Registrar Maria Taylor introduces the One Month Book Club to faculty and staff

Aleah Cady, Staff Writer

At the suggestion of Registrar Maria Taylor, faculty and staff at Wingate University have been participating in the new “One-Month Book Club.”

The club meets twice a week, on Wednesdays at 1 p.m. in the Cornwell Room at the Ethel K. Smith Library and at noon Fridays in the McGee Center conference room.  It’s open to all faculty and staff.

Taylor suggested the idea for the book club to the vice provost, Nancy Randall, after reading the 2017 Christian literature book, “A Bigger Table: Building Messy, Authentic, and Hopeful Spiritual Community,” written by North Carolina pastor, John Pavlovitz.

Photo Credit: Pavlovitz site

The book, which focuses on inclusivity and diversity in the church as well as other settings, inspired Maria, and she wanted to share John’s message with others. “The book teaches a very agenda-free, inclusive, authentic method of inclusivity.” Maria says. “He speaks about radical hospitality, and making people of all backgrounds feel at home.”

According to the summary on Google Books, Pastor John Pavlovitz of North Raleigh Community Church tackles topics “the Christian community has been earnestly wrestling with… LGBT inclusion, gender equality, racial tensions, and global concerns.”

The book has received mixed reviews, due to its progressive, and arguably controversial style. As a pastor of over 20 years, John has been devoted to social justice, and breaking down “walls” between people of different faiths, religions, ethnicities, races, sexual orientations, genders, etc. On his website, he describes himself as “a 20-year ministry veteran trying to figure out how to love people well and to live-out the red letters of Jesus.”

“I thought this would be a great book to open up discussion, and talk with faculty and staff about something other than work. Our student body is very diverse, so I feel that as faculty, it’s important to have open discussions about the differences in students, and ourselves.” Maria said.

She is open to students being a part of the club in the future, and encourages them to read Pavlovitz’ book as well. She is very interested in the idea of  the club continuing next year.

On February 21st, Pastor Pavlovitz will be on campus. He will be eating lunch with members of The One-Month Book Club and discussing the book. That evening at 7 p.m., he will be the speaker for a faith lyceum in the McGee Theater, which is open to faculty, staff, and students.

The required attire for attendance is business casual. He will speak about his book, and his beliefs on “building a bigger table.” All are welcome to attend, and hear John’s message.

A Bigger Table is available for purchase from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, Target, and his personal website. He has a new book being released this year.

Edited by: Brea Childs

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