cover87517-mediumFear of the Other: No Fear in Love, William H. Willimon, Abingdon Press, 2016.

True to form, Bishop Willimon approaches theological themes in a no-nonsense and gutsy matter. This little book (less than 100 pages) is the Bishop’s response to the rhetoric of Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. “If not for them,” Willimon writes, “I would not have been asked to write this book.”

Willimon shows no fear in addressing current social topics. He covers it all. The desire for a bigger wall across the border to keep out Hispanics. The call to keep Muslims out of the country. The exclusion of LGBT individuals in the life of the church. And, he even takes on Jerry Falwell, Jr.

All of this very relevant issues is perhaps one reason why this little book is so little. It is a wonder that this book was written, edited, and published in the short amount of time that it must have been done in. If you are an avid reader of Bishop Willimon, you may have read a few of these stories, or thoughts, before. Even, so, this little book is worth your time.

Willimon has a pretty straight forward argument. Jesus was the Other, as such we should welcome the Other in our time now as we welcome Jesus. Instead of standing in fear of the Other, Willimon encourages the Church to embrace the Other. “Let’s be honest,” he writes, “that our faith requires us to go toward the Other without regard for whether or not the Other steps toward us.”

“Therefore, go,” Bishop Willimon seems to be saying, “and create places of welcome.”

You can purchase a copy of the book by clicking on the image below:

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a digital review copy.