“Book of the Year 2018” from Academy of Parish Clergy
ST. LOUIS, March 7, 2019
Two anti-racism books by Carolyn B. Helsel -- Anxious to Talk About It: Helping White Christians Talk Faithfully about Racism and Preaching About Racism: A Guide for Faith Leaders – share the “Book of the Year 2018” award from the Academy of Parish Clergy.
Helsel, a homiletics professor at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary and a pastor in the Presbyterian Church USA, wrote Anxious to Talk About It after noting one of the main reasons people avoid talking about racism is an often debilitating anxiety about engaging the topic and accidentally causing more harm than good.
“There’s not a one-size-fits-all approach to working against racism,” Carolyn Helsel noted. “In order to change hearts and social structures, we have to be willing to listen, and we ourselves have to be brave in our speech. Anxious to Talk About It has helped a lot of churches listen, and Preaching about Racism gives faith leaders tools to speak courageously.”
APC’s recognition is given to the book—in this case, books—published in the prior year the committee believes best speaks to the needs and interests of parish clergy.
A third book, which trains adults to navigate conversations with children, youth, and young adults about human differences so they can raise up individuals committed to respectful civic engagement, will be co-written with Yvette Joy Harris Smith and is slated for a 2020 release.
“The past few years have made it painfully clear America still has deep-seated racism to eradicate,” said Chalice Press publisher Brad Lyons, “and Carolyn’s books provide proven methods to start the process in your congregation or other group. We are grateful to partner with Carolyn and so many others on these important, life-changing works.”
Anxious to Talk about It and Preaching about Racism are among several recent Chalice Press publications focusing on anti-racism to be recognized by prestigious faith-based organizations in the past few years:
- Better: Waking Up to Who We Could Be by Melvin Bray was included in the Academy of Parish Clergy’s Top Ten Books for Parish Ministry 2017.
- Nobody Cries When We Die: God, Community, and Surviving to Adulthood by Patrick B. Reyes received the Hispanic Theological Initiative’s 2019 Book of the Year award.
- Stakes Is High: Race, Faith, and Hope in America by Michael W. Waters was named the 2018 Wilbur Award Winner by the Religion Communicators Council
The Academy of Parish Clergy is an international organization of those currently or formerly serving in a professional role of leadership in spiritual communities of all sizes and in a variety of settings. APC members span faith traditions and the various styles of ministry.
CBP/Chalice Press publishes resources inviting all people into deeper relationship with God, equipping them as disciples of Jesus Christ, and sending them into ministries as the Holy Spirit calls them. Based in St. Louis, Missouri, Chalice Press is the publishing arm of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), with a broader ecumenical outreach to the wider church.