February 2003
 

CONTENTS

February 2003

Partners in power
The Assistant Editor

Bishop Vincent Malone

Vincent Malone is the Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Liverpool and Episcopal Liaison Officer of the National Board of Catholic Women. Here he outlines the process of dialogue which has been undertaken with the NBCW and suggests ways in which women can serve officially in the Church. He endorses the invitation to women made by the bishops of England and Wales: ‘You must not be excluded from the process of pastoral planning and decision-making.’

Women and the call to power
Clare Watkins

Clare Watkins is Vice Principal of the Margaret Beaufort Institute of Theology, in Cambridge. Here she reflects on how her teaching, study and prayer there enriched her own pastoral and theological experience, and suggests a renewal of understanding of power in and for the Church’s mission. Power may simply be a ‘desire to make a difference . . . to change things’, which, she suggests, ‘is part of the general call to be loving, self-transcending human beings’.

Rethinking power
Anna Rowlands

Anna Rowlands lives in North Wales with her husband, who is an Anglican priest, and their young son. She has experience in lay chaplaincy in special needs and mainstream education and is currently doing a PhD in theology at the University of Manchester. Here she reflects on the position of the powerless as being less on the margins of the Christian Church as constituting its Broken Middle.

The mystery of the lay vocation
Christine Fletcher

The crime novelist Dorothy L. Sayers, has much to say to us about the meaning of the lay Christian’s vocation being realised through secular work. That writer’s theology of work is the subject of doctoral studies being undertaken through the Cambridge Theological Federation by Christine Fletcher, an American living in England. Here she shows how Sayers’ vision of the secular worker as ‘artist’ can liberate and empower men and women today.

Women religious and governance
Gemma Simmonds

Gemma Simmonds is a member of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary and frequent contributor to Priests & People’s Postscript. Here she gives an account of the contribution of women religious to the Church in the past and, rather less visibly, today. That contribution has not always been appreciated by those in authority and ‘Nothing makes bolder and more brave reading than the life of many of the women founders of religious congregations’.

Preaching and teaching the Word
Geoffrey Turner

Geoffrey Turner teaches New Testament at Trinity and All Saints College in the University of Leeds, where he is also Head of Theology. Here he offers some reflections on the lectionary readings for March which include those for the beginning of Lent.

Pastoralia - Helping the mentally troubled
Anne Roberts

How do people cope with mental health problems? Religious and spiritual beliefs are important to many of those stressed, mentally and emotionally, as the recent ‘Somerset Spirituality Project’ has found. Anne Roberts has been working with the Mental Health Foundation’s ‘Strategies for Living’ Programme, of which the Somerset project was one initiative, and suggests some of the ways in which church workers can provide the necessary support.


Books

   REVIEWED BY BERNARD ROBINSON
The Face of Old Testament Studies: a survey of contemporary approaches
edited by D.W. Baker and B.T. Arnold
Apollos, £27.99
Tablet Bookshop Price: £ Tel: 01420 592 974


   REVIEWED BY BERNARD ROBINSON
Text in Context: essays by members of the Society for Old Testament Study
ed. by A.H.D. Mayes
Oxford University Press, £65
Tablet Bookshop Price: £ Tel: 01420 592 974


   REVIEWED BY BERNARD ROBINSON
Ichabod Toward Home: the journey of God’s glory
Walter Brueggemann
Eerdmans, £10.99
Tablet Bookshop Price: £ Tel: 01420 592 974


   REVIEWED BY BERNARD ROBINSON
Character and Ideology in the Book of Esther. Second Edition with Postscript
Michael V. Fox
Eerdmans, £18.99
Tablet Bookshop Price: £ Tel: 01420 592 974


   REVIEWED BY BERNARD ROBINSON
Song of Songs (NICOT)
by Tremper Longman III
Eerdmans, £24.99
Tablet Bookshop Price: £ Tel: 01420 592 974


   REVIEWED BY BERNARD ROBINSON
The Psalms in Daily Life
John Rogerson
SPCK, £8.99
Tablet Bookshop Price: £ Tel: 01420 592 974