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Diversity Discussions Book of the Month

Welcome! Join us every month as we read books presenting a variety of perspectives on diversity and inclusion. We encourage people to engage the following resources from an evangelical perspective, as summarized in our Christ-Centered Diversity Commitment.

 

December Book of the Month

 

cropThe Deeply Formed Life: Five Transformative Values to Root Us in the Way of Jesus

by Pastor Rich Villodas

Pastor Rich Villodas, debuts with an engaging exploration of how to form a deeper union with Christ. Explaining how Christians are constantly at risk of being made shallow by their material desires due to “the value system of a world that determines worth based on accomplishments, possessions, efficiency, intellectual acumen, and gifts,” Villodas recommends a deeply rooted life “marked by new rhythms, contemplative presence, and interior awareness, which results in lives that work for reconciliation, justice, and peace while seeing the sacredness of all life.”

The five values Villodas focuses on—unplugging from hectic life, achieving emotional health, integrating sexuality and spirituality, pursuing racial justice, and spreading the gospel—are explored through prayer suggestions and examples from scripture of the “deeply formed practices of contemplative rhythms” in the lives of Moses, John the Baptist, and Jesus. These concepts become most tangible in Villodas’s detailing of discussions he’s had with congregants about racial injustice and racial disparities, and the seven “habits” for change he learned as a result—remembering history, listening with concentration, lamenting, praying for reconciliation, practicing racial self-examination, renouncing whiteness, and repenting. Christians looking to bring more intention and emotion into their religious life will love this. 


Previous Books of the Month

2022

November Book of the Month

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Notable Native People: 50 Indigenous Leaders, Dreamers, and Changemakers from Past and Present

by Dr. Adrienne Keene

Celebrate the lives, stories, and contributions of Indigenous artists, activists, scientists, athletes, and other changemakers in this beautifully illustrated collection. From luminaries of the past, like nineteenth-century sculptor Edmonia Lewis—the first Black and Native American female artist to achieve international fame—to contemporary figures like linguist Jessie Little Doe Baird, who revived the Wampanoag language, Notable Native People highlights the vital impact Indigenous dreamers and leaders have made on the world.

This powerful and informative collection also offers accessible primers on important Indigenous issues, from the legacy of colonialism and cultural appropriation to food sovereignty, land and water rights, and more. An indispensable read for people of all backgrounds seeking to learn about Native American heritage, histories, and cultures, Notable Native People will educate and inspire readers of all ages.

October Book of the Month

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Little Manila Is in the Heart: The Making of the Filipina/o American Community in Stockton, California

by Dr. Dawn Bohulano Mabalon

In the early twentieth century—not long after 1898, when the United States claimed the Philippines as an American colony—Filipinas/os became a vital part of the agricultural economy of California's fertile San Joaquin Delta. In downtown Stockton, they created Little Manila, a vibrant community of hotels, pool halls, dance halls, restaurants, grocery stores, churches, union halls, and barbershops. Little Manila was home to the largest community of Filipinas/os outside of the Philippines until the neighborhood was decimated by urban redevelopment in the 1960s.

Narrating a history spanning much of the twentieth century, Dawn Bohulano Mabalon traces the growth of Stockton's Filipina/o American community, the birth and eventual destruction of Little Manila, and recent efforts to remember and preserve it. Mabalon draws on oral histories, newspapers, photographs, personal archives, and her own family's history in Stockton. She reveals how Filipina/o immigrants created a community and ethnic culture shaped by their identities as colonial subjects of the United States, their racialization in Stockton as brown people, and their collective experiences in the fields and in the Little Manila neighborhood. In the process, Mabalon places Filipinas/os at the center of the development of California agriculture and the urban West.

September Book of the Month

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Brown Church: Five Centuries of Latina/o Social Justice, Theology, and Identity

by Rev. Dr. Robert Chao Romero

For five hundred years, Latina/o culture and identity have been shaped by their challenges to the religious, socio-economic, and political status quo, whether in opposition to Spanish colonialism, Latin American dictatorships, US imperialism in Central America, the oppression of farmworkers, or the current exploitation of undocumented immigrants. Christianity has played a significant role in that movement at every stage.

Robert Chao Romero, the son of a Mexican father and a Chinese immigrant mother, explores the history and theology of what he terms the "Brown Church." Romero considers how this movement has responded to these and other injustices throughout its history by appealing to the belief that God's vision for redemption includes not only heavenly promises but also the transformation of every aspect of our lives and the world. Walking through this history of activism and faith, readers will discover that Latina/o Christians have a heart after God's own.

August Book of the Month

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Selected Poems

by Ms. Gwendolyn Brooks

Selected Poems is the classic volume by the distinguished and celebrated poet Gwendolyn Brooks, winner of the 1950 Pulitzer Prize, and recipient of the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. This compelling collection showcases Brooks's technical mastery, her warm humanity, and her compassionate and illuminating response to a complex world. This edition also includes a special PS section with insights, interviews, and more—including a short piece by Nikki Giovanni entitled "Remembering Gwen."

By 1963 the civil rights movement was in full swing across the United States, and more and more African American writers were increasingly outspoken in attacking American racism and insisting on full political, economic, and social equality for all. In that memorable year of the March on Washington, Harper & Row released Brooks’s Selected Poems, which incorporated poems from her first three collections, as well as a selection of new poems.

This edition of Selected Poems includes A Street in Bronzeville, Brooks's first published volume of poetry for which she became nationally known and which led to successive Guggenheim fellowships; Annie Allen, published one year before she became the first African American author to win the Pulitzer Prize in any category; and The Bean Eaters, her fifth publication which expanded her focus from studies of the lives of mainly poor urban black Americans to the heroism of early civil rights workers and events of particular outrage—including the 1955 Emmett Till lynching and the 1957 school desegregation crisis in Little Rock, Arkansas.

July Book of the Month

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The Next Worship: Glorifying God in a Diverse World

by Pastor Sandra Maria Van Opstal

We live in a time of unprecedented intercultural exchange, where our communities welcome people from around the world. Music and media from every culture are easily accessible, and our worship is infused with a rich variety of musical and liturgical influences. But leading worship in multicultural contexts can be a cross-cultural experience for everybody. How do we help our congregations navigate the journey?

Innovative worship leader Sandra Maria Van Opstal is known for crafting worship that embodies the global, multiethnic body of Christ. Likening diverse worship to a sumptuous banquet, she shows how worship leaders can set the table and welcome worshipers from every tribe and tongue. Van Opstal provides biblical foundations for multiethnic worship, with practical tools and resources for planning services that reflect God's invitation for all peoples to praise him.

When multiethnic worship is done well, the church models reconciliation and prophetic justice, heralding God's good news for the world. Enter into the praise of our king, and let the nations rejoice!

June Book of the Month

America Is in the Heart

by Mr. Carlos Bulosan

For far too long, public education had been under the shadow of terms such as failing schools, achievement gaps, and poor classroom management. While many publications have outlined these issues, the goal of this book is not to resonate with despair but to illuminate our hopes and dreams for public education. For the authors of this book, having the audacity to hope for better public education means trusting teachers and children to engage in intellectual endeavors that advocate for the development of the whole person and active participation in a democratic community. This book will be a great resource for pre-service and in-service teachers, professors, administrators, and policy-makers in exploring a new pathway for educational reform.

May Book of the Month

A Many-Colored Kingdom: Multicultural Dynamics for Spiritual Formation crop

by Dr. Elizabeth Conde-FrazierDr. S. Steve Kang, and  Dr. Gary A. Parrett

For far too long, public education had been under the shadow of terms such as failing schools, achievement gaps, and poor classroom management. While many publications have outlined these issues, the goal of this book is not to resonate with despair but to illuminate our hopes and dreams for public education. For the authors of this book, having the audacity to hope for better public education means trusting teachers and children to engage in intellectual endeavors that advocate for the development of the whole person and active participation in a democratic community. This book will be a great resource for pre-service and in-service teachers, professors, administrators, and policy-makers in exploring a new pathway for educational reform.

April Book of the Month

The Hope for Audacity: Recapturing Optimism and Civility in Education (Critical Education and Ethics)crop

by Dr. Il-Hee Kim, Dr. Terri Jo Swim, and Dr. Keith Howard

For far too long, public education had been under the shadow of terms such as failing schools, achievement gaps, and poor classroom management. While many publications have outlined these issues, the goal of this book is not to resonate with despair but to illuminate our hopes and dreams for public education. For the authors of this book, having the audacity to hope for better public education means trusting teachers and children to engage in intellectual endeavors that advocate for the development of the whole person and active participation in a democratic community. This book will be a great resource for pre-service and in-service teachers, professors, administrators, and policy-makers in exploring a new pathway for educational reform.

March Book of the Month

Women Crossing Borders: Reflections on Cross-cultural Ministrycrop

by Dr. Cheri Pierson

The women featured in this book discuss their love for God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit (The Holy Trinity) and why they became missionaries. They also speak briefly of their goals, successes, and failures or rather what they consider their outcomes as failures, such as when a person they had hoped would but didn't convert to Christianity.

February Book of the Month

cropJust as I Am: A Memoir

by Ms. Cicely Tyson

“Just as I Am is my truth. It is me, plain and unvarnished, with the glitter and garland set aside. In these pages, I am indeed Cicely, the actress who has been blessed to grace the stage and screen for six decades. Yet I am also the church girl who once rarely spoke a word. I am the teenager who sought solace in the verses of the old hymn for which this book is named. I am a daughter and a mother, a sister and a friend. I am an observer of human nature and the dreamer of audacious dreams. I am a woman who has hurt as immeasurably as I have loved, a child of God divinely guided by his hand. And here in my ninth decade, I am a woman who, at long last, has something meaningful to say.” –Cicely Tyson

January Book of the Month

cropIn a Single Garment of Destiny": A Global Vision of Justice 

by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Too many people continue to think of Dr. King only as “a southern civil rights leader” or “an American Gandhi,” thus ignoring his impact on poor and oppressed people around the world. “In a Single Garment of Destiny“ is the first book to treat King’s positions on global liberation struggles through the prism of his own words and activities. 

From the pages of this extraordinary collection, King emerges not only as an advocate for global human rights but also as a towering figure who collaborated with Eleanor Roosevelt, Albert J. Luthuli, Thich Nhat Hanh, and other national and international figures in addressing a multitude of issues we still struggle with today-from racism, poverty, and war to religious bigotry and intolerance. Introduced and edited by distinguished King scholar Lewis Baldwin, this volume breaks new ground in our understanding of King. 


2021

December Book of the Month

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How to Fight Racism: Courageous Christianity and the Journey Toward Racial Justice

by Dr. Jemar Tisby

How do we effectively confront racial injustice? We need to move beyond talking about racism and start equipping ourselves to fight against it.

In this follow-up to the New York Times Bestseller the Color of Compromise, Jemar Tisby offers an array of actionable items to confront racism. How to Fight Racism introduces a simple framework—the A.R.C. Of Racial Justice—that teaches readers to consistently interrogate their own actions and maintain a consistent posture of anti-racist behavior.

The A.R.C. Of Racial Justice is a clear model for how to think about race in productive ways:

  • Awareness: educate yourself by studying history, exploring your personal narrative, and grasping what God says about the dignity of the human person.
  • Relationships: understand the spiritual dimension of race relations and how authentic connections make reconciliation real and motivate you to act.
  • Commitment: consistently fight systemic racism and work for racial justice by orienting your life to it.
    Tisby offers practical tools for following this model and suggests that by applying these principles, we can help dismantle a social hierarchy long stratified by skin color. He encourages rejection passivity and active participation in the struggle for human dignity. There is hope for transforming our nation and the world, and you can be part of the solution.

November Book of the Month

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The Everlasting People: G. K. Chesterton and the First Nations

by Dr. Matthew J. Milliner, Contributions by CAPT. David Iglesias, Dr. David Hooker, and Rev. Dr. Amy Peeler

What does the cross of Christ have to do with the thunderbird? How might the life and work of Christian writer G. K. Chesterton shed light on our understanding of North American Indigenous art and history? This unexpected connection forms the basis of these discerning reflections by art historian Matthew Milliner. In this fifth volume in the Hansen Lectureship Series, Milliner appeals to Chesterton's life and work―including The Everlasting Man, his neglected poetry, his love for his native England, and his own visits to America―in order to understand and appreciate both Indigenous art and the complex, often tragic history of First Nations peoples, especially in the American Midwest. The Hansen Lectureship series offers accessible and insightful reflections by Wheaton College faculty on the transformative work of the Wade Center authors.

October Book of the Month

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Letters to a Young Brown Girl

by Professor Barbara Jane Reyes

Barbara Jane Reyes answers the questions of Filipino American girls and young women of color with bold affirmations of hard-won empathy, fierce intelligence, and a fine-tuned B.S. detector.

The Brown Girl of these poems is fed up with being shushed, with being constantly told how foreign and unattractive and unwanted she is. She’s flipping tables and throwing chairs. She’s raising her voice. She’s keeping a sharp focus on the violences committed against her every day, and she’s writing through the depths of her “otherness” to find beauty and even grace amidst her rage. Simultaneously looking into the mirror and out into the world, Reyes exposes the sensitive nerve-endings of life under patriarchy as a visible immigrant woman of color as she reaches towards her unflinching center.

September Book of the Month

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Hermanas: Deepening Our Identity and Growing Our Influence

by Ms. Natalia Kohn Rivera, Ms. Noemi Vega QuiñonesMs. Kristy Garza Robinson

God calls Latinas to lives of influence. He created his Latina daughters to partner with him, live into the incredible plans he has for each of us, and walk in his grace and strength to help change this world. But many of us have heard cultural messages that make us doubt our adequacy. We have not seen many Latina women in positions of leadership, and we need more mentors and role models. Natalia Kohn, Noemi Vega Quiñones, and Kristy Garza Robinson share their own journeys as Latinas and leaders. They find mentorship in twelve inspirational women of the Bible including Esther, Rahab, Mary, and Lydia, who navigated challenges of brokenness and suffering, being bicultural, and crossing borders. As we deepen our spiritual and ethnic identities, we grow in intimacy with God and others and become better equipped to influence others for the kingdom. The insights here will help any who seek to empower Latinas in leadership. You are not alone on this journey. Join your sisters and partner with our heavenly Father as you become the Latina leader God has called you to be.

August Book of the Month

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Christians at the Border: Immigration, the Church, and the Bible

by Dr. Daniel M. Carroll Rodas 

Immigration is one of the most pressing issues on the national agenda. This accessible book provides biblical and ethical guidance for readers who are looking for a Christian perspective on the immigration issue. As both a Guatemalan and an American, the author has immersed himself in this issue and is uniquely qualified to write about it. Drawing on key biblical ideas, he speaks to both the immigrant culture and the host culture, arguing that both sides have much to learn about the debate. This timely, clear, and compassionate resource will benefit all Christians who are thinking through the immigration issue.

 

July Book of the Month

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Reparations: A Christian Call for Repentance and Repair

by Rev. Duke L. Kwon and Rev. Dr. Gregory Thompson

Christians are awakening to the legacy of racism in America like never before. While public conversations regarding the realities of racial division and inequalities have surged in recent years, so has the public outcry to work toward the long-awaited healing of these wounds. But American Christianity, with its tendency to view the ministry of reconciliation as its sole response to racial injustice, and its isolation from those who labor most diligently to address these things, is underequipped to offer solutions. Because of this, the church needs a new perspective on its responsibility for the deep racial brokenness at the heart of American culture and on what it can do to repair that brokenness.

This book makes a compelling historical and theological case for the church's obligation to provide reparations for the oppression of African Americans. Duke Kwon and Gregory Thompson articulate the church's responsibility for its promotion and preservation of white supremacy throughout history, investigate the Bible's call to repair our racial brokenness, and offer a vision for the work of reparation at the local level. They lead readers toward a moral imagination that views reparations as a long-overdue and necessary step in our collective journey toward healing and wholeness.

June Book of the Month

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The Empathy Effect: Seven Neuroscience-Based Keys for Transforming the Way We Live, Love, Work, and Connect Across Differences

by Helen Riess MD 

Empathy is undergoing a new evolution. In a global and interconnected culture, we can no longer afford to identify only with people who seem to be a part of our "tribe." As Dr. Helen Riess has learned, our capacity for empathy is not just an innate trait―it is also a skill that we can learn and expand. With The Empathy Effect, Dr. Riess presents a definitive resource on empathy: the science behind how it works, new research on how empathy develops from birth to adulthood, and tools for building your capacity to create an authentic emotional connection with others in any situation.

Dr. Riess emerged as the leading researcher on empathy by creating a breakthrough training curriculum now used internationally in health care, business, and education. Drawing from this successful program and the latest science, she presents:

• The E.M.P.A.T.H.Y.® method―a powerful seven-step system for understanding and increasing empathy, starting with Eye Contact and ending with Your Response
• How empathy works―a comprehensive synthesis emerging from neuroscience, sociology, developmental psychology, and evolutionary theory
• Tools for recognizing and promoting empathic behavior in yourself and others
• Parenting and teaching empathy in kids―guidance for every stage of development
• Texts, emojis, and digital empathy―the modern challenge of authentic connection in the information age
• Empathy through art and literature―exploring the power of creative expression to expand our emotional experience
• Leading with empathy―how political and business leaders can combine compassion with efficiency through group empathy skills and shared mind intelligence
• Digging deep for empathy―how to reverse scapegoating and recognize shared humanity with those we normally keep at a distance
• Self-compassion―why your ability to express love toward yourself affects every other relationship in your life

"Nourishing empathy lets us help not just ourselves," says Dr. Riess, "but also everyone we interact with, whether for a moment or a lifetime." The Empathy Effect is a life-changing book that will revolutionize the way you understand yourself, relate to your loved ones and connect to every person in your life.

May Book of the Month

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A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota

by Ms. Sun Yung Shin 

In this provocative book, sixteen of Minnesota's best writers provide a range of perspectives on what it is like to live as a person of color in Minnesota. They give readers a splendid gift: the gift of touching another human being's inner reality, behind masks and veils and politeness. They bring us generously into experiences that we must understand if we are to come together in real relationships.

Minnesota communities struggle with some of the nation's worst racial disparities. As its authors confront and consider the realities that lie beneath the numbers, this book provides an important tool to those who want to be part of closing those gaps.

With contributions by:
Taiyon J. Coleman, Heid E. Erdrich, Venessa Fuentes, Shannon Gibney, David Grant, Carolyn Holbrook, IBé, Andrea Jenkins, Robert Karimi, JaeRan Kim, Sherry Quan Lee, David Mura, Bao Phi, Rodrigo Sanchez-Chavarria, Diane Wilson, and Kao Kalia Yang

April Book of the Month

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The Contextualized Psalms (Punjabi Zabur) 

by Dr. Yousaf Sadiq

The metrical translation of the Psalms into the Punjabi language, set to indigenous music in the late nineteenth century in India, plays a vital role in the personal and communal worship of the global Punjabi Christian community. This book is a pioneer work that comprehensively encompasses the cultural, socio-historical, missional, and sociolinguistic aspects of the Punjabi Psalter.

It investigates the unique and fascinating story of the contextualizing of Psalms in an exclusive South Asian Punjabi context and engages in an in-depth study on the life and work of Rev. Dr. Imam-ud-Din Shahbaz. This work determines to bring a deeper appreciation for the Punjabi Psalter by encouraging the Punjabi Christians to not only pass the Psalms on to the next generations but also to grow in loving and valuing their mother-tongue, the Punjabi language.

The thrust of this book is to esteem the shared heritage of the global Punjabi Christian community--the Psalms in Punjabi, commonly known as the Punjabi Zabur.

March Book of the Month

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My Own Words

by Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

My Own Words “showcases Justice Ruth Ginsburg’s astonishing intellectual range” (The New Republic). In this collection, Justice Ginsburg discussed gender equality, the workings of the Supreme Court, being Jewish, law and lawyers in opera, and the value of looking beyond US shores when interpreting the US Constitution. Throughout her life, Justice Ginsburg was (and continues to be) a prolific writer and public speaker.

This book’s sampling is selected by Justice Ginsburg and her authorized biographers Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams, who introduce each chapter and provide biographical context and quotes gleaned from hundreds of interviews they conducted. Witty, engaging, serious, and playful, My Own Words is a fascinating glimpse into the life of one of America’s most influential women and “a tonic to the current national discourse” (The Washington Post).

February Book of the Month

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Reading While Black

by Dr. Esau McCaulley

Growing up in the American South, Esau McCaulley knew firsthand the ongoing struggle between despair and hope that marks the lives of some in the African American context. A key element in the fight for hope, he discovered, has long been the practice of Bible reading and interpretation that comes out of traditional Black churches. This ecclesial tradition is often disregarded or viewed with suspicion by much of the wider church and academy, but it has something vital to say.

Reading While Black is a personal and scholarly testament to the power and hope of Black biblical interpretation. At a time in which some within the African American community are questioning the place of the Christian faith in the struggle for justice, New Testament scholar McCaulley argues that reading Scripture from the perspective of Black church tradition is invaluable for connecting with a rich faith history and addressing the urgent issues of our times. He advocates for a model of interpretation that involves an ongoing conversation between the collective Black experience and the Bible, in which the particular questions coming out of Black communities are given pride of place and the Bible is given space to respond by affirming, challenging, and, at times, reshaping Black concerns. McCaulley demonstrates this model with studies on how Scripture speaks to topics often overlooked by white interpreters, such as ethnicity, political protest, policing, and slavery.

Ultimately McCaulley calls the church to a dynamic theological engagement with Scripture, in which Christians of diverse backgrounds dialogue with their own social location as well as the cultures of others. Reading While Black moves the conversation forward.

January Book of the Month

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Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos of Community

by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King

In 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., isolated himself from the demands of the civil rights movement, rented a house in Jamaica with no telephone and labored over his final manuscript. In this prophetic work, which has been unavailable for more than ten years, he lays out his thoughts, plans, and dreams for America’s future, including the need for better jobs, higher wages, decent housing, and quality education. With a universal message of hope that continues to resonate, King demanded an end to global suffering, asserting that humankind-for the first time-has the resources and technology to eradicate poverty.


2020

December Book of the Month

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Becoming Brave: Finding the Courage to Pursue Racial Justice Now

by Dr. Brenda Salter McNeil

Reconciliation is not true reconciliation without justice! Brenda Salter McNeil has come to this conviction as she has led the church in pursuing reconciliation efforts over the past three decades. McNeil calls the church to repair the old reconciliation paradigm by moving beyond individual racism to address systemic injustice, both historical and present. It’s time for the church to go beyond individual reconciliation and “heart change” and to boldly mature in its response to racial division.

Looking through the lens of the biblical narrative of Esther, McNeil challenges Christian reconcilers to recognize the particular pain in our world so they can work together to repair what is broken while maintaining a deep hope in God’s ongoing work for justice. This book provides education and prophetic inspiration for every person who wants to take reconciliation seriously.

Becoming Brave offers a distinctly Christian framework for addressing systemic injustice. It challenges Christians to be everyday activists who become brave enough to break the silence and work with others to dismantle systems of injustice and inequality.

November Book of the Month

cropHoly Smoke: The Contextual Use of Native American Ritual and Ceremony 

by Dr. Casey Church

Church argues that discipleship among Native peoples is best undertaken as a spiritual journey that has at its core biblical instruction and mentoring by individuals and families that model a lifestyle that reflects transformation in Jesus Christ. When accompanied by the ‘contextual’ use of Native rites such as the Sweat Lodge Ceremony, the Pipe Ceremony, and Powwow dancing and singing with the drum, participants who go through these ‘rites of passage’ experience an increased sense of spiritual well-being and self-esteem through this authentic Native expression of their Christian faith. The book illustrates deep reflection and integration of biblical teaching in the preparation and practice of these Native rites, transforming the old embedded meanings of these rites while retaining their distinctive familiarity for participants. Church shows how the integration of biblical instruction, the practice of a biblical lifestyle, and contextual sacred and ceremonial rites in alcohol recovery and family camp ministries have together led to recovery and spiritual development in Christ.

October Book of the Month

 cropBrown Skin, White Minds: Filipino -/ American Postcolonial Psychology

by E. J. R. David

Filipino Americans have a long and rich history with and within the United States, and they are currently the second-largest Asian group in the country. However, very little is known about how their historical and contemporary relationship with America may shape their psychological experiences. The most insidious psychological consequence of their historical and contemporary experiences is colonial mentality or internalized oppression. Some common manifestations of this phenomenon are described below:

*Skin-whitening products are used often by Filipinos in the Philippines to make their skins lighter. Skin whitening clinics and businesses are popular in the Philippines as well. The "beautiful" people such as actors and other celebrities endorse these skin-whitening procedures. Children are told to stay away from the sun so they do not get "too dark." Many Filipinos also regard anything "imported" to be more special than anything "local" or made in the Philippines.

*In the United States, many Filipino Americans make fun of "fresh-off-the-boats" (FOBs) or those who speak English with Filipino accents. Many Filipino Americans try to dilute their "Filipino-ness" by saying that they are mixed with some other races. Also, many Filipino Americans regard Filipinos in the Philippines, and pretty much everything about the Philippines, to be of "lower class" and those of the "third world."

The historical and contemporary reasons for why Filipino -/ Americans display these attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors - often referred to as colonial mentality - are explored in Brown Skin, White Minds.

This book is a peer-reviewed publication that integrates knowledge from multiple scholarly and scientific disciplines to identify the past and current catalysts for such self-denigrating attitudes and behaviors. It takes the reader from indigenous Tao culture, Spanish and American colonialism, colonial mentality or internalized oppression along with its implications on Kapwa, identity, and mental health, to decolonization in the clinical, community, and research settings. This book is intended for the entire community - teachers, researchers, students, and service providers interested in or who are working with Filipinos and Filipino Americans, or those who are interested in the psychological consequences of colonialism and oppression. This book may serve as a tool for remembering the past and as a tool for awakening to address the present.

September Book of the Month

 cropThe Bible and Borders: Hearing God's Word on Immigration

by Dr. Daniel M. Carroll Rodas

With so many people around the globe migrating, how should Christians and the church respond? Leading Latino-American biblical scholar M. Daniel Carroll R. (Rodas) helps readers understand what the Bible says about immigration, offering accessible, nuanced, and sympathetic guidance for the church.

After two successful editions of Christians at the Border, and having talked and written about immigration over the past decade, Carroll has sharpened his focus and refined his argument to make sure we hear clearly what the Bible says about one of the most pressing issues of our day. He has reworked the biblical material, adding insights and broadening the frame of reference beyond the US. As Carroll explores the surprising amount of material in the Old and New Testaments that deals with migration, he shows how this topic is fundamental to the message of the Bible and how it affects our understanding of God and the mission of the church.

August Book of the Month

The Plague

by Albert Camus

A haunting tale of human resilience and hope in the face of unrelieved horror, Albert Camus' iconic novel about an epidemic ravaging the people of a North African coastal town is a classic of twentieth-century literature.

The townspeople of Oran are in the grip of a deadly plague, which condemns its victims to a swift and horrifying death. Fear, isolation, and claustrophobia follow as they are forced into quarantine. Each person responds in their own way to the lethal disease: some resign themselves to fate, some seek blame, and a few, like Dr. Rieux, resist the terror.

An immediate triumph when it was published in 1947, The Plague is in part an allegory of France's suffering under the Nazi occupation, and a timeless story of bravery and determination against the precariousness of human existence.

July Book of the Month

cropHow to be an Antiracist

by Ibram X. Kendi

Ibram X. Kendi's concept of antiracism reenergizes and reshapes the conversation about racial justice in America--but even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. Instead of working with the policies and systems we have in place, Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it.

In his memoir, Kendi weaves together an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science--including the story of his own awakening to antiracism--bringing it all together in a cogent, accessible form. He begins by helping us rethink our most deeply held, if implicit, beliefs and our most intimate personal relationships (including beliefs about race and IQ and interracial social relations) and reexamines the policies and larger social arrangements we support. How to Be an Antiracist promises to become an essential book for anyone who wants to go beyond an awareness of racism to the next step of contributing to the formation of a truly just and equitable society.

June Book of the Month

cropThe New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in The Age of Colorblindness

by Michelle Alexander

Seldom does a book have the impact of Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow. Since it was first published in 2010, it has been cited in judicial decisions and has been adopted in campus-wide and community-wide reads; it helped inspire the creation of the Marshall Project and the new $100 million Art for Justice Fund; it has been the winner of numerous prizes, including the prestigious NAACP Image Award; and it has spent nearly 250 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list.

Most important of all, it has spawned a whole generation of criminal justice reform activists and organizations motivated by Michelle Alexander’s unforgettable argument that “we have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it.” As the Birmingham News proclaimed, it is “undoubtedly the most important book published in this century about the U.S.”

May Book of the Month

cropThe Myh of Equality: Uncovering the Roots of Injustice and Privilege

by Ken Wytsma

Is privilege real or imagined? It's clear that issues of race and equality have come to the forefront in our nation's consciousness. Every week yet another incident involving racial tension splashes across headlines and dominates our news feeds. But it's not easy to unpack the origins of these tensions, and perhaps we wonder whether any of these issues really has anything to do with us. Ken Wytsma, founder of the Justice Conference, understands these questions. He has gone through his own journey of understanding the underpinnings of inequality and privilege.In this timely, insightful book Wytsma unpacks what we need to know to be grounded in conversations about today's race-related issues. And he helps us come to a deeper understanding of both the origins of these issues and the reconciling role we are called to play as witnesses of the gospel. Inequality and privilege are real. The Myth of Equality opens our eyes to realities we may have never realized were present in our society and world. And we will be changed for the better as a result.

April Book of the Month

cropThe Model Minority Stereotype: Demystifying Asian American Success

by Dr. Nicholas D. Hartlep

Researchers, higher education administrators, and high school and university students desire a sourcebook like The Model Minority Stereotype: Demystifying Asian American Success. This book will assist readers in locating research and literature on the model minority stereotype. This sourcebook is composed of an annotated bibliography on the stereotype that Asian Americans are successful. The most powerful resource for scholars to use and teachers to read must not simply duplicate what others (and previous literature) have written about, but must challenge it. Each chapter in The Model Minority Stereotype is thematic and challenges the model minority stereotype. Consisting of ten chapters, this book is the most comprehensive book written on the model minority myth to date.

April Book of the Month

cropFaithful Generations: Race and New Asian American Churches

by Dr. Russell Jeung

Faithful Generations details the significance of religion in the construction of Asian American identity. As an institutional base for the movement toward Asian American panethnicity, churches provide a space for theological and political reflection and ethnic reinvention.

With rich description and insightful interviews, Russell Jeung uncovers why and how Chinese and Japanese American Christians are building new, pan-Asian organizations. Detailed surveys of over fifty Chinese and Japanese American congregations in the San Francisco Bay area show how symbolic racial identities structure Asian American congregations. Evangelical ministers differ from mainline Christian ministers in their construction of Asian American identity. Mobilizing around these distinct identities, evangelicals and mainline Christians have developed unique pan-Asian styles of worship, ministries, and church activities. Portraits of two churches further illustrate how symbolic racial identities affect congregational life and ministries. The book concludes with a look at Asian American–led multiethnic churches.

This engaging study of the shifting relationship between religion and ethnicity is an ideal text for classes in ethnicity, religion, and Asian American studies.

March Book of the Month

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Singled Out: Why Celibacy Must Be Reinvented in Today’s Church

by Dr. Christine A. Colón and Dr. Bonnie E. Field

Authors Christine Colón and Bonnie Field thought that by a certain age they would each be married. But they watched that age come and go--and still no walk down the aisle. In Singled Out, Colón and Field reflect on their experience--and that of an increasing number of Christians--as they try to reconcile God's plan for their lives with the messages they receive about singleness from the world around them.

From the secular world and the evangelical church, they are bombarded with negative images of celibacy. Here, Colón and Field explore a deeper understanding of celibacy that affirms singles' decisions to be sexually pure, acknowledges their struggles, and recognizes their importance in the church community.

March Book of the Month

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A Woman and Her God: Life-Enriching Messages

by Beth Moore

At our best, we feel average. At our worst, we feel like we’ll never measure up to people’s expectations. Yet God says that you are extraordinary. And He invites you to a closer relationship with Him. In A Woman and Her God, several of today’s most beloved Christian communicators share insights that will help you grow closer to your heavenly Father: Learn the secret to what makes life work. Discover how God really views you Live out God’s purpose at every stage of life. Remove your prejudices and enjoy unity with others. Get outside your "God-Box" and trust Him no matter what as you read these chapters from Beth Moore, Jill Briscoe, Sandra D. Wilson, Kathleen Hart, Dr. David Hager, Thelma Wells, and Beverly LaHaye, you will discover how to deepen your relationship with our awesome, loving God. He wants to be not just your creator, but your companion, so that you may see yourself as you truly are and live the extraordinary life to which He has called you.

February Book of the Month

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Hard Questions, Heart Answers: Sermons and Speech

by Rev. Dr. Bernice A. King

Dr. Bernice A. King, the youngest daughter of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Coretta Scott King, is an ordained minister, an attorney, and one of this country's most admired speakers. As this remarkable collection of her sermons and speeches makes clear, she shares with her father a rare gift for oratory and the wisdom and compassion to inspire others.

The collection begins with words designed to "disturb the comfortable." Tackling such controversial subjects as our disaffected youth, gun control, and the death penalty, King paints a compelling picture of the spiritual decay and deep-seated racism that infects our society. In the second part of the book, a selection of sermons focusing on "comforting the disturbed," King's belief in the power of faith to restore our communities, morally and spiritually, rings forth. The church, she asserts, must return to its helping and healing mission, and each of us, looking into our hearts, must put aside our differences and remember that each human life is precious.

January Book of the Month

cropWhy We Can't Wait

by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Often applauded as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s most incisive and eloquent book recounts the Birmingham campaign in vivid detail while underscoring why 1963 was such a crucial year for the civil rights movement. During this time, Birmingham, Alabama, was perhaps the most racially segregated city in the United States, but the campaign launched by Fred Shuttlesworth, King, and others demonstrated to the world the power of nonviolent direct action. King examines the history of the civil rights struggle and the tasks that future generations must accomplish to bring about full equality. The book also includes the extraordinary “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” which King wrote in April of 1963.


2019

December Book of the Month 

cropThe Diary of a Young Girl

by Anne Frank

Discovered in the attic in which she spent the last years of her life, Anne Frank's remarkable diary has become a world classic and a powerful reminder of the horrors of war and an eloquent testament to the human spirit.

In 1942, with the Nazis occupying Holland, a thirteen-year-old Jewish girl and her family fled their home in Amsterdam and went into hiding. For the next two years, the Franks and another family lived cloistered in the “Secret Annexe” of an old office building. Cut off from the outside world, they faced hunger, boredom, the constant cruelties of living in confined quarters, and the ever-present threat of discovery and death.

November Book of the Month

cropOne Church, Many Tribes 

by Richard Twiss

In this captivating chronicle of the Native American story, Richard Twiss of the Rosebud Lakota/Sioux sifts through myth and legend to reveal God's strategy for the nation's host people.

With wit, wisdom, and passion, Twiss shows God's desire to use the cultures of First Nations peoples--in all their mystery, color, and beauty.

One Church, Many Tribes is a rallying cry for the Church to work as one so that the lost may learn to walk in life with beauty, along the path of the Waymaker.

September & October Book of the Month

(In Honor of Hispanic Heritage Month)

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The Weight of All Things 

by Sandra Benítez

You are invited to join us as we journey with young Nicolás into a story of deeply held faith in the midst of suffering and loss. Reading The Weight of All Things may lead us to echo Nicolás’ question, “Where are you, God, in all of this?” and watch for ways that we may, like Nicolás, live with the “courage of a lion” and the “heart of a lamb.”

By reading and participating in the, you will have the opportunity to enter into our community of learning and experience part of Christ at the Core. As we read The Weight of All Things, we will face enduring questions about faith in the face of evil, the impact of war and poverty upon ordinary people, and God’s providence. Sandra Benítez’s novel introduces us to a people and culture characterized by longstanding Catholic traditions and embattled by daily conflict. As we enter into this fictional story, we will also encounter historical events—the Salvadoran civil war and displaced peoples—that challenge us to consider the long-term and unintended consequences of political violence and how we as Christians should respond.

August Book of the Month

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White Awake 

by Daniel Hill

Daniel Hill will never forget the day he heard these words:

"Daniel, you may be white, but don't let that lull you into thinking you have no culture. White culture is very real. In fact, when white culture comes in contact with other cultures, it almost always wins. So it would be a really good idea for you to learn about your culture."

Confused and unsettled by this encounter, Hill began a journey of understanding his own white identity. Today he is an active participant in addressing and confronting racial and systemic injustices. And in this compelling and timely book, he shows you the seven stages to expect on your own path to cultural awakening.

It's crucial to understand both personal and social realities in the areas of race, culture, and identity. White Awake will give you a new perspective on being white and also empower you to be an agent of reconciliation in our increasingly diverse and divided world.

July Book of the Month

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Driven by Difference

by David Livermore

Today’s boardrooms think tanks, and staff lounges are more diverse than ever before. But these cultural differences can either lead to gridlock among uniformed thinkers or they can catalyze innovation and growth among an expansive team of creative, distinctive individuals. Diverse teams are far more creative than homogenous teams--but only when they are managed effectively. In Driven by Difference, David Livermore identifies the management practices necessary to minimize conflict while maximizing the informational diversity found in varied values and experiences. Drawing on the cultural intelligence, or CQ, of diversity success stories from Google, Alibaba, Novartis, and other groundbreaking companies, this must-have resource teaches managers of diverse groups how to:• Create an optimal environment• Consider the various audiences when selecting and selling an idea• Design and test for different users• Fuse differing perspectives• Align goals and expectations• And more new perspectives and talents have joined their company’s ranks in recent years.

June Book of the Month

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Diversity Explosion

by William H. Frey

 Through a compelling narrative and eye-catching charts and maps, eminent demographer Frey interprets and expounds on the dramatic growth of minority populations in the United States. He finds that without these expanding groups, America could face a bleak future: this new generation of young minorities, who are having children at a faster rate than whites, is infusing our aging labor force with vitality and innovation. In contrast with the labor force-age population of Japan, Germany, Italy, and the United Kingdom, the U.S. labor force-age population is set to grow 5 percent by 2030. Diversity Explosion shares the good news about diversity in the coming decades, and the more globalized, multiracial country that the U.S. is becoming.

May Book of the Month

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Not Quite Not White

by Sharmila Sen

 At the age of 12, Sharmila Sen emigrated from India to the U.S. The year was 1982, and everywhere she turned, she was asked to self-report her race - on INS forms, at the doctor's office, in middle school. Never identifying with a race in the India of her childhood, she rejects her new "not quite" designation - not quite white, not quite black, not quite Asian -- and spends much of her life attempting to blend into American whiteness. But after her teen years trying to assimilate--watching shows like General Hospital and The Jeffersons, dancing to Duran Duran and Prince, and perfecting the art of Jell-O no-bake desserts--she is forced to reckon with the hard questions: What does it mean to be white, why does whiteness retain the magic cloak of invisibility while other colors are made hypervisible, and how much does whiteness figure into Americanness?

Part memoir, part manifesto, Not Quite Not White is a searing appraisal of race and a path forward for the next not quite not white generation --a witty and sharply honest story of discovering that not-whiteness can be the very thing that makes us American.

April Book of the Month

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American Born Chinese

by Gene Luen Yang

American Born Chinese starts at a new school where Jin Wang is the only Chinese-American student. When a boy from Taiwan joins his class, Jin doesn't want to be associated with someone like him. Jin just wants to be an all-American boy, because he's in love with an all-American girl. Danny is an all-American boy: great at basketball, popular with the girls. But his obnoxious Chinese cousin’s annual visit is such a disaster that it ruins Danny's reputation at school, leaving him with no choice but to transfer somewhere he can start all over again. The Monkey King has lived for thousands of years and mastered the arts of Kung Fu and the heavenly disciplines. He's ready to join the ranks of the immortal gods in heaven. But there's no place in heaven for a monkey. Each of these characters cannot help himself alone, but how can they possibly help each other? They're going to have to find a way―if they want to fix the disasters their lives have become.

March Book of the Month

Book cover of What Works: Gender Equality by Design by Iris Bohnet

 What Works: Gender Equality by Design 

 by Iris Bohnet 

What Works is built on new insights into the human mind. It draws on data collected by companies, universities, and governments in Australia, India, Norway, the United Kingdom, the United States, Zambia, and other countries, often in randomized controlled trials. It points out dozens of evidence-based interventions that could be adopted right now and demonstrates how research is addressing gender bias, improving lives and performance. What Works shows what more can be done―often at shockingly low cost and surprisingly high speed.

February Book of the Month


Diversity Matters Book Cover

Diversity Matters: Race, Ethnicity, & the Future of Christian Higher Education

by Karen A. Longman, Ph. D. 

Diversity Matters: Race, Ethnicity, & the Future of Christian Higher Education features essays from student development professionals and scholars across the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities, including several from Wheaton College including our very own  '84, October 7, 1962 - December 30, 2018.

In their essays, Wheaton College staff, faculty, alumni and a trustee reflect on their experiences as members of campuses that seek to develop Christ-centered diversity.

In his chapter "The Music God Puts in Your Heart: Reflections from an Ongoing Journey" Rodney Sisco, the former Director of the Office of Multicultural Development, compares his years of service at Wheaton College to someone listening to a complex jazz composition: a combination of consistency and artistry. He writes,

“The complexity of music pales in comparison to the complexity of understanding diversity in contemporary society. Just as listening to a complex composition requires focus and diligence, so too does the conversation of diversity. Longevity in Christian higher education for me has been to find that balance of consistency and artistry akin to finding the groove of a song.”

He adds that a sense of the Lord’s unique calling has enabled him to persist in his service at Wheaton for more than three decades.

January Book of the Month

I'm Still Here Book Cover

I'm Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness

by Austin Channing Brown  

In a time when nearly all institutions (schools, churches, universities, businesses) claim to value "diversity" in their mission statements, I'm Still Here is a powerful account of how and why our actions so often fall short of our words. Austin writes in breathtaking detail about her journey to self-worth and the pitfalls that kill our attempts at racial justice, in stories that bear witness to the complexity of America's social fabric--from Black Cleveland neighborhoods to private schools in the middle-class suburbs, from prison walls to the boardrooms at majority-white organizations. 

I'm Still Here is an illuminating look at how white, middle-class, Evangelicalism has participated in an era of rising racial hostility, inviting the reader to confront apathy, recognize God's ongoing work in the world, and discover how blackness--if we let it--can save us all.


 2018

December Book of the Month


A Sojourner's Truth Book Cover

A Sojourner's Truth: Choosing Freedom and Courage in a Divided World

by Natasha Sistrunk Robinson 

A Sojourner's Truth is an African American girl’s journey from South Carolina to the United States Naval Academy, and then to her calling as an international speaker, mentor, and thought-leader.

Intertwined with Natasha's story is the story of Moses, a leader who was born into a marginalized people group, resisted the injustices of Pharaoh, denied the power of Egypt, and trusted God even when he did not fully understand where he was going. Along the way, we explore the spiritual and physical tensions of truth-telling, character and leadership development, and bridge-building across racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, and gender lines.

Join the journey to discover your own identity, purpose, and truth-revealing moments.

November Book of the Month

The House on Mango Street Book Cover

The House on Mango Street

by Sandra Cisneros  

Told in a series of vignettes stunning for their eloquence, The House on Mango Street is Sandra Cisneros's greatly admired novel of a young girl growing up in the Latino section of Chicago. Acclaimed by critics, beloved by children, their parents, and grandparents taught everywhere from inner-city grade schools to universities across the country, and translated all over the world, it has entered the canon of coming-of-age classics.

Sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes deeply joyous, The House on Mango Street tells the story of Esperanza Cordero, whose neighborhood is one of harsh realities and harsh beauty. Esperanza doesn't want to belong -- not to her rundown neighborhood, and not to the low expectations the world has for her. Esperanza's story is that of a young girl coming into her power, and inventing for herself what she will become.