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Novels and the Education of a Pastor

A couple questions for those of you have done seminary or ministry training: Were you ever assigned any novels as part of your coursework? I’m re-reading Marilynne Robinson’s novel “Gilead” for a book club discussion tomorrow morning. “Gilead,” written as a letter from an aging, ailing Congregationalist to his very young son, is a profoundly beautiful book, and if anyone ever asked me to recommend a novel to include in seminary training, this would be it. The novels “Diary of a Country Priest” and Wendell Berry’s “Jayber Crow” (about Port William’s town barber) also come to mind. What about you? Which novels would you recommend for future pastors, ministers, practitioners, etc.?

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