Item description for Community and Growth by Jean Vanier & Ann Shearer...
Overview Contemporary society is the product of the disintegration of more or less natural or familial groupings. People are afraid, uncertain and shut themselves away. But they need companions, friends with whom they can share their lives, their visions and their ideals; in short, they need community.
Publishers Description If you've ever thought about community, whether as a lifestyle or simply as an expression of deeper fellowship with others, this book is essential reading. In the fifteen years since it first appeared in English, it has become "the" classic text on the subject -- read, dog-eared, borrowed, and discussed.
Vanier is not a rosy idealist. That is because his writing is based not on theories, but on a wealth of wisdom gleaned over many years living in community, experiencing difficult days and joyous celebrations, times of struggle and hard-won success, moments of doubt and inspiration. He acknowledges the inevitable little frustrations of a life lived with and for others, but he also helps the reader see that without struggle there is no true growth.
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Studio: Paulist Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1" Width: 5.5" Height: 8.25" Weight: 0.85 lbs.
Release Date Dec 1, 1999
Publisher Paulist Press
ISBN 0809131358 ISBN13 9780809131358
Availability 0 units.
More About Jean Vanier & Ann Shearer
Jean Vanier is the founder of L'Arche, an international network of communities for people with developmental disabilities. He lives in Trosly-Breuil, France. Jonathan Boulet-Groulx lives in Montreal.
Jean Vanier currently resides in Trosly-Breuil. Jean Vanier was born in 1928.
Reviews - What do customers think about Community and Growth?
Community Life Nov 10, 2006
This book helps me to understand more how to build up the community life. This is an excellent book for any community learning to accept and live together as a good community with love.
I can't put it in a short phrase... May 2, 2006
I read this book about 15 years ago and am going through it again now. It could use some editing, in my opinion. He goes over certain topics again and again.
But still 5 stars! It deals with the missing important link in social services - love and attachment! How to provide family or something family like to people who are broken.
Also, another theme is valuing people over success - that caring for and living life beside the weakest of us is "where it is at." Turning culture on it's head in a way.
Start by being with the broken, living in the same house as the broken. And then finally realizing you are also one of the broken. And that it is hard, but GREAT!
Or something like that. Vanier can tell the story much better than I can. I have heard him speak on three or four occasions and met him twice. He seems even more genuine and loving than his book is. One time he took a "sabatical" from his work leading the L'Arche Federation and lived in a house with one of the most challenging people in his community. Sabatical?
Anyway, having been around L'Arche now for 11 years and having seen not only the book and the man but some of the communities his vision resulted in - I think this book is very worth reading. Kind of a thick book - but not hard to read.
Exhortative and Realistic Look at Community Life Jul 17, 2002
The profound wisdom in this book is born out of a lifetime of growth in the context of Christian community with the poor that Jean Vanier has been immersed in for almost 40 years. This book is not only interested in giving structural and personal tips for creating a healthy and God-centered community; it actually is like Jean Vanier's manifesto in terms of his paradigm of why community life is important and how God teaches special and beautiful things in the context of communities. He is such an effective writer. He is able to exhort the reader to want to pursue community life, but without being overly idealistic and ignoring the many complex difficulties that arise. Jean exhorts the reader to pursue community life not because it will be easy and always meet all our needs, but because it brings tremendous growth and because God's love and calling are bigger than the problems that come up in community. This is the best book I have ever read on community, and I will likely read it again.
Excellent Christian Community Text Jun 1, 2002
Vanier takes an in-depth look at community life and living through his experiences with the L'Arche community in France.
This Biblically-based book offers excellent insights, tips, rules and suggestions for how to build a healthy community.
The book is a wonderful primer for anyone considering the possibility of living in Christian community.
A Rich Resource for the Christian Community May 10, 2000
Jean Vanier's Community and Growth sheds such light on the topic of community. The richness flows from years of keen observation, experience, reflection, and prayer on this issue. Vanier has lived and breathed community, not just studied it. Humility and grace flow from each page. Vanier's servant leadership in the l'Arche communities is a wonderful living witness to the world of what Christian love looks like fleshed out. A real strength in this book is Vanier's insight into human nature. Even as Christians we are a mixture of light and darkness. But God's grace shines through when we accept others as they are. Yet at the same time, the community beckons each individual member to grow more Christlike. This book teaches us how to live in any kind of community: the home, church, small group, or any gathering. Vanier writes that a true community "provides a sense of belonging and an orientation of life to a common goal and common witness" (p.10). With such clarity and perception Vanier paints a vivid picture of community for us: the importance of unity, forgiveness, mission, selflessness, communication, celebration, humility, and respect for authority. Community and Growth helps us along the journey of "life together." There are some books that are to be read once. And there are others to be read and reread. This book invites us to return to it over and over--like an old friend.