Would you like to be a fly on the wall while two intellectual and spiritual heavyweights have a free ranging discourse on issues from preaching, pacifism, and politics, as well as Shakespeare, poetry, and writing? Well, you have that chance with a new book, “In Conversation: Rowan Williams and Greg Garrett” (Church Publishing Incorporated, May 17, 2019, Trade Paper $14.95, 128 pages, ISBN: 987-1-6405-129-6).
How is God speaking in our lives today? How do Christians discern what they’re being called to do? How do literature and culture intersect with the Scriptures and our tradition? And what might the work of the artist teach us about both spiritual practice and the vocational tasks of preaching and teaching?
In this new volume of the “In Conversation series,” Williams and Garrett talk about friendship, the Church, the gift of great novels, the relationship between faith and politics, and the necessity of sacred community, modeling for us in the process both the vanishing art of conversation and an active engagement with faith, culture, and real life.
In Conversation spans seven conversations that touch upon dozens of topics, including:
• Political tribalism and the need to listen and discuss, not accuse and fight
• The power of Shakespeare, poetry, novels, and writing
• Literature as theology and theological writing
• Theology and pop culture
• The needs and offerings of the Church today
• The practice of prayer and preaching
“If you’re interested in the Church, you have the chance to listen in as a past Archbishop of Canterbury and an enthusiastic convert to the Episcopal Church talk about what the Church is called to be doing and how it can make a difference in the life of the world,” says Garrett in the foreword. “If you’re a writer, teacher, preacher, or avid reader, you get to hear two writers and teachers talking about form and practice, discussing works that have shaped their own lives and work, and noting some of the connections between the writing practice of a poet, fiction writer, or public theologian and the weekly work of a preacher.”
Williams and Garrett share an interest in things of faith, the written word (especially plays, poetry, and fiction), and a good conversation. In this volume, the next in the In Conversation series, they take on all three, especially through the lens of listening.