Seminary faculty produce book: Out of the Strange Silence

On October 29, MB Biblical Seminary will release the book Out of the Strange Silence: The Challenge of Being Christian in the 21st Century. The 220-page book, published by Kindred Productions, features chapters by twelve of the Seminary's faculty members representing its three campuses in Fresno, California, Langley, British Columbia, and Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Each chapter of the book focuses on a particular challenge faced by Christians and the Church today. The chapters are divided into four sections: Reading Scripture Anew, Living the Christian Life, Church Leadership in a New Era, and The Church's Place in the World.

The title of the book arose from the writings of naturalist John Muir. In 1872 Muir stood near the center of an earthquake, felt the earth move under him, and wondered what chaos would follow. He wrote, "Suddenly, out of the strange silence and strange motion there came a tremendous roar. The Eagle Rock on the south wall, about a half a mile up the Valley, gave way and I saw it falling in thousands of ... great boulders." Following the destruction, Muir reflected on the cataclysm not as a horrible end point, but as a re-ordering of nature, and wrote that, "the streams began to sing new songs."

"As the Seminary enters its fiftieth year, this book celebrates a legacy of theological education and spiritual formation," says Brad Thiessen, the book's editor and Public Relations director for the Seminary. "The hope of the contributors is that as we feel the earth shake beneath our feet, await the oncoming landslide, or survey the re-ordering of the valley floor, we will experience not destruction and chaos but a re-ordering of nature and that we, like Muir, will hear the streams sing new songs."

Out of the Strange Silence: The Challenge of Being Christian in the 21st Century will be premiered at MB Biblical Seminary's fiftieth anniversary celebration in Fresno, California on October 29th. Copies will be given to all alumni for whom the Seminary has contact information, and to Mennonite Brethren pastors and church libraries.

The book will be available for purchase October 29th through Kindred Productions at or by calling 1-800-545-7322; and through

Posted: September 14, 2005