A decade ago, Walter Brueggemann called the church to journey together for the good of our community through neighbourliness, covenanting, and reconstruction. He distilled this challenge to its most basic issues: Where is the church going? What is its role in contemporary society? What lessons does it have to offer a world enmeshed in turbulent times?
Published originally in 2010, Journey to the Common Good spoke to an era defined in large part by America’s efforts to rebuild from an age of terror as it navigated its way through an economic collapse. Today, the dual crises of the coronavirus and the disease of racial injustice present daunting new challenges for the church as it seeks the good of its neighbours. In a new introduction to this updated edition, Brueggemann links the wilderness tradition of Exodus to these current crises, as a framework to help the church navigate this time of risk and vulnerability and to pursue a genuine social alternative to the governance of Pharaoh. The answer to the question of the church’s role in society is the same answer God gave to the Israelites thousands of years ago: love your neighbour and work for the common good.
Walter Brueggemann has an uncanny ability to take the sprawling, sometimes unwieldy Scriptures and make them intimate and approachable. He allows us to enter these ancient stories, not from some lofty theoretical distance, but from the ground level where we can experience them in a deeply human way. Journey to the Common Good is a prescient and necessary reminder of the need for a faith that meets the wounds of the world. —John Pavlovitz, author of A Bigger Table: Building Messy, Authentic, and Hopeful Spiritual Community