Whole: A Call to Unity in Our Fragmented World
In her hope-filled new book, Sharon Watkins, the General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and moderator-elect of the National Council of Churches, shares her vision of how the good news of Jesus calls American Christians to unite around justice, mercy, and openness in the 21st century.
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From 2005-2017, Rev. Dr. Sharon E. Watkins served as General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada. The first female to lead a mainline denomination in North America, she was featured as one of the "50 Powerful Women Religious Leaders" by the Huffington Post.
"Sharon Watkins is one of America's great reconcilers. In my time in the White House, I saw firsthand how Sharon's witness for Christ in the wider world knit both her own denomination and the country closer together, and helped us focus on the issues that matter most. Now, with Whole, we have a powerful blueprint for unity that each of us can apply in our own areas of influence. This book is a gift; it will change organizations, and lives."
—Joshua DuBois, bestselling author of The President's Devotional, and former head of the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships
"There are leaders within the church that everyone should be listening to and engaging. Sharon Watkins —who leads the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) —is always near the top of my list. Her deep passion for helping Christians live out their faith in ways large and small, the great wisdom she offers from decades of ministry, and the powerful vision she paints of what it means to be one of Christ's disciples in the kind of world we live in —whether or not you belong to her denomination —makes this book a must read. Watkins brings people together, articulates the direction we need, and is one of the best voices we have for bringing faith into public life."
—Jim Wallis, President and Founder, Sojourners
“Come and feast at the banquet prepared for you from the beginning of the world. ‘You’ means everyone, no exceptions. Turn in here and join the feast, and bring your neighbor with you. Sharon Watkins has prepared a verbal banquet — come and taste —and a tender invitation to come and feast.”
—The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop and Primate, The Episcopal Church
“Here is a powerful expression of how Christians express God’s unconditional love to bring wholeness to God’s world, not only in good times but in times of disaster, famine, political oppression, and mortal danger. Disciples will especially welcome this account of their own response to Jesus’ call, but all readers will be inspired by the way Watkins puts sinewy flesh on an old adage: ‘God did not tell the world to go to church, but God did tell the church to go into the world!’”
—Jim Winkler, general secretary and president, National Council of Churches
“In this engaging primer on the Christian life, Sharon Watkins shares stories that reveal the myriad ways we encounter God in our lives. She shows how discipleship, solidarity and radical love are the new watchwords not just for ecumenism but for all authentic Christian witness today.”
—Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, General Secretary, World Council of Churches
“From these stories, I found myself being invited to reflect upon my own experiences around the Table, being welcomed, and finding wholeness and unity. The power of this book is not so much in its teaching, but in its invitation to share our stories of faith!” — Robert K. Welsh, President, Council on Christian Unity
“Sharon Watkins weaves together, in continual vignettes, stories about Jesus, stories about congregations stretching from Enid, Oklahoma to the Congo, and stories about those who have given hope to others by trying to be faithful disciples. Its poignant examples and insightful wisdom will refresh you, just as Sharon Watkins’ ministry continues to do for so many.”
— Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, General Secretary Emeritus, Reformed Church in America