Monday Giveaway #1: Richard Foster’s Sanctuary of the Soul!


sanctuary-of-the-soul-2We are so pleased to bring you the first in our Mondays in May giveaway series, celebrating our one-year “blog-iversary“! We can’t think of a better resource to offer for this first giveaway than the newest book by beloved Christian writer and teacher, Richard Foster, author of the contemporary classic, Celebration of Discipline.

Foster’s newest title, Sanctuary of the Soul, focuses on meditative prayer as a practice that is both ancient and contemporary–rooted in scripture and the writings of some of the oldest voices in the Christian tradition, yet also offering spiritual depth and wisdom to the individual Christian in today’s church.

wellness wheel

Spiritual health lies at the very core of the Duke Clergy Health Initiative’s vision of holistic wellness. Many of the clergy participating in Spirited Life have expressed an interest in learning more about Christian spiritual practices, particularly ones that enable them to refill their own “wells,” as they spend so much time feeding others. One way that our staff has tried to respond to this need is by devoting time  in our fall workshops to the practice of centering prayer. We’ve written about centering prayer on the blog here and here.  So it is with this enthusiasm for contemplative prayer that we chose this book to be our first giveaway item.

For a glimpse into the book, there is a great review of it by Rev. Jason Byassee, pastor of Boone UMC in Boone, NC, first printed in Books & Culture when the book was published in late 2011. Read the full review here, or enjoy this excerpt:

This was a hard book review to write. You can only read so much elegant prose inviting you to pray before you feel guilty for not actually praying. Richard Foster notes this difficulty, quoting Thomas Merton: “You cannot learn meditation from a book. You just have to meditate.”

True enough, but good books help, and Sanctuary of the Soul is a good one. Not a sentence is misplaced, each drives you to the next with the expectation that good things will be waiting. Like all of Foster’s work since his landmark book The Celebration of Discipline, this one presents the spiritual disciplines to an evangelical audience as disciplines that are (not paradoxically) grace-filled.  If Ron Sider and Tony Campolo made it possible for evangelicals to speak of social justice, Richard Foster has done the same for spiritual disciplines.

There are 3 ways to be entered in our giveaway:

  1. Take a moment to look back through the blog and find a post that catches your attention, then leave a comment with what you like about it!  ( = 1 entry)
  2. “Like” the Clergy Health Initiative’s facebook page! ( = 1 entry)
  3. Share our blog with 5 friends, and tell them about the giveaway! ( = 1 entry)

You can enter as many times as you’d like, just make sure to leave us a comment ON THIS POST with how many entries are “due” to you! That’s right, if you told 25 friends about the giveaway, and liked our facebook page, and left a comment on a previous post, you would be entered 7 times! We’re excited to spread the word about this gem of a book, and about the resources that this blog represents. Thanks for celebrating with us by participating in the giveaway!

A winner will be drawn on Friday morning, May 10, so be sure to get all your entries logged by 10 a.m. EDT Friday.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Thanks to ALL who supported the blog this week by leaving comments, “liking” the Duke Clergy Health Initiative Facebook page, and telling your friends! This week’s giveaway is now closed! And now, (drumroll, please!) the winner of Richard Foster’s Sanctuary of the Soul is Aundrea!  Congratulations!  Please contact us Aundrea, and let us know where to mail your book.

Check back next Monday for details on our next giveaway!

–Caren Swanson

14 thoughts on “Monday Giveaway #1: Richard Foster’s Sanctuary of the Soul!

  1. “It is well with my soul.” Most just know it as lyrics in a popular hymn. However, living in an anti-God culture (and often it is the church itself which seems that way) there has never been a time it seems when we needed to be intentional about our care of our own soul more. Thank you for your sincere efforts in this regard.

  2. Celebration of Discipline was one of my favorite books in seminary. That book was instrumental in guiding my life of prayer and meditation. I’m excited about this book! I’m due 3 entries 🙂

  3. I love posts on self care. As a mama and a pastor walking the line of self, family and congregational care is not easy. I appreciate the commitment of the writers to this part of the minister’s life.

  4. I shared your blog with lots of friends on Facebook and also “like” your page. (2 entries?!?) 🙂

  5. It’s always great time of sabbath to be calm and find peace to have time for meditative/centering prayer, or whatever form of time with God like just sitting at the pew in a sanctuary for a while, in the middle of our daily busy-ness.

    • Congratulations, Aundrea! We’re excited to share that you’ve won this week’s drawing. Please be in touch so that we can find out where to send your copy of Sanctuary of the Soul! Our email address is, or you can send us a message on Facebook.

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