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Souls in the Hands of a Tender God: Stories of the Search for Home and Healing on the Streets [Hardcover]

By Craig Rennebohm (Author)
Our Price $ 20.36  
Retail Value $ 23.95  
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Item Number 100166  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   224
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.05" Width: 6.3" Height: 0.91"
Weight:   1.02 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   May 31, 2008
Publisher   Beacon Press
ISBN  0807000426  
EAN  9780807000427  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Offers a minister's stories about his work with homeless people on the streets of Seattle who are suffering from mental illness and who are in desparate need of psychiatric, psychological, and spiritual support.

Publishers Description
Since 1987, Craig Rennebohm has ministered to people on the streets of Seattle who are homeless and struggling with mental illness. In Souls in the Hands of a Tender God, he tells the evocative stories of persons who desperately need psychiatric, psychological, and spiritual support-like Mary, who surrounds herself with huge trash bags for protection from a threatening world; Jerry, whose fits of rage get him barred from every shelter and meal program in Seattle; and others, abandoned and marginalized by their community, who need care and treatment to find their way back to a life of stability and meaning. As Rennebohm reaches out to each one, their stories become parables that explore mental illness and the spiritual heart of care and recovery, helping us understand what it means to be human, on a pilgrimage together toward wholeness.

As these stories unfold, we encounter Rennebohm's powerful experiences with a God of kindness and compassion, drawn from his own life and the lives of those he has aided in their struggles with homelessness and with mental illness. Souls in the Hands of a Tender God offers a clear understanding of Spirit, faith, soul, and religion that will prove invaluable to individual conversations and to dialogue among congregations about how we can best serve "the least among us."

Souls in the Hands of a Tender God follows the path of healing and the way of companionship to build communities of caring that welcome and include our most fragile and troubled neighbors. With gentleness and grace, solid knowledge and wisdom, Rennebohm lays down the foundations of healing communities in which all may have a home, safely rest, and be well.
Rarely has the lived experience of mental illness been expressed with such clarity and compassion. In deft, concise accounts of his relationships with people who endure mental illnesses and homelessness, Craig Rennebohm shares striking insights into their perceptions and realities. His outreach embodies a spirituality that complements and honors other approaches to homelessness and mental illness, but stands on its own as a great testament of faith. Souls in the Hands of a Tender God is an engrossing read for anyone who seeks to comprehend the needs of our brothers and sisters on the streets.—John N. Lozier, executive director, National Health Care for the Homeless Council

Here is a powerful testimonial to the work of community in healing the broken fragments of our lives. Rennebohm is focused, clear, mindful and exceedingly human in relating the medical to the religious in the care of souls."—Bishop Cabell Tennis

"A deeply affecting mosaic of stories, Souls in the Hands of a Tender God unveils the tragedy of homelessness, mental illness, and estrangement, and reveals the power of hospitality and accompaniment in the daunting journey toward home, healing, and belonging. You're unlikely to find a better portrayal of what it means to truly love your neighbor as yourself."—Ken Kraybill, training specialist, National Health Care for the Homeless Council

"Like Jesus, Rennebohm uses the stories of 'the least of these' to break the silence about mental illness. He models a ministry of presence through companionship and embraces relationship to heal the soul and reveal God's presence in the midst of our personal darkness."—Rev. Susan Gregg-Schroeder, United Methodist minister and coordinator of mental health ministries, author of In the Shadow of God's Wings: Grace in the Midst of Depression

"This beautifully written book is a must read for those personally affected by mental illness. It is of even greater value for those who are not."—Gunnar Christiansen, M.D., founder, FaithNet NAMI

"This book was lived before it was written. Craig Rennebohm has gone to people and places that many Americans would prefer not to notice. In doing so, he has discovered that the light does yet shine in the darkness. Now he brings back stories of the light to show us all the way."—Anthony B. Robinson, author of Transforming Congregational Culture and Common Grace and United Church of Christ Pastor

"This moving and personal story will be of great value to anyone working with people who struggle with mental illness. Rennebohm brings to life the compassion, grace, and justice in this spiritual approach, but also emphasizes the need to recognize the whole person—their social, psychological, and biological facets—as well as the stark reality of mental illness."—David H. Avery, M.D., professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Washington School of Medicine

"A masterpiece of storytelling that has tremendous potential to continue the transformation of our churches and society into a safety net of unbroken relationships."—Reverend Patrick Howell, S.J., vice president for mission and ministry, Seattle University, and author of Reducing the Storm to a Whisper: The Story of a Breakdown

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More About Craig Rennebohm

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Craig Rennebohm has worked for twenty years on the streets of Seattle, WA, supporting homeless individuals struggling with mental illness on the journey through the community mental health system to stability in the community. He has worked extensively with families, served as chaplain on the inpatient mental health units at Harborview Medical Center and has worked in partnership with local congregations to develop mental health ministries that include education, spiritual care and support groups, services of healing and encouragement, shelter, drop-in programs and supported housing. He has developed a basic "Companionship Training," which equips laity for ministries of presence and service, and "Relational Outreach," a resource and training for medical, mental health, human service and chemical dependency staff. Craig graduated from Carleton College, the Chicago Theological Seminary and the Pacific School of Religion where he earned a Doctor of Ministry degree specializing in pastoral care. Craig was ordained in Lowell, MA where he served in a community ministry position which included serving as a juvenile court chaplain, campus minister and as a staff member of the Lowell Pastoral Counseling Center. As pastor of Pilgrim Church in Seattle for 11 years he helped create a lively diverse congregation which embodied the message, "All are Welcome, Come as You Are." Craig is a United Church of Christ minister whose greatest delight is his family, Barb, Kelsey, Sam and Max.
David W. Paul is a Seattle-based writer and editorial consultant. He is a former political scientist who taught at Princeton and the University of Washington. He has authored or co-authored six books and many articles ranging from politics and history to film criticism, the Internet, and poetry translations. As a technical writer and editor, he worked on contract with Microsoft, Adobe, Boeing, and other companies in the Puget Sound area. His recognitions include awards from the Pacific Northwest Writers Association and the Seattle Arts Commission. He has been a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow, a Fulbright-Hays Fellow, and a scholar-in-residence for the Washington Commission for the Humanities and the Washington State Arts Commission.

Craig Rennebohm was born in 1945.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Stories which give hope to our own vulnerability  May 13, 2008
Chapllain Rennebohm is first of all a great story teller. Through these stories and his reflections we come to know and care for persons who experience a mental illness. In Craig's patience with those whom he meets on the street, we learn the value of patience in our lives also. As he reports the working of the Spirit, we can find the Spirit at work in our lives as well. An engaging and inspiring account.

Rev. Bob Dell
Pathways to Promise - Ministry & Mental Illness

Write your own review about Souls in the Hands of a Tender God: Stories of the Search for Home and Healing on the Streets

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