Book Launch with Peter Dominy

Local author Peter Dominy was in college recently to launch his new book, Decoding Mammon. Thirty-two people enjoyed coffee and shortbread, the Bishop of Salisbury, Nicholas Holtam, give a very interesting introduction, and then the author gave a fascinating talk on money. There was a lot of lively discussion from the audience.

Decoding Mammon is an exposition of the negative assessment of money implied in Jesus’ statement, “You cannot serve God and Mammon”. On the basis of the theology enshrined in the Old and New Testaments and in the long-term tradition of the church, it is claimed that problems associated with money do not arise simply from the way it is used, but from the nature of money itself.

Despite the fact that money has enabled great economic development, and in contrast with the general consensus of governments, economists, and many theologians that money is either a positive or neutral instrument, the book seeks to show that money is a deeply flawed instrument, created by fallen human beings, and fashioned over the years to suit the interests of those in power rather than the needs of people in general.

It is argued that money should only be allowed to operate within severe restrictions, and that any reformulation of the global economy as a result of the recent financial crisis needs to be based on this understanding.

“Reams have been published on the reasons for the 2008 crisis, asking all the questions except the ones that need to be asked: What is money? What has it become? Do we own it or does it own us? Decoding Mammon will take you into these questions, and the issues will look different as a result.”

Peter Selby, former Bishop of Worcester; author of Grace and Mortgage: Language of Faith and the Debt of the World

Bookshop Bestsellers November 2012

1. Encircling the Christian Year by Barbara Mosse (our Book of the Month for November)

2. Finding your Leadership Style by Keith Lamdin

3. Reflections for Daily Prayer 2012/2013

4. Waiting in Joyful Hope 2012/2013

5. The Lion’s World a Journey into the Heart of Narnia by Rowan Williams

6. Messy Christmas by Lucy Moore

7. Church Book and Desk Diary 2013

9. Room with a View  by Bishop Nicholas

10. Companions on the Bethlehem Road by Rachel Boulding

Book of the Month: December 2012

‘The Lion’s World – A Journey into the Heart of Narnia’ by Rowan Williams.

One of life’s great pleasures is to listen to someone talking enthusiastically about their passions; sharing their knowledge and expertise in a way which draws us in. Reading The Lion’s World is one of those moments, as this warm, wise book leads us gently through the wardrobe of our preconceptions into the spiritual and intellectual heart of Narnia and opens up fresh perspectives on Lewis’ thinking.

Rowan Williams sets the Narnia stories within the context of Lewis’ other writings; he is clear sighted about the occasional weaknesses of plot (how did Mrs Beaver make that marmalade roll?) or indications of personal prejudice; identifies a unifying vision and yet, as he says of Lewis, also “gives us the tools with which we can question even some of his own positions … one of the most serious compliments that could be paid to any thinker.”

In the Narnia books, Lewis was putting complex ideas about sin, redemption, death, incarnation, human uniqueness, grace, joy, creation, truth, trust, love and the wonderful, unpredictable, otherness of God in a form which was accessible to children. He certainly had a high opinion of children’s literature and of children’s ability to cope with difficult concepts, but it seems likely that this was just the best way for Lewis to tell this particular story and, however tempting it may be for the reader “inclined to ask tiresome questions” to focus on the theology, Williams never loses sight of the fact that the books “must stand or fall, finally, as stories.”

For Lucy, the test of a good story was that it seemed real: something which was not just read or heard but lived, and which contained truths which could be recognised in other contexts. Here, Rowan Williams is not only showing how Lewis brought the children to Narnia so that they might be able to recognise Aslan in their own world, he is encouraging us to open our imaginations, put aside our sense of self and take the risk of meeting him in ours.

The Rev’d Norma Fergusson
Assistant Curate, Rowde & Bromham

Published by SPCK, ‘The Lion’s World’ is normally priced at £8.99. Mention the website to order a copy at the special price of £7.99 and POST FREE from Sarum College Bookshop until December 31st 2012. (n.b. Orders received after Dec 21st will be supplied in January 2013). Cheques should be made payable to ‘Sarum College Bookshop’.

Unity: Contemporary Art Exhibition from Sarum Artists

The merging of two separate instances of unity, a magic number square and a colour palette, to form a third, as a metaphor for the successful unified activities of humans are just some of the inspired ideas from local arts group Sarum Artists‘ latest exhibition, entitled “unity”.

14 December 2012 to 18 January 2013 at Sarum College

The artwork that Sarum Artists have produced has tried to portray the many different aspects of unity, to help inspire the viewer to give thought to their understanding of it. Unity is creating a bond from the diverse, creating a solution from a wealth of ideas, creating oneness from many.

The artists try to show the positive and negative sides; the common goal; diversity; of being included and of being left on the outside. Through all walks of life people are coming together for one reason or another to create something greater than that which just one person or one group can create. Much of this was seen with the vast multitude of athletes, sports and the nations’ pride that were on display at the recent Olympic Games. It can be seen within our churches and places of worship as they join together to help their local communities and improve the lives of those in need. It can also be seen in the individual where history or background has formed an amazing person or item or where a combination of ideas has created something just as intriguing as the original idea.

Viewers can experience the wide range of talent of the members of Sarum Artists using as they do many different mediums to help portray their ideas, including watercolours, acrylics, wood engraving, textiles, mixed media and stone.

The exhibition is free and open daily from 14 December 2012 to 18 January 2013. Opening times are Monday to Saturday 9am to 5pm, Sundays 10am to 2pm.

Sarum Artists are a group of Salisbury Collage graduates in Fine Art, founded in 2006.  They exhibit locally and further afield as a group and individuals.

Sarum Artists  |  Art Exhibitions at Sarum College