A book launch celebration at Hope College on Friday, Sept. 15, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Fried-Hemenway Auditorium of the Martha Miller Center for Global Communication will feature reflections by the co-authors on how Christian faith offers a path from literal and figurative homelessness toward homecoming and homemaking.

The event will feature presentations by Dr. Steven Bouma-Prediger of the Hope College religion faculty and Brian J. Walsh, whose book “Beyond Homelessness: Christian Faith in a Culture of Displacement” is being published in a revised second edition this month by Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. of Grand Rapids, Michigan/Cambridge, England.  Copies of the book will be available for purchase, and Bouma-Prediger and Walsh will be available to sign.

Bouma-Prediger and Walsh will also be participating in a book launch hosted by the publisher on Saturday, Sept. 16, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at New City Farm, located at 1115 Leonard St. NE in Grand Rapids.

The public is invited to both events.  Admission is free.

“Most people who think about homelessness focus on socioeconomic homelessness, which we do address,” said Bouma-Prediger, who is the Leonard and Marjorie Maas Professor of Reformed Theology at Hope, “but we also explore ecological homelessness — not feeling at home on our home planet — and also a third type we call postmodern homelessness, in which people have a house but don’t feel at home.”

The two authors have updated and expanded the book, originally published in 2008, with new content including a new preface and 10,000-word postscript.  In the postscript, he says, “We deal mostly with race, gender, ethnocentrism and LGBTQ+ issues that weren’t as prominent when we were writing back in the early 2000s.”

Bouma-Prediger and Walsh, who is now retired campus minister and adjunct professor of theology at the University of Toronto, not only offer a diagnosis of different forms of homelessness but also show how the resources of Christian faith can healingly address these ailments of our age.  For example, they argue that social policies that do not adequately help those in need, practices that damage and destroy the environment, and an individual sense of isolation all reflect the need for a return to a biblical understanding of home that emphasizes living in community with others and responsible care of creation.

Bouma-Prediger is an award-winning author who has spent the past four decades studying and writing about the connections between Christian faith and creation care, and “Beyond Homelessness” is one of three books he has being published this fall.

“Creation Care Discipleship: Why Earthkeeping Is an Essential Christian Practice” is being published by Baker Academic of Grand Rapids, Michigan, and will be available on Tuesday, Oct. 17.

“Ecoflourishing and Virtue: Christian Perspectives Across the Disciplines” will be published on Friday, Nov. 10, by Routledge of London, England. Bouma-Prediger co-edited the book with Dr. Nathan Carson, who is associate professor and program director of philosophy at the Fresno Pacific University, where he also directs the Sierra Program.

Bouma-Prediger has been a member of the Hope faculty since 1994. He chaired the Department of Religion from 2006 to 2013, and from 2013 to 2017 was the associate dean for teaching and learning. He also oversees the college’s Environmental Studies minor and co-chairs the Campus Sustainability Advisory Committee, otherwise known as the Green Team.  In addition to his classroom teaching, he has taught a May Term course in the Adirondacks, “Ecological Theology and Ethics,” for 40 years.  He is also an adjunct professor at Western Theological Seminary, and teaches in Belize and New Zealand for the Creation Care Study Program.

His numerous publications include five previous books concerning ecology and theology: “The Greening of Theology: The Ecological Models of Rosemary Radford Ruether, Joseph Sittler, and Juergen Moltmann”; “Assessing the Ark: A Christian Perspective on Nonhuman Creatures and the Endangered Species Act,” which he co-authored with Virginia Vroblesky; “Evocations of Grace: The Writings of Joseph Sittler on Ecology, Theology, and Ethics,” which he co-edited with Peter Bakken; “For the Beauty of the Earth: A Christian Vision for Creation Care”; and “Earthkeeping and Character: Exploring a Christian Ecological Virtue Ethic.”

He co-authored two chapters in the book “Living the Good Life on God’s Good Earth” and is also the author of numerous published scholarly articles and essays. He has presented many papers and invited addresses.

“For the Beauty of the Earth,” won an Award of Merit from Christianity Today in the theology/ethics category of the magazine’s 2002 Book Awards program, and in December 2000 “Evocations of Grace” was one of only five books named “editor’s picks” book of the year by the journal Christian Century.

The Martha Miller Center for Global Communication is located at 257 Columbia Ave., at the corner of Columbia Avenue and 10th Street.