The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Is This Book Based On Universialism?


Found this book on christianbook and I was wondering if anyone has ever heard of this book and if so if it’s based on Universalism as the title seems to indicate that it is(but I could be wrong which is why I’m asking)? - … ent=CFCER1


Well, I’m not sure but the book overview assures that I will buy it. Check out the amazon overview!

The authors, one a Roman Catholic priest from Rwanda and the other a white American Protestant, are the founding co-directors of the Center for Reconciliation at Duke Divinity School in the USA. This book is part of the Duke-based series on reconciliation (cf. §26.23 Forgiving as We’ve Been Forgiven), and Katongole also wrote the excellent spiritual analysis of the Rwanda genocide (cf. §25.19 Mirror to the Church). What makes this book stand apart is the clear emphasis on God’s redemptive story that must not be ignored when trying to reconcile seemingly hopeless situations and relationships (“we are too broken to fix it ourselves”). A Biblical emphasis on time is also essential, in that we must not forget history (and its pain), nor must we lose hope of a future community that is reconciled. The authors’ conviction is, “while never neglecting works of mercy and justice in a broken world, theology matters.” Reconciliation is first of all God’s idea, and that is the reason that the church is not just another social agency; it provides accountability when organizations do not. So true reconciliation is not a human achievement, strategy or programme, but a journey with God, and the outcome is unknown because faith is involved. Here the authors use Heb. 11 to assert that reconciliation needs to reshape the present based on the future, not predict the future based on the present. Reconciliation must begin with lament, so we may have to “unlearn” our attempts to have speedy solutions, to distance ourselves from pain and to deny our own guilt—so that we may learn the opposites, which are pilgrimage, relocation and confession.

The use of African illustrations are regularly employed, especially Nelson Mandela (“leaders are ones who learn to absorb pain without passing it on to others or to themselves”) and the Rwanda genocide, and many such examples stress having hope for reconciliation even when it seems humanly impossible because God reconciled us when we were still hopeless. The final chapter on heart, spirit and life goes deeper into the reasons that the church is essential to lasting reconciliation because otherwise pragmatism may take over (merely asking, “what works?”). The summary at the end of the book lists ten theses for recovering reconciliation as the mission of God and is a very useful outline of why the church is so important to reconciliation both within and outside the church. Theological institutions would certainly profit by using this small book as a text for courses and discussions on reconciliation and related issues

Good stuff worth looking into :smiley:


The book is available on Amazon at When I read through the user reviews, it doesn’t relate to universalism. But it does have relevance to Christianity.


You read reviews, I read synopsis!


Actually, I read both. The synopsis is usually done, by the author or publisher. The reviews are done, by folks in the trenches. Who actually buy the product.

Or take movies - for example. The movie producer wants you to pay good money - to see Transformers 2017 (out today). And they say, it is a great movie. But if I Google it, IMDB rates it " Rating: 5.3/10 - ‎8,072 votes".

It bolls down to this: Whom do you usually believe? The used car salesman? Or the customers, who bought cars from him?