Cultural Encounters: A Journal For The Theology Of Culture Volume 11 Number 2 (Summer 2016) - Page 125

VOLUME 11, NUMBER 2 A JOURNAL FOR THE THEOLOGY OF CULTURE arguments are compelling, convicting, and reassuring. He argues convincingly that when pastors serve in this role as public theologians, they will provide leadership for the church that only pastors can fulfill. The vision he creates for the pastor, the church, and speaking into the world are moving and exciting. Readers may wish that this chapter were longer; I know I did. The conclusion of the book gives a summary of the fifty-five theses the authors make in regards to pastors serving as public theologians. This list enables readers to review the points made throughout the book, which is quite helpful. Readers may be tempted to look at the theses before reading the entire book, but I encourage readers not to give in to temptation! Instead, one should read the entire book and then ponder if the authors have proven these to be true. In the beginning of the book, the authors state that the book is written to pastors, seminary leaders, and church leaders. These last two groups may be disappointed in that the authors present diagnoses about seminaries and church boards but do not spend enough time exploring specific ways that seminaries and church boards might help to encourage, support and prepare pastors to be public theologians. In the authors’ defense, they do explain that they will speak mostly to pastors; they merely invite seminary and church leaders to listen in on their conversation. Overall, this is a good contribution to the literature about how pastors ought to understand their roles. Upon completing the book, I spent some time prayerfully reflecting on how these principles might apply to my role as a president of a university and how our university is preparing pastors in our seminary and undergraduate programs. I also found myself saying no to good events on my calendar because I judged investing my time on the most important aspects of my responsibilities was warranted. Overall, this was definitely an important and enjoyable read. Craig Williford Multnomah University 122