassionArt: Creating Freedom from Poverty, by Martin ...

God Drops Things
Benedictine monk Kilian McDonnell’s third book of poems, God Drops and Loses Things, reverberates with the same wry, awkward, accessible humanness of his first two collections, Swift, Lord, You Are Not and Yahweh’s Other Shoe. McDonnell “contends with God” in every line—“Am I/ to imitate the God who killed/ all the firstborn in Egypt.” This is religious poetry in its highest form. Liturgical Press

Spiritual Companionship
In our journeys of faith, it’s difficult—and often unwise—to travel alone. The 15 Days of Prayer series offers a number of possible guides—Catherine of Siena, Saint Benedict, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer, to name a few. Each book in the series focuses on and includes a brief biography of one figure; readers then move through 15 days of meditations and meaty reflection questions. New City Press

What Would Jesus Do?
What do you do when a stranger asks you for a handout? Is giving money the best idea? Servant or Sucker: Wise and Compassionate Ways to Help the Poor, a five-session DVD-based study, looks at several ways to answer that question. The series is hosted by Presbyterian minister Beth Templeton, and includes interviews with homeless folks and churchgoers, basic information about poverty, and steps viewers can take to educate themselves about the resources in their communities. www.umcom.org

Music and Justice
Martin Smith, lead singer for the band Delirious?, couldn’t reconcile staying in five-star hotels when people live in slums. So he decided to take action in the arena he knows something about: music. CompassionArt: Creating Free­dom from Poverty is a 14-track CD with songs from 12 songwriters, including Michael W. Smith and Steven Curtis Chapman. A companion book, The Art of Compassion, contains reflections from the musicians about their experience working on the project. All proceeds support charitable projects.

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