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Posted August 28, 2005

Book: Scripture as the Soul of Theology
Editor: Edward J. Mahoney
Liturgical Press, Collegeville, MN, pp97

An Excerpt from the Jacket:

In Scripture as the Soul of Theology five biblical scholars explore the Scriptures for insight and vision about how Christians may refashion their approach to ethics, spirituality, pastoral care, and the ministry of women in the Church.

An Excerpt from the Book:

Christian pastoral care takes many forms. Sometimes I envision it as following along the lines of the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. Pastoral care becomes the practices of feeding the hungry, giving drink to the thirsty, clothing the naked, sheltering the homeless, visiting the sick, visiting the imprisoned, burying the dead. In other words, pastoral care walks with people as we experience the precariousness of physical existence. It also engages in practices of counseling the doubtful, instructing the ignorant, admonishing the sinner, comforting the sorrowful, forgiving injuries, bearing wrongs patiently, and praying for the living and the dead. In other words, pastoral care walks wit the people as we experience the precariousness of moral and psychological existence.

But whatever form pastoral care takes, it is essentially interpersonal activity. On the social level, it is expected that the consciousness of the pastoral care minister is structured by the Christian revelation to such an extent that the care they provide flows from the open space of their soul and carries the potential of awakening the mind of the person cared for to that same resourceful place within themselves. If Scripture is involved in the caring situation, the text has to be spoken from a consciousness that is appropriate to the revelation it carries. If Scripture is not involved in the caring situation, still all the words and actions of caring should come from a space informed by the revelation that the inspired text makes available. This means previous meditation on the texts by the pastoral care minister. This meditation should combine study and prayer. But most of all, it should be a way the soul is uncovered, nurtured, and readied for action. In this way Scripture is a resource for pastoral care in that in forms of the person of the pastoral care minister and informs the pastoral care process itself.

Table of Contents:

Biblical foundations of spirituality

New Testament foundations for Christian ethics

Women in the New Testament

Persevering the Perfect Law of Liberty

Scripture as the soul of theology: a reprise