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The Heartbeat of God

Finding the Sacred in the Middle of Everything

Katharine Jefferts Schori
Foreword by Joan Chittister, OSB

6 x 9, 240 pp, Hardcover

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Insights from a pioneering leader in world religion, on the intersections of the sacred and the secular.

“As Christians—indeed as people of faith of any tradition—we are called to tend to the needs of the least among us. Our response to them must be the response of faith. God gives us a new heart to do this work, and every time we gather to do it, God offers a pacemaker jolt to tweak our heart’s rhythm. The challenge is this: will our hearts respond with a strengthened beat, in tune with God’s own heartbeat, sending more life out into the world?”

—from the Introduction

Explore our connections—as human beings with each other, as one nation with all other nations, as the human species with the whole of our environment—through the lens of faith. Katharine Jefferts Schori, presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church, examines these connections as she looks at the intersections of faith with the major issues of our day:

  • How does faith speak to poverty, climate change, the economy, health care, and what is the faith response?
  • How can believers from many faith traditions find common ground while honoring the Divine, serving one another and creating deeper community?
  • How do we best use the resources of faith to connect us to the hearts of our
    neighbors and to the heart of God?

“Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, with her elegant, light touch, shows how an authentic Christianity demands a concern for, and an involvement with, thoroughly mundane issues such as ending poverty and hunger, providing health care, and dealing with climate change, gender equality and crime. In her version of reality, everything is sacred except sin.”

The Rt. Rev. Desmond Tutu

“ď[Jefferts Schori] doesn’t just point out the problems plaguing the world ... she also provides guidance and asks questions that make readers examine their hearts.... Germane to people of all faiths.... Encourages us that together we can overcome adversity.”

“By meditations on scripture and personal anecdotes, Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori calls the Church to love our neighbor as ourselves and gives examples of how to do so.”

John C. Danforth, Episcopal priest; former US senator from Missouri; special envoy for peace in Sudan; US ambassador to the United Nations

“A down to earth, heartfelt exposition of biblical truth for everyday life—from a remarkable, barrier-breaking woman.”

Rev. Dr. Joan Brown Campbell, author, Living into Hope: A Call to Spiritual Action for Such a Time as This

“Timely ... peppered with wisdom and perspective born of reflective and courageous living.... Adeptly weaves together Scripture, personal experience, insights from current events and wisdom from others.... Nothing short of prophetic.”

Christian Feminism Today

“With a sense of proportion informed by hope ...  gives us a great gift: the sound of a voice of calm in the midst of seemingly perpetual storm.”

Jon Meacham, author, American Gospel; winner of the Pulitzer Prize

“Uses a sensitive spiritual stethoscope to detect the ‘heartbeat of God’ among people crying out for justice…. A wonderful invitation to join Bishop Katharine in a powerful and prayerful twenty-first-century reflection.”

Maureen Fiedler, host of Interfaith Voices (a public radio show); editor, Breaking Through the Stained Glass Ceiling: Women Religious Leaders in Their Own Words

“Relevant, practical, and actionable ... well suited for personal study.... An incredibly rich resource.... Has the power to change the way you live by resetting your spiritual cardiac rhythm to that of Godís own heart.”

“Bishop Jefferts Schori wrestles—sincerely and fearlessly—with the call of the gospel and with every kind of impediment we have to a vibrant response to that call. Her exploration of the core teachings of Christian texts will challenge and illuminate people far beyond the Episcopal world.”           

Andrea Cohen-Kiener, author, Claiming Earth as Common Ground: The Ecological Crisis through the Lens of Faith

“Maintains that Christians are challenged to help bring about the commonweal of God.”

Spirituality & Practice

Katharine Jefferts Schori is the presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church. Prior to her ordination to the priesthood in 1994, she was a visiting assistant professor in Oregon State University’s Department of Religious Studies, a visiting scientist at Oregon State’s College of Oceanography, and an oceanographer with the National Marine Fisheries Service in Seattle. She became the Anglican Communion’s first female primate in 2006. She is the author of Gathering at God’s Table: The Meaning of Mission in the Feast of Faith; A Wing and a Prayer: A Message of Faith and Hope and The Gospel in the Global Village: Seeking God’s Dream of Shalom.

Joan Chittister, OSB, is an international lecturer and award-winning author of more than thirty-five books, including The Gift of Years: Growing Older Gracefully. She is founder and executive director of Benetvision, a resource and research center for contemporary spirituality located in Erie, Pennsylvania. She serves as co-chair of the Global Peace Initiative of Women and the Network of Spiritual Progressives.

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