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How the Body of Christ Talks


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Table of Contents


Introduction: We Are Conversational Bodies
1. Orienting Ourselves for the Journey: Theological Roots of Conversation
Part 1: Setting Out on the Journey
2. Learning the Dynamics of Conversation
3. What Will We Talk About?
4. The Healing Potential of Conversational Methods
Part 2: A Spirituality for the Journey
5. Conversation as a Prayerful Way of Being
6. Abiding in the Messiness of Life
7. Preparing Our Whole Selves for Conversation
Part 3: Sustaining the Journey
8. Cultivating a Sense of Mission and Identity
9. Sustaining Conversation through Conflict
10. Enmeshing Ourselves in the Dance of Community
Conclusion: Conversational Bodies Bearing Witness
Appendix A: Sample Conversational Ground Rules
Appendix B: Additional Resources on Conversational Methods
Appendix C: Finding Common Ground in Conversations on Sexuality

About the Author

C. Christopher Smith (MA, Indiana University) is a writer, community developer, and founding editor of The Englewood Review of Books. He is coauthor of the award-winning book Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus and the author of Reading for the Common Good: How Books Help Our Churches and Neighborhoods Flourish. His work has appeared in the Washington Post, USA Today, the Indianapolis Star, HuffPost, Christianity Today, the Christian Century, Relevant, and Sojourners. Smith lives on the urban Near Eastside of Indianapolis, Indiana, where he is a longtime member of Englewood Christian Church, a congregation that has been learning to talk together for over two decades.

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