C. Christopher Smith: How the Body of Christ Talks

Recovering the Practice of Conversation in the Church

How the Body of Christ Talks
(Brazos Press, 2019)

WHO: C. Christopher Smith, editor of The Englewood Review of Books.

HE SAYS: “Given our formation in a fragmented world that has little capacity for conversation, we desperately need to practice the discipline of conversation in our local church communities in order to mature in the witness we bear to the conversational nature of the Triune God and the dialogue of salvation into which God has invited humanity.”

THE BIG IDEA: Conversation should be one of the church’s defining marks. How can churches initiate and sustain practices of conversation?

THE PROGRESSION:
Part 1, “Setting Out on the Journey,” offers some wisdom for churches that desire to begin practicing conversation. Part 2, “A Spirituality for the Journey,” identifies three other practices that will help church members converse better with one another. Part 3, “Sustaining the Journey,” explores how we can keep moving on with the journey in spite of obstacles.

“The abundant life into which we have been called in Jesus, and into which we invite our neighbors, is one of conversation and presence, of knowing and being known.”

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