Monday, July 14, 2014

Rubble to Resurrection - Canterbury Earthquakes

Rubble to Resurrection (Churches Respond in the Canterbury Quakes)
Melissa Parsons
Daystar Books 2014
ISBN 978-0-9922552-9-9

In the midst of all the earthquake books recently published, Christchurch writer, Melissa Parsons, saw a gap. No one was telling the story of the experience of the churches or their involvement in the emergency response and community care. As she searched for someone to tell the story, the realisation dawned that she must do it herself.

With personal experience of the quakes as a resident and young mother, and her husband, Daryl’s position as a counsellor and Workplace Support manager, Parsons was well-placed for the task. She set about digging deep to find the story. She contacted 300 churches in the city, received responses from 95 of those, and interviewed 56 people. These included emergency responders, chaplains, ministers, church administrators and others able to talk about the experience of their own church.

This is not the story of any one denomination or church group. It is a combined story and is well organised in three sections: the Church Responds, the Church Grieves, and the Church Rebuilds. Told with sensitivity and compassion and written with skill the result is a readable account of a terrible time.

Some of the Canterbury earthquake stories are well known. For some of the hidden gems from people who do not seek publicity, I highly recommend this book.

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