Six New Things – Week of February 22, 2021

Blessing and belonging, empowerment and embrace fill out this week’s highlights:


Nutrition expert Alexandra Mackillop confronts the culturally engineered hyper-criticism of women’s bodies by examining how dieting harms both physical and spiritual health, then empowers readers to bless their body with a more intuitive framework for eating that emphasizes mindfulness, satisfaction, and surrender in Fulfilled: Let Go of Shame, Embrace Your Body and Eat the Food You Love (Broadleaf).


Let your cup overflow by listening to Krista Tippett’s “wondrous and far-reaching conversation with Rabbi Ariel Burger“, (author of Witness: Lessons from Elie Wiesel’s Classroom). Be a Blessing explores how we can speak well with each other in tense times and how religious groups might respond to questions about repairing, renewing, and remaking our societies and our life together with moral courage.

Additional tips for experiencing and sharing blessing are found in Alan Wright’s The Power to Bless (Baker).

Find more resources for empowerment in our Leadership Development and Developing Young Leaders lib guides.


Let the blessings flow through you and your leaders out into the community: Naaima Khan, Owner and Principal of Create Good, a consultancy that helps organizations more effectively pursue anti-racism work, invites us to experience Racial Equity as Spiritual Healing in Church Anew’s weekly blog.


Poet Padraig O’Tuama and theologian Glenn Jordan encourage us to expand our embrace in their Borders and Belonging: the Book of Ruth: A Story for Our Times (WJK), reflecting on the book’s themes of “migration, the stranger, mixed cultures and religions, law and leadership, women in public life, kindness, generosity and fear”. Watch a recorded conversation about the book, between OnBeing’s Ben Katt and author Padraig O’Tuama, here.


Empowerment comes right back to the local congregation in Allen T. Stanton’s Reclaiming Rural: Building Thriving Rural Congregations (Rowman & Littlefield), which acknowledges the many challenges facing rural churches even as it energetically encourages congregations to become leaders in economic and community development.


And finally, a little thing from a big state that may be just what you and/or your congregation need to hear. Rev. Elsa Cook offers an Affirmation of Faith for Texas, with full permission to adapt it to your local context for this coming – or any – Sunday.

May there be a blessing in here somewhere for you, blessed leaders!

And let us know how we can be a blessing to you by completing our five-question survey!