Thursday, December 19, 2013

All Seasons End

In T.S. Eliot's poem , The Journey of the Magi he notes that the coming of Christ marked the end of an era in the world.  While this end is not at that level, I am formally closing the ISCTL blog for good. I will be retiring from MPOW this month. The link to the poem read by the poet is here.

I plan to start a new blog soon related to other issues, but have to do some thinking about it.  . As soon as I do I will announce it and try for a larger audience.
 If you are surprised at another post from me, I am aware that the ISTCL has been slowly fading, partly deliberately and partly because I wanted to explore other social media.

  I tried to keep to the original spirit of blogging:  short notes with links and published as often as the writer wished.  It was distressing to see the format evolve to lengthier, more formal writing.  While I enjoyed reading them, I neither had the inclination nor the time to compose such posts.  That will be changing.

The world of blogging has opened up indirect acquaintances with dozens of others who write about books, writing, crafts, culture, history, politics and much more.  For that I thank you each and every one.  This has been a good journey. The road is continuing.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Trailers for Christian Books

About two years ago, I posted about book trailers
 and thought it was time to revisit this topic.   Christian Book Videos popped up in my search.  Do you use trailers to help in your selection of any reading material?

Seasons of Preparation

As Christians always seem to be preparing for some event.  We just finished Advent and Christmas and and here comes Lent (unless you aren't in a Christian tradition which adheres to the church calendar and if you are in church choirs you know what preparation is even without the traditional liturgies.)
How do you prepare for Joy, i.e. Easter?

I have a book for you not about Lent so don't wonder about the connection.  It was written by a former colleague of mine at MPOW.  When the Pastor is Your Husband: The Joy and Pain of Ministry Wives.  In the Protestant traditions, we all experience the pastor's wife.  We may not understand her unique position just as we may not understand and appreciate wives of men in the armed forces, police or fire.  Although this book is designed for the pastor's wife, anyone interested in her role will find it useful. 

Tuesday, November 06, 2012


There is no season for voting but just as we are to be ready to give an answer about our Christian beliefs, we should be ready to vote.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Advice Please

I have recently begun to assist at my church's library once a month and I'm enjoying the change of pace from academic books.  As probably with most church libraries,  the vast majority of literature wanted is  Christian light fiction but not the Walker Percy kind. 

So how does an academic library fit here?
We own several biblioaphies, among them GenreFlecting from Libraries Unlimited which has a good section on Christian Fiction which I plan to share with those in charge.  However, it is not exhaustive by any means.  For instance, the Guidepost mystery series is a group found in some public libraries but really collected in church libraries.  Now I became addicted if that's the word for it to this series as a Christmas read while waiting on others to wake up.  I'm also wondering if current Christian fiction for Young Adults has any place in this particular library and if it would be read.  That's not something specifically addressed in this bibliography I don't know if teens really think of this library as a resource for them.
  Also, the bibliography is dated  (2006) and doesn't cover audio or ebooks in Christian Fiction.  I plan to see if there is a need for these and help pursue ways to access them as they might draw in more users. I may only be at the library once a month, but I'm already seeing connections to our academic holdings which I may be able to use for readers here as well as there.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricanes and Tempests in Teapots

First, I hope everyone within Sandy's reach has prepared and stays safe.  (Somehow images of horror films where everyone should be safe but circumstances dictate otherwise come to mind. )

Next, last Friday a student worker stopped at my desk at MPOW and asked if I could help them at the circulation desk with a problem person who was demanding to see the manager, but said manager was involved in a very important meeting.

I agreed, as I am the Experienced One and should be able to move a Situation to a Satisfactory Conclusion.  Hurricane Sandy move aside.  The person was a non student user who had unfortunately been given wrong information and was insisting we could check out materials on a card from another library.  Now here's where it gets glitchy-- a little.  Yes this person could have the special permission to check out materials--but only if the form is filled out at the library where the card came from.  I was tempted to just fill out a form and send it over to that library.  However, I didn't.  Meanwhile the person is growing more irate as we were not acceding to an increased barrage of demands and finally we did have to call down the manager.  Our solution was to give away another borrowing card, but in the meantime it was discovered that the material desired was not at our library and there was an even greater error in communication.  The remains of this tempest was that the student left with nothing but a new card which was not desired and probably going to vent rage on the primary library for the misinformation.  We were left to pick up the debris of worried feelings and a little finger pointing but not much.  The Experienced One is still picking at things today.

Monday, September 03, 2012

Busman's Holiday

On the Sunday before Labor Day, I volunteered to help at the My Place of Worship (MPOW) church library.  I usually don't volunteer for activities I do every day, but when the call came for help, this duty was the easiest to fit into a "teach on demand" schedule.  Actually, I enjoyed spending the 90 minutes there and meeting some of the dedicated cadre of volunteers this church has developed.  How many people engage in activities related to their work on their own time?

What is it about some occupations that lend interest outside the workplace?  I'm not sure, but I did a search on religious aspects of work and finally decided the  Subject, "Quality of Work" was the closest to what I wanted.  Although I didn't find a reference work, America at Work, seemed to fit some of the issues we need to consider before we misplace our priorities. 

"According to sociologists, life is divided into three parts: work, worship and play.  Unfortunately, we worship our work, play at our worship, and work at our play."  This quote has been attributed to many people and I have not found the exact source yet.  Help would be appreciated.  

Do holidays like Labor Day encourage these off balance attitudes. Certainly these days should be times when we pause and reflect on the meaning of work and labor and probably also think about those who are still enslaved throughout the world.