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Sacred Friendships - Celebrating the Legacy of Women Heroes of the Faith Paperback – September 11, 2009

5.0 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Dr. Robert W. Kellemen is chairman of the Master of Arts in Christian Counseling and Discipleship Department at Capital Bible Seminary in Lanham, MD. He also works as a consultant for the 50,000-member American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC's). He is the Director of the AACC's Religious Leaders' Division and also the AACC's Theology and Pastoral Counseling Director.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: BMH Books; 1st edition (September 11, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0884692647
  • ISBN-13: 978-0884692645
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,049,866 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By L. Wiggins VINE VOICE on October 13, 2009
Format: Paperback
In the writings of early church history, women's voices have gone underrepresented. This realization began Dr. Robert Kellemen's desire for writing Sacred Friendships. In addition to his work in biblical counseling, his personal passion is to empower "those who have been robbed of their voice." Like the women they profile in their book, co-author Susan Ellis' passion lies in ministering to women and seeing God work in their lives. Kellemen and Ellis combined their passions in order to write the stories of more than fifty remarkable Christian women who offered care and direction for the souls of men and women throughout church history.

According to Kellemen and Ellis, "experts who examine the history of spiritual care have consistently identified" two pillars of christian counseling as soul care (helping people in their suffering) and spiritual direction (helping people fight sin and develop intimacy with Christ). Soul care involves sustaining and healing, while spiritual direction includes reconciling and guiding. Kellemen and Ellis have organized the stories of these women around these two pillars and four areas of Christian counseling. They were careful to study and discern many manuscripts, journals, and correspondence in order to accurately uncover each woman's unique way of practicing soul care and spiritual direction. The authors ask very specific questions of each woman's life and her relationships in an effort to understand the natures of each one's manner of care giving. Christian women have been providing counseling and wisdom in these four areas for centuries.
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Format: Paperback
The early Christians lived in a society that produced more questions than answers, more persecution than peace, and more discouragement then encouragement. As a result they were in desperate need of godly input. Mindful of this the author of Hebrews provided them with strong counsel and also reminded them of the many inspirational examples who had gone on before them. Pointing them to a "great cloud of witnesses" whose lives testified to "the validity and veracity of faith" he made it possible for them to both see and hear these great heroes of the faith cheering them on in unison as they ran their "race of faith" despite overwhelming exhaustion and hurdles of unbelievable proportions.

Times have changed yet much remains the same. The need for spiritual inspiration, encouragement, and empowerment is as real now as it was then. But where is our "great cloud of witnesses?" In our search to find "relevant" solutions to all of life's ills we have had a tendency to allow "today's crying needs to drown out yesterday's relevant answers." Why? Because in our striving for relevance we have neglected the wisdom it is possible to glean from the many historical voices of the church. These voices of the past are deep wells from which we could quench our thirst for spiritual wisdom--if only we could hear them.

Fortunately authors Robert Kellemen and Susan Ellis, in their book "Sacred Friendships: Celebrating the Legacy of Women Heroes of the Faith" have taken a walk down the ancient paths in search of "voices from the past.
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Format: Paperback
This book is a "must read" for Christian women.

I laughed, I cried...I was humbled.

In a time when women's ministry is often synonymous with brunch and chocolate, we can all learn from the women in Sacred Friendships.

The wisdom, boldness, perseverance, love, and sacrifice displayed by these female heroes will make you want to put down that latte and get to work in the body of Christ.

This historical narrative presents the stories over 50 women and covers 2000 years of church history. The authors allow these women to shine their own light through their letters, diaries, and other writings. We also hear the words of those who were influenced by their faith.

These women teach us to balance life and doctrine, humble care and bold courage, content and character. They speak the truth in love. They teach, counsel, and encourage others through their words and through their actions.

The list of heroes includes mothers and sisters of the saints. It includes martyrs and deaconesses, wives of famous pastors, and women who quietly instructed and discipled followers in their rural homes. You will hear from women who boldly spoke out against and debated male leaders during the Great Western Schism, the Reformation, and the road to Emancipation. There are stories of those who endured slavery and those who fought against slavery. The book ends in a Nazi prison camp, where the faith of one woman encouraged and influenced those around her.

Diversity among the women in Sacred Friendships affirms that all women can serve in God's kingdom. These women were married, single, and widowed. They included women of high position and political influence, peasants, prisoners, and slaves. Some were mothers and some never had children. All of them lived authentic lives of faith.

I would definitley recommend this book.
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