[Serene Jones] Call It Grace [suisse Book] DOC – Kindle eBook, DOC or Book Download

REVIEW Call It Grace

In a world full of moral and spiritual challenges Rev Dr Serene Jones reveals a spiritual path open to all seekers who want real guidance through complicated issues that affect us allAs the president of the Union Theological Seminary Rev Dr Serene Jones is one of America's foremost theologians In this bracingly honest and practical book Rev Dr Jones takes us on an emotional and intellectual journey to bring spirituality back into our lives Reconnecting A few weeks ago I had never heard of Serene Jones or Union Theological Seminary I found out about both when Jones participated in a A with the New York Times In that piece she shared her doubts about the virgin birth and the resurrection among other things Her views weren t particularly shocking by themselves but I was fascinated because of Jones position as president of a theological seminary I was raised to believe that a Christian is someone who believes in the divinity of Jesus Christ Christian denominations exist for the sole purpose of clarifying communicating and protecting their clear ideas about the nature of God right So how can a person who scoffs at the traditional premise of the faith find her way into a career as a theologian and administrator at one of the country s oldest seminariesThis book answers that uestion in detail explaining Jones familial background and her spiritual journey And those parts of the book are extremely satisfying Jones carefully articulates her ideas and gives numerous examples of the theologians both famous and obscure that helped shape her outlook The structure of the book though feels a bit like a conversation with a stranger at a party or bar You start a casual conversation and soon you become keenly aware that this is a person of unusual depth You venture onto the topic of God and the next thing you know you ve talked all night They closed down the bar and then the coffee shop and now it s dawn and you re in someone s kitchen listening as the conversation turns down yet another new path What I mean is that it s not an especially coherent polished presentation of ideas or story Rather it s an interesting narrative that at times wanders or gets stuck a little too long on one topic Like that interesting stranger at the bar the author needs to be occasionally nudged back on track or to be led back to a particularly interesting point The best parts are when she connects the dots and clearly applies her theological outlook to the big conflicts in her life Like how she coped with her community s racist past or how her ideas of God s grace and forgiveness were undermined by the horror of the Oklahoma City bombing as well as the subseuent trial and execution of McVeighOther parts like when she muses about her grandfather and her mother or to a lesser her extent her sisters ex husband and daughter are somewhat jumbled and felt muddierThose muddy parts are where new details appear abruptly giving the conversation an ugly turn and completely changing the nature of the book When revelations about her mother are introduced late in the book for example it seems like the end of the memoir is an exercise in personal therapythe author working through her complex feelings rather than the objective theological treatise of earlier chaptersOverall it s a solid memoir that includes a lifetime of suggestions for further reading

REVIEW Ñ E-book, or Kindle E-pub Ó Serene Jones

Call It Grace

With our spirituality with a sense of the divine allows us all to live better together and answers many of the seemingly intractable problems we are facing todayDrawing from the work of Hegel Nietzsche and other great minds as well as from deeply moving and personal experiences Rev Dr Jones offers readers a rich guidebook for living a honest grace filled life In an era of increasing estrangement anxiety and gloom across the personal political and econom Serene Jones has written about the life of faith as a prominent theologian combining personal and family stories and experiences with the intellectual concepts of the great theological thinkers A beautiful exploration of how those of us who study Calvin Barth Kierdegaard Cone etc make sense of our lives and integrate the intellect with experience This book will be particularly good for those who don t understand theology not because it is an intro to theological thinking for it is not but becuase it describes how the theological imagination worksJones is a fellow Oklahoman so I was drawn to how central the Oklahoma experience is to her theological reflection I have been slowly working on a project for the last 13 years or so to develop a theology of plains first focused on Oklahoma but then expanded to include Nebraska when I moved in 2010 Her chapter on Prairie Theology was fun to readLarge parts of the book are memoiristic but they are not strictly memoir As someone who has published a memoir I felt there were places that her innovative genre allowed her to avoid some of the hard work of memoir One can t and shouldn t always move to lessons and morals from one s experience Also she was able to pick and choose from her experience in a way that papered over some probably because they didn t fit the genre she had created I also felt some experiences and relationships were insufficiently examined But many of these criticisms are somewhat nitpicky But I was bothered by two times when she got her facts wrong The first was when she described leaving her Tuesday morning class and then learning about the OKC bombing a key event in her narrative The bombing occurred on a Wednesday The second was the time of death for Timothy McVeigh She only got that one wrong by an hour But what puzzled me is that she didn t doublecheck her memory for these central stories Nor did any of her readers or editors correct her Nor did her editor look up all the look up able facts as my editor did StrangeWhile it suggest sloppy editing it also demonstrates the way trauma scrambles our brains

Serene Jones Ó 9 REVIEW

Ic landscape Call It Grace provides us with a vision of a system for how to live how to suffer cherish endure and thrive and with a way to approach and understand our divine natures impulses and possibilitiesWritten for everyone men and women left and right skeptic and believer people of all backgrounds and persuasions Call It Grace is a book for today's radical age of anxiety a book as serious and socially critical as it is helpful and broadly accessib The exploration of her Oklahoma and family roots and how those relate to her theological journey is very interesting Particularly timely is her discussion of her connections to the Oklahoma City Bombing on April 19 1995And I don t really want to be that kind of person but she says that the bombing happened the same day as her regular Tuesday lecture but April 19 1995 was a Wednesday I think the OKC Bombing has become linked in memory to 911 s Tuesday morning Small details like that just make my brain spin


10 thoughts on “Call It Grace

  1. says:

    A few weeks ago I had never heard of Serene Jones or Union Theological Seminary I found out about both when Jones participated in a A with the New York Times In that piece she shared her doubts about the virgin birth and the resurrection among other things Her views weren't particularly shocking by themselves but I was fascinated because of

  2. says:

    Not bad This coming from an atheist I have in common with SJ than I do some atheist friends She clearly has an op

  3. says:

    I couldn't put it down SJ is a gifted writer who made a theological memoir into a page turner As it happens I land in the same theological terrain as she and found a kindred spirit here

  4. says:

    The first thing that strikes you about Serene Jones graceful memoir is its bold and unflinching honesty She is President of the Union Theological Seminary and the daughter of a minister who has fought all his life for civil rights and the rights of all people but she lets us know early on that her grandfather—that wonderful father’s fath

  5. says:

    Serene Jones has written about the life of faith as a prominent theologian combining personal and family stories and experiences with the intellectual concepts of the great theological thinkers A beautiful exploration of how those of us who study Calvin Barth Kierdegaard Cone etc make sense of our lives and integrate the intellect with experience This book will be particularly good for those who don't understand theology not be

  6. says:

    Had high hopes for this bookAfter listening to a recent interview of Serene Jones on NPR I eagerly looked forward to reading Call It Grace The book is part memoir part reflection part theological essay I'm not certain it re

  7. says:

    This was an outstanding book– I'm glad I looked it up after listening to Serene Jones being interviewed by Krist

  8. says:

    I first found about this author through her remarkable book Trauma and Grace Theology in a Ruptured World so I knew I wanted to read this one as well Hard to imagine a memoir written by a theologian being a page turner but that is exactly what this was for me I loved this book and was deeply moved by her honest

  9. says:

    The exploration of her Oklahoma and family roots and how those relate to her theological journey is very interesting Particularly timely is her discussion of her connections to the Oklahoma City Bombing on April 19 1995And I don't really want to be that kind of person but she says that the bombing happened the same day as her regular Tuesday lecture but April 19 1995 was a Wednesday I think the OKC Bombing has become

  10. says:

    I heard Serene Jones the president of the Union Theological Seminary interviewed by Krista Tippet on the podcast O