Not your typical “last-minute” pre-Christmas fare: this week, we’re digging into the hope and peace of identity, sustainability, simplicity, health and mortality, relevancy, and our cosmic locality – with a dash of Advent on the side.

ONE

Amanda Gorman‘s debut poetry collection – on hope and healing – Call Us What We Carry (Penguin/Random House) includes, ‘The Hill We Climb’ and other stellar works; suitable for worship, prayer, and study.

TWO

Everyone Must Eat: Food Sustainability and Ministry (Fortress), from Shalom Hills Farms executive director Mark Yackel-Juleen, offers “a clear set of powerful and actionable tools” to help rural leaders integrate community, economics, public policy, and God’s presence.

THREE

In a more personal approach to sustainability, Rachelle Crawford‘s Messy Minimalism: Realistic Strategies for the Rest of Us (Broadleaf) promises tips for “carrying fewer things so that we find ourselves holding onto what truly matters”.

Minimize internal clutter with Heart Medicine: How to Stop Painful Patterns and Find Peace and Freedom – at last (Penguin/Random House), which shares 12 simple steps, along with guided mindfulness practices, to create freedom from life’s painful recurring patterns.

FOUR

Our Last Best Act: Planning for the End of Our Lives to Protect the People and Places We Love (Broadleaf), “opens the conversation about the choices we make – and how it’s possible for our death to honor our values, create a sustainable legacy, and help to heal the earth.”

FIVE

For those who know about it, Richard Rohr’s The Cosmic Egg needs no introduction. For those new to it: read all about it in the latest edition of the CAC’s Oneing: The Cosmic Egg – in both hardcopy and downloadable pdf.

SIX

And if you’re still figuring out what to do for worship this Advent and Christmas, check out Church Anew’s free, recorded Service of Lessons & Carols.

For other options, see our Fresh & Free Resources, including Dreams for a New Day: An Intergenerational Advent Pageant Liturgy and accompanying study guide; two Illustrate-Your-Own Christmas sermons; and soon, a members-only link to a recorded Epiphany service.

Find additional Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany resources for faith formation and worship in our curated lists.