Looking for a Skinner House discussion guide?

Wondering if there’s a study guide for that Skinner House book that you’d like to use for a religious education course? Now there’s a page on UUA.org devoted to Companion Resources for Skinner House Books.

In addition to study guides prepared by UUA staff and others, the resources include videos and UU World articles.

People are also invited to suggest other resources or create their own and submit them for posting on the site.

Author sought for multicultural practices book

Skinner House Books and the UUA’s Multicultural Ministries Team is seeking proposals for a book that will “inspire and give practical guidance” on the subject of making Unitarian Universalist communities authentically multicultural.

Writers are encouraged to address one or more of the following topics in such a book: leadership, justice, worship, and community. Mary Benard, Editorial Director for Skinner House, adds, “We are intentionally leaving the specifics about the form of the book open-ended. In fact,  we’re hopeful that we’ll publish more than one book as a result of this request for proposals. In the interest of timeliness, we will give preference to proposals that do not rely on more than three individuals to submit writing.”

Proposals should be grounded in personal experience, UU values and theology, and reflect a deep knowledge of the benefits and challenges of multicultural faith communities.

A complete proposal description is on the Skinner House website. Deadline for submissions is February 4. A complete list of other prospective books for which Skinner House is seeking authors is also on the website. Questions may be directed to mbenard @ uua.org.

New books about congregational fundraising, storytelling in worship

The following Skinner House titles are now available for pre-order through the UUA Bookstore:

The Generosity Path: Finding the Richness in Giving, by Mark Ewert, (available Dec. 20, $14). Ewert is a UUA congregational stewardship consultant. He writes about stewardship issues on his blog, Generosity Path.com. From the book description: “Financial giving can be a spiritual path. We have a deep potential for meaning-making and life satisfaction when we transform ourselves from occasional, haphazard donors to deliberate, ambitious philanthropists.”

A Good Telling: Bringing Worship to Life with Story, by Kristin Maier, (available  October 9, $16). Using the art of storytelling to enrich worship. Includes workshop materials to build storytelling skills, and resources for appropriate stories.

Other new books, suitable for adult education or book groups, include the following:

Where Two Worlds Touch: A Spiritual Journey Through Alzheimer’s, by Jade Angelica, (available December 16, $16).  Angelica chronicles her mother’s journey through Alzheimer’s and her own experiences with grief and the unexpected gifts that can come with this disease.

Jewish Voices in Unitarian Universalism, edited by Leah Hart-Landsberg and Marti Keller, (available Jan. 22, $14). A collection of reflections from people who are both UU and Jewish. From the book description: “While there has been a long and consistent presence of Jewish culture and people in Unitarian Universalism, this poignant anthology is the first to give voice to this community’s struggles, wisdom, and contributions. Essayists include born Jews who came to Unitarian Universalism, Unitarian Universalists who adopted Judaism as a spiritual path, and Unitarian Universalists who have encountered Judaism in diverse ways.”

Discounts are available for multiple copies.

Skinner House Books seeks meditation submissions

Skinner House Books, the imprint of the Unitarian Universalist Association, plans to issue a collection of meditations written by lay members of congregations. Deadline for submission of pieces for the collection is December 14.

Submitted pieces must be original poems, prayers, or short prose pieces. They can be serious, funny, tender, or frank. They should be suitable for both private reflection and public worship. Prose meditations should be between 200 and 650 words. Poems should be no longer than 54 lines. Full details are on the Skinner House website.

New Skinner House publications useful in congregations

Here are some new Skinner House publications that might be useful in your congregation:

Reaching for the Sun: Meditations by the Rev. Angela Herrera. This is the UUA’s most recent meditation manual. It is $8, with discounts for volume purchases.

• The Welcome Wallet Card Variety Pack features five inspirational and informational quotes about Unitarian Universalism. Packs of 100 cards are $6. Read the text of the quotes here.

Las Voces del Camino, the UUA’s Spanish-language hymnal has been published in a large print edition for use by pianists and individuals who have difficulty with standard print. Cost is $25.

• Available in mid-June will be Sources of Our Faith: Inspirational Readings, edited by the Rev. Kathleen Rolenz. Readings are taken from sources including the Qur’an, Margaret Fuller, Rumi, and Rebecca Parker.

Electronic books broadly available from Skinner, Beacon

Many books published by Skinner House and Beacon Press are available now as electronic books.

Skinner House has 16 books available as eBooks, through Google eBooks. Find a complete list at the UUA Bookstore website. Click on the red eBooks logo on the right side of the page. Those who buy Skinner House titles from Google will be able to read them on any eBook reader except the Kindle. The same titles will be available soon through the Amazon Kindle store as well.

Beacon publishes all new titles simultaneously in print and eBook editions and it has digitized hundreds of backlist titles. Its eBooks are available through Amazon/Kindle, B&N/Nook, Sony and many other eBook retailers. Beacon has also signed up with Google Books, which will open the door for independent booksellers to sell Beacon eBooks, says Tom Hallock, associate publisher at Beacon Press.

“We have made a special effort to digitize titles by Forrest Church, John Buehrens, and Rebecca Parker, and other writers of interest to UUs,” says Hallock. Books by Beacon authors who will attend GA this year are also available, including Margaret Regan’s The Death Of Josseline, (the first UU Common Read) and David Bacon’s Illegal People. Hallock said eBooks should account for about 4 percent of total Beacon sales this year. On individual new titles eBooks have been as much as 30 percent of sales.

Meditation manual submissions sought

Skinner House Books, the imprint of the Unitarian Universalist Association, is inviting members of congregations to submit proposals for the Spring 2012 UUA meditation manual. Meditations can be poetry or prose, humorous and personal or formal and liturgical. Meditations are generally 200 to 650 words long. Poetry meditations should be no longer than 54 lines each. All should be suitable for both private reflection and public worship.

A submission should include at least five and no more than ten complete pieces of original work and a cover letter. More information is here. Send submissions to Betsy Martin, Skinner House Books, 25 Beacon Street, Boston, MA 02108, or email her here.

Deadline for submissions is March 1, 2011, with a complete manuscript due by October 1, 2011. A complete manuscript should include approximately 40 pieces.

Now available: Skinner House eBooks

Big news! The UUA Bookstore and Skinner House Books have announced the launch of Skinner House eBooks. Sixteen titles are now available through Google eBooks, with more to come shortly. For a complete list of Skinner House eBooks and purchasing links, visit the UUA Bookstore website and click on the big red eBooks logo on the right side of the page.

Customers who buy Skinner House titles from Google will be able to read them on any eBook reader except the Kindle. The same titles will be available soon through the Amazon Kindle store as well.

More resources from Skinner House

Skinner House Books, a publishing arm of the UUA, has a new page on the UUA website called “Companion Resources.” There’s also a link in the left-hand menu on the front page of the Skinner House website.

The page offers links to free and practical resources, including bonus chapters, discussion questions, small group sessions, and webinars that can help readers and congregations get more out of Skinner House titles.

Users of the page are also invited to suggest additional resources, such as videos, sermons, worship readings, and website links, and to tell Skinner House staff how they’re using the existing resources. Contact Editorial Director Mary Benard at mbenard@uua.org. Benard adds, “We’d also love to know about resources that congregations have created themselves.”

Military meditation manual available

Bless All Who Serve: Sources of Hope, Courage and Faith for Military Personnel and Their Families, a new pocket-size book of readings and songs from many faith traditions, plus reflections by veterans and military chaplains, is available free to military chaplains, ministers, and enlisted men and women of all faiths.

Chaplains and ministers should email Julie Shaw for copies. Other military personnel and their families may email Lorraine Dennis at the Church of the Larger Fellowship for a free copy. All others can purchase it for $8 from the UUA Bookstore.

Bless All Who Serve was written by the Rev. Matthew Tittle and Gail Tittle, both military veterans, and published by Skinner House Books.