"When it comes to discerning what to read, watch or listen to in the precious time we have, it is always helpful to have the suggestions of people who read and experience new information as part of their living. Some of our faculty share here monthly the books they are reading, as well as the electronic media they are listening to or viewing.?? Most of us have a stack of books at our bedside, while some of us have stacks near our reading chair, our cocktail table and any other horizontal surface capable of supporting weight. Most of us also have long lists of films we want to see or music groups we hope to experience.? When it is possible, some of the faculty will give you a few words of evaluation of what is occupying their leisure time.
In a world with too many options for reading and watching, we hope faculty suggestions will help you in your discernment process about what to read on your journey." ?
~ Dean Mark S. Markuly, PhD?
Currently reading: How Will You Measure Your Life? by Harvard Business School's professor Clayton Christensen, James Allworth, & Karen Dillon... & The Soul Tells a Story: Engaging Creativity with Spirituality in the Writing Life, by Vinita Hampton Wright
What I'm reading these days: Helpmates, Harlots, and Heroes by Alice Ogden Bellis and Reading the Gospels Wisely by Jonathan T. Pennington
"The Memory of Old Jack" by Wendall Berry - a reflection here below by Dr. Cunningham:
"Every now and then someone comes along who is a reliable scout.? Someone--who has been there and back.? Someone--who emulates and radiates the best of the best. Such is the case with author and storyteller Wendell Berry.? My senses came alive as I entered into Jack?s world, his green pastures, still waters and shadows of death. The Memory of Old Jack is a MUST read for leaders, writers, preachers, and storytellers.
Jack, developed a strong work ethic in old Kentucky from the time he was a young boy born during the reign and ruin of the Civil War in the 1860?s. Jack Beechum grew up in the small town of Port William in a family that was devastated by the War.? The family never recovered from the death of his two older brothers.? Father lost his sense of purpose and mother was overcome by grief. ?
Jack?s older sister became a surrogate mother and a brother-in-law who became the substitute father.? The Memory of Old Jack invites the reader to touch the earth, engage values, and discover truth in personal relationships.? Desiring intimacy and companionship Jack courts the beautiful Ruth.? Ruth wants to redesign Jack to be upright, God-fearing and ambitious.? Love, heartbreak, inequity, values, guilt, pride, purpose and joy are discovered in the land and the people.? Leaving the land as an old man, he plumbs the depth of life, land and legacy.
Anyone who is a public speaker or preacher will discover descriptive language that dances truth into form.? The expressive detail imbedded in Wendell Berry?s word pictures reveal usable secrets to telling stories, developing narratives, and handling things spiritual.? Jack?s character was so exquisitely developed to the point that, as I returned the book to the shelf, I had the distinct feeling that I had known him all of his life. ?
Wendell Berry paints a narrative using the entire palette."