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Hearing the Call Across Traditions: Readings on Faith and Service

Skylight Paths Publishing,


RRP $26.95

Reviewed by Bob Warrick.

THIS collection of over 50 readings from Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim and Taoist authors and traditions are grouped to encourage reflection on three questions – why do I serve, whom do I serve and how do I serve.

In our world where our neighbours and those we serve alongside in community service activities are likely to have allegiance to a number of faith traditions, having some understanding of how the faith and service of others come together can lead to a deeper understanding and appreciation of others, and of ourselves.

The editor is at pains to stress that we do not have to agree about what we believe or how we serve, but that the collection will help us to think about our own and others' commitments.

There are contributions from, among others, Martin Luther King Jnr, the Old and New Testaments, Cesar Chavez, Gerald Manley Hopkins, the Dalai Lama, Rabindranath Tagore, Mahatma Gandhi, The Qur'an, Lao-Tzu, and Rumi.

There are poems, stories, fables, parables, myths, essays, sermons, memoirs and speeches as well as a collection of short texts described as being "suitable for reading at a discussion".

One appendix has questions for discussion on each of the contributions, and another has guidelines for an interfaith reflection that includes questions for planning and strong encouragement to engage in a service-learning project associated with a discussion group.

If you have an interfaith group or activity, this book should be on your shelves.