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The Preaching Life

4.33 of 5 stars 4.33  ·  rating details  ·  487 ratings  ·  21 reviews
In her bestselling preaching autobiography Barbara Brown Taylor writes of how she came to be a preacher of the gospel as a priest in the Episcopal Church. In this warm and poignant collection, Barbara Brown Taylor’s humor and wisdom delve into the meaning of Christian symbols and history—both her own, growing up in the Mid-West and Georgia, and the Church’s, from its earli ...more
Paperback, 174 pages
Published January 25th 1993 by Cowley Publications (first published January 1st 1993)
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Alan  Marr
The only thing that stopped me from giving this a 5 was the second half of the book. The sermons were good but i wanted more of the other stuff. I loved the chapters on "Call", "Vocation" and "Imagination". Thanks Carolyn for the recommendation.
If there’s one preacher I adore, it’s BBT. I started reading her books in the mid ‘90s, but somehow missed this one until now. It has the feel of someone rising to the challenges of middle age: too wise to be written by a 20-something, but not world-weary enough to come from the pen of a 60-something. The book is roughly divided into two halves: part one a collection of essays, and part two a series of sermons. The opening essay, entitled “A Church in Ruins,” expresses the dilemma of living in a ...more
Andrew Philip
A superb book by a wise and fine preacher and writer. The first half, in which she reflects on the call to ministry and the priesthood of all believers, is tremendous and very helpful. I was disappointed when it finished! The second half, which consists of 13 sermons, is also excellent and frequently thought-provoking.

The only reason I gave the book four stars instead of five was that I wanted more of the first half. Perhaps that's churlish of me, particularly given the old adage, "always leave
Julie Golding Page
This is an excellent book by an eminent American Episcopal (Anglican) priest who also happens to be a woman.

The first part of the book is one of the clearest and most engaging explanations I've ever read on the topic of what it means to be called by God. The second part contains a number of excellent sermons, which are good for personal reading and also for layreaders or priests to read as the Sunday sermon in church.

Barbara Brown Taylor's preaching style is more like storytelling and less like
I cannot say enough about this book. Taylor writes with such eloquence, it makes me happy to be in the company of her as a female preacher. Inspiring and well worth the read for all preachers.
Cindy Hindman
contains lost of good stuff and such a perspective about things that make you think
Mark Fredericksen
Barbara Brown Taylor is an Anglican who speaks strongly to my own Anglican heart. She makes plain so much of the liturgy, sacraments, and preaching aspects of worship that they all suddenly make so much sense. Worship in the Anglican tradition already resonated with my soul, now it also resonates in my head. The sermons she includes in the second half are succinct, powerful, and illustrate precisely all that she presents theoretically and theologically in the first half. A great manual for under ...more
Cara Meredith
Lovely, as per the BBT usual. If you're a speaker or preacher, read this. If you're a fan of her writing, especially the early, more jesus-pointed stuff, read this. And in the second half, you'll feel like you're sitting front and center on that hard wooden pew, listening to the ebb and flow of her stories.
Taylor is such a wonderful writer and it was interesting to read one of her earlier works. While not as polished as her more recent Leaving Church memoir, it still had many of the themes that she often explores...hearing God's call--in its many guises--work as vocation, the importance and meaning of worship and preaching--she gives me much to ponder. I will read anything of hers...she's wonderful
Very good. I liked the first half the best. Learning about what lead her into the priesthood, how the world changed/is changing, and what shaped her way of thinking. The second half was also good, but wish the chapters were longer. I understand they are meant as sermons, and sermons are supposed to be short, but I still wished for more. :)
Brenda Funk
A splendid writer, a great theologian -- loved this book, as I have her others. Thanks.
Katherine Willis Pershey
I can't believe I didn't read this book until now.

It is marvelous. Wonderfully written, deeply moving. I would recommend it to preachers, of course, but also to anyone who loves excellent writing and keep observations of the world.

This collection of sermons reads like a great narrative and provides more than "how to" on preaching. If you are looking for a great read and a devotional book. THis is for you.
B.B. Taylor writing and preaching is a craft she takes seriousy. She is wonderfully insightful, funny and gracefully speaks the truth
This is an awesome book for anyone as they seek through their own journey in life. It is an easy read as well.
Great sermons. Should be required reading for preachers or wanna be preachers.
Demetrius Rogers
Too abstract for my taste. Only made it more than half way through.
A classic for all preachers and theological thinkers.
Anything by Taylor i worth the read
An incredible writer and preacher
Laura Inscoe
I love everything she writes.
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  • The Homiletical Plot: The Sermon as Narrative Art Form
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  • Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion
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Barbara Brown Taylor’s last book, An Altar in the World, was a New York Times bestseller that received the Silver Nautilus Award in 2012. Her first memoir, Leaving Church, received an Author of the Year award from the Georgia Writers Association and won the Theologos Award for best general interest book of 2006. Taylor spent fifteen years in parish ministry before becoming the Butman Professor of ...more
More about Barbara Brown Taylor...
An Altar in the World: A Geography of Faith Leaving Church: A Memoir of Faith Learning to Walk in the Dark When God Is Silent Home by Another Way

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