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The Re-Enchantment of Morality: Wisdom for a Troubled World

Author: Richard Harries
Published By: SPCK (London)
Pages: 182
Price: £10.99
ISBN: 978 0 281 05947

Reviewed by Luke Penkett.

Richard Harries’ latest book is superb. In it, the former Bishop of Oxford, now a life peer, examines decision making - in public as well as private spheres - in our lives. He is constantly aware that all decisions have a moral basis and that morality itself finds its origin and inspiration in God. He is critical of unthinking obedience that blinds our sight and argues in favour of a deeper understanding of Jesus’ radical life and teaching, which enables far greater maturity.

Its central chapters focus on the four main human pursuits: sex, money, power and fame. These and the eight other chapters do not fudge issues arising from these drives, but enable the reader to live compassionately and faithfully with these dilemmas.

Lord Harries, an honorary professor of theology at King’s College, London, always writes with authority, yet engagingly, on ethical issues. However, this is a book not only for the student of ethics, but for all who are prepared to be open to the Holy Spirit and to use their brains as well as their hearts. The Re-Enchantment of Morality is to be warmly recommended, not only for Christian readers, but, perhaps above all, for all who have lost their faith in a church that can be at times static, judgemental and ignorant.

Luke Penkett

Monk and Priest working with L'Arche Community

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You are reading Issue 42 of Ministry Today, published in March 2008.

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