The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Further reading

• Wendell Berry, Collected Poems: 1957-1982 (North Point Press, 1985; pages 151-152, available from www.amazon.com). The words "practice resurrection" conclude Berry's poem "Manifest: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front," a piece included in his 1973 collection The Country of Marriage. Berry is a farmer, poet, essayist and fiction writer who works with themes close to the heart of Christian discipleship.

• Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Discipleship: Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, Vol. 4 (Fortress Press, 2003). Bonhoeffer discusses practices that show us where the body of Christ is today: prayer, forgiveness, baptism, the Lord's Supper.

• Carl E. Braaten and Robert W. Jenson, eds., Marks of the Body of Christ (Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1999). Braaten and Jenson gather both Lutheran and non-Lutheran authors to address each of Martin Luther's "marks of the church."

• Mary E. Hinkle, Signs of Belonging: Luther's Marks of the Church and the Christian Life (Augsburg Fortress, 2004). Hinkle lays out Martin Luther's "marks of the church," identifying key Bible passages for consideration and questions for discussion.

• Martin Luther, "On the Councils and the Church," Martin Luther's Basic Theological Writings (Timothy F. Lull, ed.; Fortress Press, 1989; pages 539-575) and Luther's Works: Vol. 41 (Fortress Press, 1966; pages 3-178). Here Luther identifies the "marks of the church" as practices of the Christian people: the preaching and hearing of the word, baptizing, sharing the Lord's Supper, forgiving, praying, praising, teaching our children, calling out leaders and following in the way of the cross.

• Ronald Rolheiser, The Holy Longing: The Search for a Christian Spirituality (Doubleday, 1999, available from www.amazon.com). In a book full of fresh insights, Rolheiser critically examines the hunger for spirituality in a culture that wants to be "spiritual, but not religious." The heart of Christian spirituality is the incarnation of God in Christ, and Rolheiser highlights key 'spiritualities' within Christianity. His notion of "letting your loss bless you" comes from a spirituality of the Paschal Mystery. It is a sturdy guide to the liturgical season of Pentecost.

• Miroslav Volf, Exclusion & Embrace: A Theological Exploration of Identity, Otherness and Reconciliation (Abingdon Press, 1996). Volf presents embrace as the Christian response to the problem of exclusion. He outlines the personal and political dimensions of forgiveness and reconciliation.


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