A Sort of Homecoming: Essays Honoring the Academic and Community Work of Brian Walsh

We live in a culture of collective fear over climate change and mass migration, and we experience increasing intense personal anxiety and despair. How might the Bible’s themes of homecoming and homemaking address our physical, emotional, and spiritual displacement?

This collection of essays honors the academic and community work of Brian J. Walsh upon his retirement as Campus Minister at the University of Toronto Christian Reformed Campus Ministry. The collection is a stunning mosaic at once academic and personal—representing the many elements of Brian’s life as pastor, theologian, professor, farmer, mentor, and friend.

In an age when “home” feels physically and spiritually elusive for so many, this volume reawakens our imaginations to the foundational biblical themes of homecoming and homemaking. Academic, pastoral, personal, and timely, this volume honors Brian’s career and equips readers to engage the fear and anxiety of our age with the hope of the gospel.

Advance Praise for A Sort of Homecoming

“Be forewarned, this collection will leave you with a case of holy homesickness. This bouquet of contributions explores a range of themes in Brian’s work—eschatology, empire, ecology, and exegesis—held together by a robust thread of home. Poetry, places, and stories make it more than a festschrift; it’s an ode to the beauty of home and a prayer of longing to be at home—with God, one another, and all of creation.”

– Christopher B. James, author of Church Planting in Post-Christian Soil

“Whether in the dirt of the garden or in a seminary basement, Brian’s work has always been underground. This collection of subversive essays pulls us into the upside-down kingdom of God: a journey both liberating and disorienting. For some, these words will be offesnive. For others, they will be full of hope. It all depends which side of the surface you wish to make home.”

– Kevin Makins, Pastor of Eucharist Church and author of Why Would Anyone Go to Church?

“This book will open your ears to the hope and homecoming embedded in the Scripture’s story, with a chorus of voices serving as an encore to the vivid work of Brian Walsh. You should take in this show, and then read it again. It’s that good. And that important.”

– Byron Borger, Hearts and Minds Books


This book is now available through the publisher, the following bookstores, and wherever fine books are sold:

Hearts and Minds Books (Dallastown, PA)

Phone: 1.717.246.3333

Regent College Bookstore (Vancouver, BC)

Phone: 1.800.334.3279
Email: bookstore@regent-college.edu

Wipf and Stock Publishers (Eugene, OR)

Table of Contents

Preface | Andrew Stephens-Rennie

Jesus as the Face of God | Hendrik Hart

Places That Shape Us: The Long Way Home | Deborah C. Bowen

Heaven as Home in Christian Hope | Andrew T. Lincoln

Searching For Home, Discovering Peace | Jamie Howison

Reflections on Interfaith Work and City-Building: Past, Present, and Future | Joe Mihevc

Jewelry in the Apocalypse | Grant LeMarquand

Welcome Homeless: One Village Idiot’s Journey of Discovering the Meaning of Home | Alan Graham

Voices from the Ragged Edge: The Gritty Spirituality of the Lament Psalms | J. Richard Middleton

Iris and Nereus Here and Now | Greg Paul

Hospitality as Hermeneutic and Way of Life | Rachel Tulloch

Springtime in Cape Town: The Sacramental, Prophetic Imagination of Desmond Tutu | Stephen Martin

The Wit(h)ness of Suffering Love | James Olthuis

The Reconciling Power of Public Art In a Broken Home | Adrienne Dengerink Chaplin and Jonathan Chaplin

Of Tents and Temples: A Sermon for the Wine Before Breakfast Community—1 Corinthians 3 | Beth Carlson-Malena

Revillaging the City: How One Congregation Transformed Its Charitable Food Ministry to an Agent of Shalom | Andrew Stephens-Rennie

Setting Another Place at the Table | Matt Bonzo

Reconciling the World? Theology and Exegesis 2 Corinthians 5 | N. T. Wright

Holiness and Homemaking: The Christian Doctrine of Creation Performed | Steven Bouma-Prediger

Animism Reconsidered: Coming Home in a More-Than-Human World | Rodney Clapp

Home Is Where the Wild Rice Is | Sylvia C. Keesmaat

Afterword | Martyn Joseph

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