Could it be that the stories we tell in our churches weaken our efforts to be congregations who take risks in mission for the sake of love? In this thought-provoking book, Emily Ralph Servant suggests that the work of today’s leaders is to explore new stories, listen to new voices, and open ourselves up to the Spirit’s work of transformation.
Experiments in Love engages in a three-way dialogue with feminist and liberation theologians, the social and behavioral sciences, and the Anabaptist tradition. Out of this vibrant conversation emerges the story of a God who takes the risk of being radically present to a vulnerable world. Because of God’s courageous presence with us, we can also take the risk of being vulnerably present to others as God invites us all to participate in God’s community of life, love, and flourishing.
“Much Anabaptist missiological literature is mostly male. And growing stale. That will change with Emily Ralph Servant’s important work here which brings fresh multidisciplinary lenses to the conversation and the stinging critique that, even though martyrdom stories are cherished within the Anabaptist movement, today’s Mennonite reality ‘rarely resembles the community of risk-takers who birthed it.’ I will buy copies of Servant’s book for my congregational leadership team and recommend it in seminary teaching.”–James R. Krabill, Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary, Elkhart, Indiana
“A conversation about risk and mission is overdue in Mennonite contexts. While theological perspectives vary widely across the Anabaptist movement, we can all be challenged by the reminder that love, not fear, is the driver of a truly Jesus-centered church.”–Meghan Larissa Good, Teaching Pastor, Trinity Mennonite Church
“Yes, mission is a risky business; this book calls us back into true mission. Ralph Servant takes the reader through a spiral of liberation, weaving in risk-taking. She holds up a mirror to white churches, reflecting their fear of change and departure from their courageous Anabaptist beginnings. Her zealous prophetic voice reminds the church to give of itself as in Jesus’s praxis: in mutual relationships, engaging the margins by practicing ‘vulnerable presence, ‘ and embodying God’s love.”–Elizabeth Soto Albrecht, coeditor of “Liberating the Politics of Jesus: Renewing Peace Theology through the Wisdom of Women”
A limited quantity of books are available directly from Emily at a discounted price of $20 (local pickup in Lansdale, PA, Lancaster, PA, Boyertown, PA or Baltimore, MD; shipping extra). To purchase one or more of these copies, please request them using the contact form. Emily will be in touch to confirm availability and pickup location or shipping address.