New and Noteworthy

Race Matters

True to Our Native Land, edited by Brian Blount, describes itself as the first African-American commentary on the New Testament. This rich resource includes commentaries on each of the books by scholars Allen Dwight Callahan, Cain Hope Felder, Mitzi Smith, among others. The first part of the book also provides essays on broader topics such as slavery in the early church, and African-American art and biblical interpretation. Several pages of full-color art round out an impressive book. Fortress Press

No Room?

Posada, written and directed by Mark McGregor, S.J., uses the Christmas story of Joseph and Mary's search for shelter (posada, in Spanish) to illustrate the problems unaccompanied immigrant children face in the U.S. The hour-long film focuses on Johny, Wilber, and Densi, three boys whose journeys wind from Central America through the Mexican desert, Los Angeles streets, and juvenile detention centers. Loyola Productions

Breaking Bread

Of Widows and Meals: Communal Meals in the Book of Acts, by Reta Halteman Finger, is a fascinating look at the table fellowship and communal sharing of the early church. She examines the social and economic world of Acts, the symbolic role of food, and the roles women—particularly widows—played in communal meals. Hers is an important reminder that as Jesus shared his meals, and his life, with others, so should we. Eerdmans

Quiet Awe

"The sacraments will lift us," sings Karen Peris in "Song for Tom," one of the 11 tracks on We Walked in Song, the latest from The Innocence Mission. It's a line that captures the overall effort by Peris and husband Don—subtle, intimate, a touch melancholy, but not sad. The sacraments in this case are the kindness of strangers, birthdays, and "undeserved sweetness and light." Badman Recording

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