Feast yourself on this!
Posted by Peter on January 25, 2012 Categories: Adults
The Renewed Pastor - writings in honour of Philip Hacking
A festschrift (literally a “feast of writing”) is a book honoring a respected person and presented during his or her lifetime. Recent years have seen these presented to John Piper, Dick Lucas and Don Carson and others.
Could a festschrift contribute to the dilemma of the “celebrity pastor”? That’s a real danger, but in this case, the truth is that the focus is firmly centred on the gospel. These writings are not about Philip but about the role of the pastor that he so valued and to which he gave himself unstintingly.
However, the purpose of this review is not to contribute to the festschrift but to encourage you to read these essays. Personally, this is a form of writing I really enjoy. Too many books have a good idea at heart but run out of steam well before the last page. However, the contributors here use their skill and knowledge to concisely and clearly address “all the major aspects of pastoral ministry”.
Each of the contributors knows Philip personally and wisely use the various contexts of his ministry to introduce their subject. There are 12 essays in total, preceded by a four-page foreword by Hugh Palmer that sets the scene well.
This book might well be “a major resource for all pastors” but I think it is far more valuable than that. This is a book for all of us. Here we have an insight into the role and ministry of the pastor that will help us, not just as those who are “pastored”, but also as those who must pastor “one another”.
It is not just pastors who need to learn valuable lessons on renewal, prayer, worship and the church. We can all learn from this helpful book so that we might be hearers of the word, doers of the word and messengers of the word, “a people that are God’s very own, eager to do what is good”.
The book is available from the church bookstall for £8.