Books in Brief

Published February 1, 2001

Saint Saul

A Skeleton Key to the Historical Jesus

Donald Harman Akenson

346 pages, hardcover, $32.95

McGill – Queen’s University Press

0773520 9025

The author says that Paul’s famous letters (epistles) with their six biographical references to Jesus may give the earliest insights into the historical Jesus. He also suggests that they may be more accurate than those offered in the four Gospels, which were written much later. This elegantly written book blends courage, candour, joy, and humour with a high standard of scholarship.Paul

A Novel

Walter Wangerin Jr.

512 pages, hardcover, $33.95


0 310 21892 6 On the principle that different people experience the same person differently, the author has composed a narrative portrait of the apostle Paul as seen by nine biblical and non-biblical characters involved or acquainted with him. A good idea, but the writing at times seems piously forced; the picture of Paul is that of a cardboard character, and the insights sometimes appear shallow. A Journey into Christian Art

Helen De Borchgrave

223 pages, hardcover, $52.50

Fortress Press

0 8006 3240 0This book takes the reader on a visual and spiritual pilgrimage through 2,000 years, from catacomb wall paintings to works by still-living artists. It shows how a variety of artists tried to portray the Christian story in the settings of their own age. Alongside traditional works are lesser-known ones such as John Singer Sargent’s “Gassed” depicting blinded soldiers in the First World War. The text traces the history of Christian art and also explores the spirituality of the artists. The Episcopalian’s Guide to England, 2000/2001

James M. Rosenthal

46 pages, paper

Fortress Press

0 8006 3240 0Though written for U.S. Anglicans, this little booklet would be just as useful to the Canadian visitor to England. It is a light-hearted pilgrim’s guide to the Church of England and the country itself – differences, similarities, and above all, peculiarities. In addition to several listings of places to visit and things to do, there is a section on how to deal with officious vergers – along with advice to “beware one well-known abbey.”


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