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                              Primary Category
                                          Sub-category                               Definition

ARCHITECTURE /                                                   Facilities, layouts,
Religious Buildings         CHURCH & MINISTRY                    designs, other
                                        CHURCH LIFE CHURCH ARCHITECTURE

                                                                            All Christian biography
BIOGRAPHY &                                                                 and autobiography
AUTOBIOGRAPHY /                                                             including African
Religious                   INSPIRATION MOTIVATION                          Americans, missions.
                                                              BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY

BUSINESS &                                                         Personal financial
ECONOMICS / Personal                                               planning and money
Finance / General           CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         PRACTICAL LIFE            management.
                                                      PERSONAL FINANCE

                                                                                Cookbooks, collections of
                                                                                recipes and preparation
                                        GENERAL TOPIC
                                                    COOKBOOK                    techniques.

                                                                                Biblical, historical &
                                                                                contemporary dramas
                                                                                and skits in a church
                                                                                setting. Also resources.
DRAMA / Religious &                                                             Include puppet ministries
Liturgical                  CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                        MINISTRY RESOURCES
                                                    DRAMA                       and clown resources here.
                                                                       Books for aging process
                                                                       including seniors, mid-life
                                                                       crises, menopause,
                                                                       retirement, etc.
                                                                       Resources in providing
                                                                       care for aging are in
FAMILY &                                                               Church Ministry to
                                   PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                AGING                  Seniors.

Eldercare                  CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                        PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                     CARE GIVING       Giving care to others

                                                                  Fiction written before
FICTION / Christian                                               1950 & allegorical style
Fiction / Classic & Allegory FICTION   GENERAL                    fiction.
                                                    CLASSIC & ALLEGORY
                                                                  Apocalyptic novels set in
                                                                  the future (usually End
FICTION / Christian                                               Times). Includes science
Fiction / Futuristic       FICTION     GENERAL      FUTURISTIC    fiction.
FICTION / Christian                                               Happening in today's
Fiction / General          FICTION     GENERAL      CONTEMPORARY  setting.
                                                                  General fiction not
FICTION / Christian                                               covered by other
Fiction / General          FICTION     GENERAL      GENERAL       categories.
                                                                  The historical setting is
                                                                  primary driving element
FICTION / Christian                                               of story. Includes Biblical
Fiction / Historical       FICTION     GENERAL      HISTORICAL    fiction.
FICTION / Christian
Fiction / Romance          FICTION     GENERAL      ROMANCE            Central theme is romance.
                                                            Collection of brief fictional
FICTION / Christian                                         stories with Christian
Fiction / Short Stories   FICTION   GENERAL   SHORT STORIES characters and values.

                                                                  "Who done it" and fiction
                                                                  with high degree of
FICTION / Christian                                               suspense, including
Fiction / Suspense        FICTION   GENERAL   SUSPENSE            Action/thrillers.
                                                           A western setting usually
                                                           during second half of
FICTION / Christian                                        19th century though early
Fiction / Western     FICTION     GENERAL     WESTERN      20th Century.
                                                           Word games, quizzes,
                                                           crossword puzzles,
                                                           mostly for individual
                                                           enjoyment for general
                                                           adults. Children's
                                                           quizzes, etc. goes with
                                                           activity books - see
                                  GENERAL TOPIC            Children.
                                              PUZZLES & GAMES

                                                                   Books with trivia
                                  GENERAL TOPIC
                                              TRIVIA               questions and answers.

                                                              Books designed to help
                                                              the Christian lead a
                                                              healthy life-style.
HEALTH & FITNESS /                                            Resources on diet,
Healthy Living        CHRISTIAN LIVING          DIET & HEALTH illness, and injury.
                                   PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                              Gardening; home arts
                                                              and crafts, decorating
HOUSE & HOME /                                                and home maintenance.
General                  GENERAL INTEREST        HOUSE & HOME Crafts in general.
                                     GENERAL TOPIC

                                                                        Cartoons, joke books with
                                     GENERAL TOPIC
                                                 HUMOR                  humor as prime content.

Religious / Christian    YOUTH                      TEEN
                                        YOUTH INTERESTS FICTION

                      YOUTH             YOUTH INTERESTS   GENERAL
JUVENILE NONFICTION / Christianity / Christian Life / General

                      YOUTH             YOUTH INTERESTS   ISSUES
JUVENILE NONFICTION / Christianity / Christian Life / General

                      YOUTH             YOUTH INTERESTS   CHRISTIAN LIVING
JUVENILE NONFICTION / Christianity / Christian Life / General
Religion / Devotional & Prayer   YOUTH                     DEVOTIONAL & PRAYER
                                               YOUTH INTERESTS

/ Social Issues / Dating &                                                    Dating for teens. Sex
Sex                        YOUTH               YOUTH INTERESTS
                                                           DATING & SEX       education for teens.

                                                                        Gift books for graduates
JUVENILE NONFICTION                                                     are under seasonal
/ Study Aids / General YOUTH                   YOUTH INTERESTS          books.
                                                           COLLEGE PREPARATION

                       YOUTH              Studies     BIBLE
                                                                      Resources for
                                                                      professional, minister &
MUSIC / Religious / Christian    CHURCH & MINISTRY                    worship leaders.
                                             CHURCH LIFE CHURCH MUSIC RESOURCES
                                                                          General music books of
                                                                          value to Christian reader.
                                                                          Music books of various
                                                                          topics. Examination of
                                                                          role of music in
                                                                          Christian's life. Include
MUSIC / Religious /                                                       critiques of rock music
Christian                GENERAL INTEREST
                                     LITERATURE & MUSIC
                                                  THE ARTS                here.

                                                                     Collections of poetry of
                                                                     value and interest to
                                                                     Christian reader. Usually
                                                                     written by Christian
                                                                     authors. Does not
POETRY / Inspirational &                                             include poetry books in
                                                       THE ARTS      gift format.
                                                                     Decorative and
                                                                     inspirational. Often given
Recategorize - See Album super category inGIFTCPCs
                          INSPIRATION Gift BOOK                      as gifts.
                                                       ALBUMS, SCRAPBOOKS, ADDRESS
Recategorize - See Album super category inGIFTCPCs
                          INSPIRATION Gift BOOK                      Dedication
                                                       BABY BOOK & BIRTH
                                                                     Includes dated "Life
                                                                     Systems". Personal
Recategorize - See Calendar super categoryGIFT BOOK
                          INSPIRATION in Gift CPCs                   planners.
                                                       CALENDAR & DATEBOOK - DATED
                                                                     Includes undated "Life
                                                                     Systems". Personal
Recategorize - See Calendar super categoryGIFT BOOK
                          INSPIRATION in Gift CPCs                   planners.
                                                       CALENDAR & DATEBOOK - UNDATED
                                                                     Decorative and
Recategorize - See CPC                                               inspirational. Often given
Super Album               INSPIRATION GIFT BOOK                      as
                                                       JOURNAL & DIARY gifts.
                          INSPIRATION GIFT category CPCs             Wedding related
Recategorize - See Wedding & Anniversary super BOOK inWEDDING & GUESTBOOKS, ETC.
RELIGION / Antiquities &                                            Archeology of Biblical
Archaeology                  BIBLICAL STUDIES                       periods and
                                                      BIBLICAL ARCHEOLOGY regions.
                                          GENERAL STUDIES
                                                                          Commentaries are books
                                                                          which focus
                                                                          systematically on one or
                                                                          more books of Scripture
                                                                          with comments on the
                                                                          meaning of each verse
                                                                          and/or chapters. It
                                                                          includes other types of
                                                                          analysis and background
                                                                          material such as author,
                                                                          date, political situation,
                                                                          etc. Books dealing with
                                                                          topics or themes only of
                                                                          individual books of
RELIGION / Biblical                                                       Scripture will be in
Commentary / General         BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                          COMMENTARIES ENERAL
                                                     G                    General Biblical Studies.
RELIGION / Biblical                                                       Complete Bible in 1 vol.,
Commentary / General         BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                          COMMENTARIES NE VOLUME
                                                     O                    OT 1 vol., NT 1 vol.

RELIGION / Biblical                                                Complete, OT set, NT
Commentary / General                      COMMENTARIESET & SERIES set, or series of any type.
                             BIBLICAL STUDIES        S
                                                                   Singles, sets on single
RELIGION / Biblical                                                book, exegesis of NT
Commentary / New Testament   BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                          COMMENTARIESEW TESTAMENT
                                                     N             book
                                                                   Singles, sets on single
RELIGION / Biblical                                                book, exegesis of OT
Commentary / Old Testament                COMMENTARIES LD TESTAMENTbook.
                             BIBLICAL STUDIES        O
                                                                   A collection of maps of
                                                                   Bible lands and regions.
RELIGION / Biblical                                                Include geography books
Reference / Atlases                       REFERENCE BIBLE ATLASES here.
                             BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                                                     An alphabetical listing of
                                                                     common Biblical words
                                                                     with Scripture references
RELIGION / Biblical                                                  indicating where they
Reference / Concordances BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                      REFERENCE          CONCORDANCE occur in the Bible.

                                                                        An alphabetical listing of
                                                                        Bible words and
                                                                        theological terms with
RELIGION / Biblical Reference /                                         descriptions and
Dictionaries & Encyclopedias    BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                             REFERENCE                  explanations of meaning.
                                                         BIBLE DICTIONARY

                                                                      A collection (alphabetical)
                                                                      of articles generally
RELIGION / Biblical Reference /                                       covering the whole body
Dictionaries & Encyclopedias    BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                             REFERENCE   ENCYCLOPEDIA of Biblical knowledge.

                                                                            Broad general interest
RELIGION / Biblical                                                         with ideas generally
Reference / General      GENERAL INTEREST
                                     GENERAL TOPIC
                                                 REFERENCE                  accepted by Christians.
                                                                            General Reference books
                                                                            whose value can be
                                                                            applied to the whole Bible
                                                                            e.g. concordances,
                                                                            dictionaries, Bible
RELIGION / Biblical                                                         pronunciations, Gospel
Reference / General      BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                      REFERENCE          GENERAL            Harmonies, etc.
                                                                            Scripture passages
                                                                            arranged under headings
                                                                            by topic or subject.
                                                                            Arranged alphabetically
                                                                            and usually with system
RELIGION / Biblical                                                         of cross references.
Reference / General                   REFERENCE
                         BIBLICAL STUDIES                TOPICAL BIBLE
                                                                      Overview of entire Bible,
                                                                      book by book (mainly in
                                                                      broad outline) including
                                                                      author, context, etc.
                                                                      Arranged in order of the
RELIGION / Biblical                                                   Bible. Also called
Reference / Handbook     BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                      REFERENCE       HANDBOOK        Companion.

                                                               Bilingual dictionaries,
RELIGION / Biblical                                            grammars, phrase books,
Reference / Language                                           etc. English as a second
Study                    GENERAL INTEREST
                                      GENERAL TOPIC            language (ESL).
                                                  FOREIGN LANGUAGE
                                                               Grammars, Lexicons, and
                                                               related books on Biblical
                                                               Greek, Biblical Hebrew,
                                                               Aramaic, Latin, etc.;
                                                               Original language
                                                               theological word books or
RELIGION / Biblical                                            dictionaries; books on the
Reference / Language                                           theory and practice of
Study                    BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                      LANGUAGE TOOLS
                                                  GENERAL      translation.
                                                               Includes Bible words
                                                               (alpha in English) which
                                                               are defined and
                                                               explained. Also may
                                                               provide idioms and
                                                               nuance of the original
                                                               Greek/Hebrew text, word
                                                               derivation, exegetical
                                                               commentary, word history
                                                               and etymology, and
                                                               synonym and antonym
                                                               lists. Word studies alpha
                                                               in Greek/Hebrew are
RELIGION / Biblical
                                                               listed with Language
Reference / Language
Study                                 REFERENCE WORD STUDIES
                         BIBLICAL STUDIES
RELIGION / Biblical
Reference / Quotations               GENERAL TOPIC
                         GENERAL INTEREST        QUOTE BOOK
                                                                    Individual (independent)
                                                                    or small group study,
                                                                    usually interactive with fill-
                                                                    in-blank format, based on
RELIGION / Biblical Studies /                                       a specific Bible book or
Bible Study Guide               BIBLICAL STUDIES STUDY BOOK RELATED topic.
RELIGION / Biblical Studies /
Bible Study Guide                            BIBLE
                                BIBLICAL STUDIES STUDY GENERAL

                                                                              Individual (independent
                                                                              study) or small group
                                                                              study, usually interactive
RELIGION / Biblical Studies /                                                 with fill-in-blank format.
Bible Study Guide               BIBLICAL STUDIES STUDY TOPICAL
                                             BIBLE                            Based on a general topic.

RELIGION / Biblical
Studies / Exegesis &                                                   Theory and practice of
Hermeneutics                    BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                             GENERAL STUDIES           biblical interpretation.
                                                         EXEGESIS & HERMENEUTICS
                                                                       Bible characters, general
                                                                       themes, general surveys
                                                                       of Bible, Canon, guides to
                                                                       various translations,
                                                                       inclusive language
                                                                       debates. Items/themes
RELIGION / Biblical                                                    not part of theology. Also
Studies / General               BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                             GENERAL STUDIES
                                                         GENERAL       introductions to the Bible.
                                                                       Gospel of Thomas, Mary,
                                                                       Nag Handmaid, plus
                                                                       other 2nd century books
RELIGION / Biblical                                                    not accepted in the
Studies / General               BIBLICAL STUDIES TESTAMENT STUDIES
                                             NEW         APOCRYPHA     cannon of Scripture.
RELIGION / Biblical                                                    DEUTEROCANONICAL
Studies / General               BIBLICAL STUDIES TESTAMENT STUDIES
                                             OLD                       & Apocrypha books.
                                                         DEUTEROCANONICAL & APOCRYPHAL
                                                                        History of Bible times,
                                                                        Jewish History, Acho
                                                                        Vol., Extra Biblical of
                                                                        whole Bible. Includes
                                                                        Manners and Customs of
                                                                        Bible times explaining
                                                                        many everyday lifestyle
                                                                        and customs of
                                                                        individuals in Bible times.
                                                                        Includes things like
                                                                        people, places, food,
                                                                        housing, clothing, social
                                                                        customs, etc. Include
                                                                        Philo, Josephus,
RELIGION / Biblical Studies /                                           Qumran community and
History & Culture               BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                             GENERAL STUDIES            the Dead Sea Scrolls.
                                                         BIBLICAL HISTORY & CULTURE

RELIGION / Biblical Studies /                                         Matthew, Mark, Luke,
Jesus, the Gospels & Acts                    NEW        GOSPELS &     John, Acts.
                                BIBLICAL STUDIES TESTAMENT STUDIES ACTS
                                                                      Works that deal with
                                                                      Christ's earthly ministry
                                                                      and teachings. Life and
                                                                      Teachings, Sermon on
                                                                      the Mount, Parables.
                                                                      (Books on Christology -
                                                                      the scholarly study of the
RELIGION / Biblical Studies /                                         nature of Christ are found
Jesus, the Gospels & Acts                    NEW        JESUS STUDIES in theology).
                                BIBLICAL STUDIES TESTAMENT STUDIES
RELIGION / Biblical                                            I & II Peter, James,
Studies / New Testament                NEW        OTHER LETTERSHebrews

RELIGION / Biblical
                                       NEW        REVELATION           Revelation, Apocalypse

RELIGION / Biblical                                                    Include translator's
                                       NEW        GENERAL              handbooks.

                                                                Introduction and overview
                                                                of NT literature, history,
RELIGION / Biblical                                             languages. Includes NT
                                       NEW                      surveys.
                                                  NT INTRODUCTION

RELIGION / Biblical                                                    Theology in the New
                                       NEW        THEOLOGY             Testament.

RELIGION / Biblical
                                       OLD         HISTORICAL          Judges - Esther
                                                                         First five books of OT.
                                                                         Commentaries would not
                                                                         go here but books
                                                                         dealing with themes,
RELIGION / Biblical                                                      characters or parts of
                                        OLD         PENTATEUCH           individual books would.
RELIGION / Biblical
Studies / Old Testament                 OLD         GENERAL

                                                                  Introduction and overview
                                                                  of OT literature, history,
RELIGION / Biblical                                               languages. Includes OT
                                        OLD                       surveys.
                                                    OT INTRODUCTION
RELIGION / Biblical
                                        OLD         THEOLOGY             Theology in the OT.

                                                                Paul, Letters of Paul,
RELIGION / Biblical                                             Colossians, Ephesians,
Studies / Paul's Letters                NEW        PAUL AND HIS etc.

                                                                  Studies of "predictive"
RELIGION / Biblical                                               prophecy and fulfillment
Studies / Prophecy         BIBLICAL STUDIES
                                        GENERAL STUDIES           in OT & NT
                                                    PREDICTIVE PROPHECY

                                                                         Focus on the OT
RELIGION / Biblical                                                      prophets and their
                                        OLD         PROPHETS             messages.
RELIGION / Biblical                                                   Job, Psalms, Proverbs,
Studies / Wisdom                                                      Ecclesiastes, Song of
Literature                                                            Songs,
                                BIBLICAL STUDIES TESTAMENT STUDIES WISDOM Ruth, Joshua
                                             OLD         WRITINGS &
                                                                      Books that offer
                                                                      specialized training and
                                                                      enrichment for church
                                                                      business managers,
                                                                      pastors, and others
                                                                      responsible for
                                                                      administration in local
                                                                      church congregations,
                                                                      church agencies and
RELIGION / Christian                                                  institutions. Also church
Church / Administration         CHURCH & MINISTRY                     staff relations.
                                             CHURCH LIFE CHURCH ADMINISTRATION
                                                                      Addressing the complex
                                                                      issues of our world's
                                                                      ongoing cultural shifts
                                                                      and the impact this will
RELIGION / Christian Church /                                         have on the local church
General                                                               and
                                             CHURCH LIFE EMERGING CHURCHits ministries.
                                CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                                                      Books on understanding
                                                                      and organizing the
                                                                      ministries of the church.
                                                                      Also church renewal,
                                                                      body life, etc. Include
RELIGION / Christian                                                  roles of deacon and
Church / General                CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                             CHURCH LIFE GENERAL      elders here.

                                                                    Studies that focus on the
                                                                    planting and growth of
                                                                    congregations. Include
                                                                    Cell ministries, house
                                                                    churches plus books like
RELIGION / Christian                                                Purpose Driven Church/
Church / Growth                 CHURCH & MINISTRY                   Revival
                                            CHURCH LIFE CHURCH GROWTH
                                                               History of the church.
                                                               Includes Patristics (early
                                                               Church Fathers) and
RELIGION / Christian                                           Hagiography (Lives of the
Church / History          CHURCH & MINISTRY                    Saints).
                                      CHURCH LIFE CHURCH HISTORY

                                                                      Stewardship is the
                                                                      responsibility given to
                                                                      humans in creation for
                                                                      managing the resources
                                                                      of the earth. Church
                                                                      finance provides
                                                                      resources for church
                                                                      leaders responsible for
                                                                      financial administration in
                                                                      local church
                                                                      congregations, church
                                                                      agencies and
RELIGION / Christian                                                  institutions. Often these
Church / Stewardship &                                                two topics are combined
Giving                                      CHURCH LIFE STEWARDSHIP &as a church focus.
                               CHURCH & MINISTRY                       CHURCH FINANCE
                                                                      Theory and methodology
                                                                      of various aspects of
                                                                      Christian education. Also
                                                                      includes general
                                                                      educational issues:
                                                                      private vs. public schools,
                                                                      funding for public
                                                                      education, and Christian
RELIGION / Christian                                                  and church related higher
Education / General            CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                            MINISTRY RESOURCES        education.
                                                        CHRISTIAN EDUCATION
                                                                      Books used by teachers
                                                                      in classroom setting.
                                                                      Includes coloring books
                                                                      and lesson books.
RELIGION / Christian Education                                        Annual Lesson
/ General                      CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                            MINISTRY RESOURCES
                                                        TEACHING HELPScommentaries here.
                                                                      Books for parents on
                                                                      methodology, theory and
                                                                      practice of education and
                                                                      learning within the family
RELIGION / Christian Education / General RELATIONSHIPS
                               CHRISTIAN LIVING         HOME SCHOOLINGcontext.
                                                                   Death and dying, grief,
                                                                   and consolation. Also
RELIGION / Christian Life                                          treatments of life after
/ Death, Grief, &                                                  death. Books for pastor
Bereavement               CHRISTIAN LIVING                         are CONSOLATION
                                                    GRIEF, SUFFERING, in Pastoral Care.
                                       PRACTICAL LIFE

                                                                   Books with devotional
                                                                   entries, usually intended
                                                                   to be read on daily basis.
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                        Short meditations, usually
Devotional                    INSPIRATION MOTIVATION DEVOTIONAL    with prayer and Scripture.
                                                                   Lectionary, Christian
                                                                   Year. Lectionary is a
                                                                   compilation of Scripture
                                                                   readings for each day of
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                        year for personal or
Devotional                    CHURCH & MINISTRY                    church worship
                                                      LECTIONARY RESOURCES services.
                                          PASTORAL HELP

                                                                    Books dealing with family
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                         life usually in Christian
Family                        CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                           RELATIONSHIPS            context.
                                                       FAMILY CONCERNS

RELIGION / Christian Life /                                               Parenting resources
Family                        CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                                       PARENTING          (including single parents)
                                                                          Books that apply
                                                                          Christianity to practical
                                                                          areas of life. Christian
                                                                          Life titles usually will
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                               focus on the following
General                       CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                           PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                        GENERAL           Sub-cats and issues.
                                                                               Usually hard back gift
                                                                               books. Much smaller than
                                                                               mass size. Limited text
                                                                               and illustration. Often
RELIGION / Christian Life                                                      sold like cards. Gift
/ Inspirational           INSPIRATION GIFT BOOK                 MINI BOOK      oriented.
                                                                               Gift by design, binding,
RELIGION / Christian Life                                                      illustration, generally
/ Inspirational           INSPIRATION GIFT BOOK                 GENERAL        themed.
                                                                               Generally 100 years old
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                                    with long history of
Inspirational                     INSPIRATION MOTIVATION        CLASSICS       readership.
                                                                               A broad category of
                                                                               books which encourage
                                                                               and promote Christian
                                                                               faith. May contain some
                                                                               mixture of memoirs, life
                                                                               stories, insight of divine
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                                    guidance, as perceived to
Inspirational               INSPIRATION MOTIVATION              GENERAL        be received from God.
RELIGION / Christian Life / Inspirational
                            INSPIRATION GIFT BOOK                              Illness
                                                                ILLNESS & GET WELL
                                                                               Size of Honor series -
                                                                               limited text often with
RELIGION / Christian Life / Inspirational
                            INSPIRATION GIFT BOOK               POTABLES       visuals.
                                                                               All scripture promise
RELIGION / Christian Life / Inspirational
                            INSPIRATION GIFT BOOK               PROMISES       books here.

                                                                          Books dealing with the
                                                                          many facets of marital life
                                                                          and intimacy including
                                                                          issues of growing healthy
RELIGION / Christian Life                                                 marriages, romance, and
/ Love & Marriage                 CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                               RELATIONSHIPS              troubled marriages.
                                                            LOVE & MARRIAGE
                                                                          Focus on the marriage
                                                                          relationship for couples
RELIGION / Christian Life                                                 who are getting ready for
/ Love & Marriage                 CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                               RELATIONSHIPS              marriage.
                                                            MARRIAGE PREPARATION
                                                                          Books to honor mothers
RELIGION / Christian Life                                                 and celebrate Father's
/ Men                             GENERAL INTEREST
                                               SEASONAL     FATHER'S DAY Day.
                                                                          Focused on unique
                                                                          needs and interests or
                                                                          men including parenting
                                                                          and marriage issues
                                                                          when strictly focused on
                                               PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                            MEN           men.
                                                                     Branch of science that
                                                                     deals with the inner
                                                                     workings of the mind.
                                                                     Approached from a
RELIGION / Christian Life / Personal GrowthPRACTICAL LIFE
                            CHRISTIAN LIVING            PSYCHOLOGY   scientific point of view.

                                                                     Looking at ones
                                                                     individuals needs in order
                                                                     to grow as a human.
                                                                     Includes emotional and
                                                                     mental well being.
                                                                     Approaches from a
RELIGION / Christian Life / Personal GrowthPRACTICAL LIFE
                            CHRISTIAN LIVING            SELF HELP    personal point of view.
RELIGION / Christian Life
/ Personal Growth                          PRACTICAL LIFE
                            CHRISTIAN LIVING            PERSONAL GROWTH

                                                                     Prayer books, theory and
                                                                     practice. Also, books on
                                                                     Blessings and fasting.
                                                                     (Rosary and Novenas are
RELIGION / Christian Life                                            in the Catholic sub-
/ Prayer                  CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                       SPIRITUAL GROWTH
                                                    PRAYER           category Church Life).
                                                                    Choosing or changing
                                                                    jobs, job hunting and
                                                                    being a Christian in the
RELIGION / Christian Life                                           workplace. Include time
/ Professional Growth       CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                      CAREER        management books here.
                                                                    Business leadership,
                                                                    business management,
                                                                    often written from with
                                                                    Biblical insights. John
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                         Maxwell business
Professional Growth         CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         PRACTICAL LIFE             oriented here.
                                                      BUSINESS & LEADERSHIP

                                                                        Deals with addiction,
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                             codependency, and
Counseling & Recovery         CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                           PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                        RECOVERY        the12-step programs.
                                                                          Books to help understand
                                                                          and survive the breakup
                                                                          of a marriage. Including
RELIGION / Christian Life                                                 Biblical understanding of
/ Relationships           CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                                   DIVORCE                divorce.

RELIGION / Christian Life                                           General not covered in
/ Relationships           CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                                   GENERAL          other categories.
                                                                    Sex education books for
                                                                    use in family setting.
                                                                    Usually in series. Books
                                                                    aimed at teens for
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                         personal use will go
Relationships               CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         RELATIONSHIPSSEX EDUCATION under youth.
                                                                    Examines the unique
                                                                    aspects of single life.
                                                                    Does not includes books
RELIGION / Christian Life                                           on family life for single
/ Relationships             CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         RELATIONSHIPSSINGLE LIVING parent.
RELIGION / Christian Life
/ Relationships             CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         RELATIONSHIPSDATING         Dating issues for adults.
                                                                    Focus on the relationship
                                                                    roles of males and
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                         females in context of
Relationships               CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         RELATIONSHIPSSEXUALITY     sexual needs.
RELIGION / Christian Life /
Social Issues                            PRACTICAL LIFE
                            CHRISTIAN LIVING          CONTEMPORARY ISSUES
                                                                    Development of a
                                                                    disciplined and joyful
                                                                    spiritual life, especially
                                                                    one enhanced by the
                                                                    Holy Spirit. Expressed
                                                                    through practices and
                                                                    rituals that enhance the
                                                                    sense of God's presence
                                                                    and reality. Enables one
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                         to draw closer to God.
Spiritual Growth            CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         SPIRITUAL GROWTH
                                                      GENERAL       Gifts of the Spirit here.
                                                                    Restoring to health and
                                                                    wholeness of human life
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                         through spiritual reliance
Spiritual Growth            CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         SPIRITUAL GROWTH
                                                      HEALING       on God.
                                                                    The experience of the
                                                                    union with God that
                                                                    brings a sense of direct
                                                                    knowledge of and
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                         fellowship with God
Spiritual Growth            CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         SPIRITUAL GROWTH
                                                      MYSTICISM     centered in Jesus Christ.
                                                                    Aids and resources
                                                                    designed to foster growth
                                                                    in spiritual life through
                                                                    techniques, methods,
                                                                    habits, tools, or regimens.
                                                                    Will usually be identified
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                         as "Spiritual Growth/
Spiritual Growth            CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                         SPIRITUAL GROWTH           Formation".
                                                      SPIRITUAL FORMATION
                                                                    To study, meditate and
                                                                    give thought to the
                                                                    meaning of ones spiritual
                                                                    life, Include here non-
                                                                    sectarian monastic rules
                                                                    (Rule of St Benedict),
RELIGION / Christian Life                                           Veniti. General
/ Spiritual Growth          CHRISTIAN LIVING          CONTEMPLATIVEmeditation books here.
                                         SPIRITUAL GROWTH             LIFE
                                                                  Books that help Christian
RELIGION / Christian Life /                                       discern and resist the
Spiritual Warfare         CHRISTIAN LIVING                        work of
                                                    SPIRITUAL WARFARE Satan.
                                       SPIRITUAL GROWTH
                                                                  Books to honor mothers
RELIGION / Christian Life                                         and celebrate Mother's
/ Women                   GENERAL INTEREST
                                       SEASONAL     MOTHER'S DAY Day.
                                                                  Focused on unique
                                                                  needs and interests or
                                                                  women including
                                                                  parenting and marriage
                                                                  issues when strictly
                                                                  focused on women.
                                                                  Includes vignettes of life
                                                                  as a woman, a wife, a
                                                                  mother as well as titles
RELIGION / Christian Life                                         dealing with home
/ Women                   CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                       PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                    WOMEN         management.

                                                                           Ministry resources
                                                                           focused on Children
                                                                           including After School
                                                                           Care, Day Care, Mother's
                                                                           Day Out, Pre-school, etc.
                                                                            Include activity and
                                                                           coloring books designed
                                                                           for Sunday School use.
                                                                           Often reproducible or
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                            have multiple copies of
Children                          CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                               MINISTRY RESOURCES          same picture.
                                                            CHILDREN'S MINISTRY
                                                                           Includes resource books
                                                                           with clip art, bulletin
                                                                           board design, banner
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                            design, Christmas, Jessie
Children                                       MINISTRY RESOURCES ARTS & Tree, etc.
                                  CHURCH & MINISTRY         CHURCH          CRAFTS
                                                                           Of interest to the pastoral
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                            counselor in church
Counseling & Recovery             CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                               PASTORAL HELPPASTORAL CAREsetting.
                                                                             & COUNSELING
                                                                           Spiritual art of
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                            especially by non-
Counseling & Recovery             CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                               PRACTICAL LIFE              professional.
                                                            ENCOURAGEMENT & LAY COUNSELING
                                                                         Books that help a disciple
                                                                         (pupil, learner or
                                                                         adherent) learn how to
                                                                         live their faith in the
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                          world. Also include books
Discipleship                    CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                             SPIRITUAL GROWTH            for new believer.
                                                          DISCIPLESHIP & NEW BELIEVER

RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                       Theory and practice of
Evangelism                      CHURCH & MINISTRY                     evangelism.
                                            CHURCH LIFE EVANGELISM & OUTREACH

                                                                     Packages of tracts
                                                                     (folded, printed sheets).
                                                                     Booklets usually book
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                      form and stapled.
Evangelism                      GENERAL INTEREST                     Usually
                                                        TRACTS & BOOKLETS 32 pages or less.
                                            GENERAL TOPIC
                                                                     Church wide programs.
                                                                     Programs for special
                                                                     celebrations in a church
RELIGION / Christian                                                 setting. Includes chalk
Ministry / General              CHURCH & MINISTRY                    talks.
                                            CHURCH LIFE PROGRAM RESOURCES
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                      Ministry resources
General                   CHURCH & MINISTRY            ADULT MINISTRYfocused on Adults
                                           MINISTRY RESOURCES
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                      Stephen Ministries,
General                   CHURCH & MINISTRY                          Parish
                                           MINISTRY RESOURCES MINISTRIES nurse, Hospice.
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                      Ministry resources
                                                       FAMILY        focused on Families
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                      Include general church
                                                       GENERAL       wide programs here.
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                      Ministry resources
                                                       SINGLE        focused on Singles
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                      Ministry resources
General                   CHURCH & MINISTRY            SMALL GROUP focused on Small Groups
                                           MINISTRY RESOURCES
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                      Ministries to deaf and
General                   CHURCH & MINISTRY                          other
                                           MINISTRY RESOURCES MINISTRY disabilities
                                                                     Ministry resources
RELIGION / Christian Ministry / General MINISTRY
                          CHURCH &                     SENIOR        focused on Seniors.
                                           MINISTRY RESOURCES MINISTRY
                                                                       History, theory and
                                                                       practice of Christian
                                                                       missionary endeavors.
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                        Include cross-cultural
Missions                          CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                              CHURCH LIFE MISSIONS     evangelism here.
                                                                       General books that aid
                                                                       the pastor in his ministry.
                                                                       Includes pastoral tax
                                                                       guides. (Church
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                        administration is under
Pastoral Resources                CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                              PASTORAL HELP
                                                          GENERAL      Church Life).
                                                                       Analysis and insight for
                                                                       pastoral leadership skills;
                                                                       Chaplaincy; Leadership
                                                                       of Special Ministries such
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                        as Street Ministry, Prison
Pastoral Resources                CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                              PASTORAL HELP
                                                          LEADERSHIP   Ministry, etc.
                                                                       Focuses on liturgy and
                                                                       the concepts of the
                                                                       ordinances, Sacraments,
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                        Wedding/Funeral
Pastoral Resources                CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                              PASTORAL HELP            Resources.
                                                          MANUALS & RESOURCES
                                                                       Resources for clergy on
                                                                       professional skills, the
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                        pastoral role, and other
Pastoral Resources                CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                              PASTORAL HELP            special needs.
                                                          PROFESSIONAL GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT
                                                                    Sermon preparation,
                                                                    sermon outlines and the
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                     theology and practice of
Preaching                       CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                            PASTORAL HELP
                                                        PREACHING   preaching.
RELIGION / Sermons /                                         Children Sermons, object
Christian              CHURCH & MINISTRY                     lessons,
                                               CHILDREN'S SERMONS and resources
                                   PASTORAL HELP
RELIGION / Sermons /
Christian                          PASTORAL HELP
                       CHURCH & MINISTRY                     Collections of sermons.
                                               SERMONS & ILLUSTRATIONS
                                                                      Theology and shape of
                                                                      worship, liturgical studies,
                                                                      and worship aids. Liturgy
                                                                      is the service of God by
RELIGION / Christian Ministry / Worship MINISTRY
                                CHURCH & & Liturgy                    the people of God.
                                            CHURCH LIFE WORSHIP & LITURGY
                                                                      Ministry resources
                                                                      (including ideas and
                                                                      theory) focused on Youth
RELIGION / Christian Ministry /                                       including youth group
Youth                           CHURCH & MINISTRY
                                            MINISTRY RESOURCESMINISTRY
                                                        YOUTH         activities.

                                                                     An academic study of the
RELIGION / Christian Rituals &                                       place of rituals and myths
Practice / General             GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
                                           OTHER                     within religion.
                                                      RITUAL & MYTH STUDIES
                                                                        Theology of Sacraments
RELIGION / Christian Rituals &                                          (Manuals/Liturgy under
Practice / Sacraments          THEOLOGY   THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE
                                                      SACRAMENTS        Pastoral Helps)

RELIGION / Christian Theology                                      Doctrine of Angels/
/ Angelology & Demonology     THEOLOGY    SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY      Demons
                                                      ANGEOLOGY & DEMONOLOGY
RELIGION / Christian Theology
/ Anthropology                THEOLOGY               ANTHROPOLOGYDoctrine of Man
                                         SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY      & MAN

                                                                     Resources that defend
                                                                     the faith, usually from a
                                                                     philosophical or Biblical
                                                                     perspective. Also the
                                                                     endeavor to provide a
                                                                     reasoned account of the
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                        grounds for believing in
/ Apologetics                 THEOLOGY   THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE
                                                     APOLOGETICS     the Christian faith.
                                                                 Doctrine of Christ or
                                                                 nature of Christ. Usually
                                                                 somewhat scholarly.
                                                                 Books that Works that
                                                                 deal in general with
                                                                 Christ's earthly ministry
                                                                 and teachings are found
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                    in Biblical Studies - New
/ Christology                 THEOLOGY               CHRISTOLOGY Testament.
                                         SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY
RELIGION / Christian Theology
/ Ecclesiology                THEOLOGY   SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY      Doctrine of Church.
                                                     ECCLESIOLOGY & CHURCH

RELIGION / Christian Theology                                     Doctrine of Last Things
/ Eschatology                 THEOLOGY   SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY      and Times.
                                                     ESCHATOLOGY & END TIMES
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                    History and theory of
/ Ethics                      THEOLOGY   THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE
                                                     ETHICS      ethics, Christian morality.

                                                                 General Doctrines &
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                    Theology, including
/ General                     THEOLOGY   THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE
                                                     DOCTRINES   methodology.
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                      Theology based on
/ General                     THEOLOGY                             Creeds and
                                                     DOGMATICS & CREEDS Confessions.
                                         THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE
                                                                   What is theology, how to
                                                                   think theologically,
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                      Introduction to various
/ General                     THEOLOGY   THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE
                                                     GENERAL       theologies, etc.
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                      Study of numbers in the
/ General                     THEOLOGY               NUMEROLOGY Bible
                                         THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE
                                                                   A branch of practical
                                                                   theology dealing with the
                                                                   relationships between the
                                                                   Word of God and the
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                      Christian lives of God's
/ General                     THEOLOGY               PASTORAL      people.
                                         THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE & PRACTICAL THEOLOGY
                                                                   The approach to theology
                                                                   that employs the
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                      methods, terms and
/ General                     THEOLOGY               PHILOSOPHICAL resources of philosophy.
                                         THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE       THEOLOGY

                                                                   The study of the views of
                                                                   theologians and of the
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                      Christian Church, in their
/ History                     THEOLOGY                             historical
                                                     HISTORICAL THEOLOGYcontexts.
                                         THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE
                                                                 Theological efforts to
                                                                 relate Christian theology
                                                                 to the contemporary
                                                                 world. Includes
                                                                 Constructive Theology,
                                                                 Postmodern theology,
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                    Feminist Theology, and
/ Liberation                  THEOLOGY   THEOLOGY & DOCTRINE     Liberation Theology.
                                                     CONTEMPORARY THEOLOGIES
                                                                 Doctrine of Holy Spirit
                                                                 including works, gifts and
                                                                 theology of Holy Spirit.
                                                                 Books on fruits of the
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                    Spirit should go to
/ Pneumatology                THEOLOGY               PNEUMATOLOGYSpiritual Growth.
                                         SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY       & HOLY SPIRIT
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                      Doctrine of Salvation,
/ Soteriology                 THEOLOGY   SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY       Atonement, Justification
                                                     SOTEIRIOLOGY & SALVATION
                                                                      The branch of Christian
                                                                      theology that attempts to
                                                                      present theological
                                                                      thinking and practice in
                                                                      an orderly and coherent
                                                                      way and implies an
                                                                      underlying philosophical
                                                                      frame of reference and
                                                                      method. Include works
                                                                      on nature and
                                                                      methodology of
                                                                      systematic theology;
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                         multi-volume complete
/ Systematic                  THEOLOGY   SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY
                                                     GENERAL          systematic theologies.
RELIGION / Christian Theology
/ Systematic                  THEOLOGY               HAMARTIOLOGY Doctrine of Sin.
                                         SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY        & SIN
RELIGION / Christian Theology                                       Inspiration and authority
/ Systematic                  THEOLOGY   SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY        of Scripture
                                                     REVELATION & INSPIRATION SCRIPTURE
                                                                 Practices and beliefs
                                                                 specifically connected
                                                                 with the Roman Catholic
                                                                 Church (such as
RELIGION / Christianity /                                        Mariology, Novenas,
Catholic                    CHURCH & MINISTRY                    Papacy).
                                        CHURCH LIFE ROMAN CATHOLIC
                                                                 Practices and beliefs
                                                                 specifically connected
RELIGION / Christianity /                                        with the Roman Catholic
Catholic                    YOUTH       YOUTH INTERESTS          Church.
                                                    ROMAN CATHOLIC
                                                                  General art books of
                                                                  value to Christian reader.
                                                                  Collections of Christian
RELIGION / Christianity /                                         art. Books dealing with
Literature & the Arts       GENERAL INTEREST
                                        LITERATURE & ART ARTS
                                                     THE          art and the Christian.
                                                                  A short treatise or a
                                                                  written account of events/
                                                                  recollections that do not
RELIGION / Christianity /                                         specifically include
Literature & the Arts       GENERAL INTEREST         THE ARTS     Christian testimony.
                                        LITERATURE & ESSAYS & MEMOIRS

                                                                         General books of
                                                                         literature of value to
                                                                         Christian reader.
                                                                         Including secular general
RELIGION / Christianity /                                                interest titles with topics
Literature & the Arts       GENERAL INTEREST
                                        LITERATURE & GENERAL
                                                     THE ARTS            of interest to Christians.
                                                               Greek, Russian and other
                                                               Orthodox communions:
RELIGION / Christianity / Orthodox & MINISTRY
                           CHURCH       CHURCH LIFE ORTHODOX   history, polity & doctrine
                                                                   Books from Pentecostal
                                                                   and charismatic circles.
                                                                   Works on theology of the
RELIGION / Christianity /                                          Holy Spirit are found in
Pentecostal & Charismatic   INSPIRATION MOTIVATION   CHARISMATIC   Pneumatology/Holy Spirit.
                                                               Books of interest to
                                                               various denominations,
                                                               including Baptist,
                                                               Methodist, Church of
                                                               Christ etc. Statement of
                                                               denomination beliefs and
                                                               government. Include
                                                               comparison of
                                                               denominations. Include
                                                               history of specific
RELIGION / Christianity /                                      churches, denominations
Protestantism             CHURCH & MINISTRY                    here.
                                      CHURCH LIFE PROTESTANT DENOMINATIONS
                          GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
RELIGION / Comparative Religion       OTHER       JUDAISM

                        GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
RELIGION / Comparative Religion     OTHER      BUDDHISM
                                                            Studies of religions in
                                                            general and other
                                                            religions not listed
                                                            following, plus inter-
RELIGION / Comparative Religion
                        GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
                                    OTHER      GENERAL      religious dialogue.
                                                            Analysis, study and
                                                            comparison of various
                                                            world religions, often from
                                                            the perspective of
RELIGION / Comparative Religion
                        GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
                                    OTHER                   Christianity.
                                               COMPARATIVE RELIGIONS
                                                            Non orthodox groups or
                                                            movements claiming to
                                                            be Christian yet have
                                                            unorthodox theology.
                                                            Include books on
                                                            Mormons and Jehovah's
                                    OTHER      CULTS        Witness here.
                                                            Non Christian beliefs
                                                            centered around
                                                            Satanism, demonology,
RELIGION / Comparative Religion
                        GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
                                    OTHER                   and witchcraft.
                                               OCCULT, DEMONOLOGY, WITCHCRAFT

                                                              Spiritualist movements
                                                              originating in 1970's (and
                                                              since) that as a loose
                                                              grouping emphasis
                                                              beliefs such as
                                                              reincarnation, importance
                                                              of dreams, psychic or
                                                              holistic healing, and self-
                                                              fulfillment, etc. Expanded
                                                              human potentials and
                                                              social and planetary
RELIGION / Comparative Religion
                        GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
                                    OTHER      NEW AGE        renewal are advocated.

                        GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
RELIGION / Comparative Religion     OTHER      HINDUISM

                        GENERAL INTEREST RELIGION
RELIGION / Comparative Religion     OTHER      ISLAM

                                                              Books which focus on the
                                                              desire for unity among
                                                              churches and believers in
                                   CHURCH LIFE ECUMENISM      Jesus Christ.
                                                                  Books with historical and
                                                                  cultures issues of African
                                                                  American cultures and of
                                                                  special interest to the
                                                                  African American market.
RELIGION / Ethnic & Tribal               ETHNIC                    Not
                                                    AFRICAN AMERICAN biographies.
                             GENERAL INTEREST & CULTURAL

                                                                         Books with historical and
                                                                         cultures issues of ethnic
                                         ETHNIC     ASIAN                cultures. Not biographies.

                                                                Books with historical and
                                                                cultures issues of ethnic
                                         ETHNIC     GENERAL     cultures. Not biographies.
                                                                Books with historical and
                                                                cultures issues of
                                                                Hispanic cultures. Not
                                         ETHNIC     HISPANIC    biographies.
                                                                Books with historical and
                                                                cultures issues of other
                                                                ethnic cultures. Such as
                                                                Native Americans,
                                                                aboriginals. Not
                                         ETHNIC     OTHER
                                                             General interest; general
                                                             for homeschooling use,
                                    GENERAL TOPIC
                                                HISTORY      etc.

                                                             Items for celebrating of
                                                             Advent/ Christmas.
                                                             Includes Advent
                                                             calendars, programs,
RELIGION / Holidays / Christmas & Advent SEASONAL
                          GENERAL INTEREST          ADVENT   supplies.
                                                                Books with
                                                                Christmas/Advent mixed
RELIGION / Holidays / Christmas & Advent SEASONAL
                          GENERAL INTEREST          CHRISTMAS   go here.

                                                                All adult gift and season
RELIGION / Holidays /                                           theme books included
Christian               GENERAL INTEREST
                                    SEASONAL        GENERAL     here.
RELIGION / Holidays / Easter &
Lent                           GENERAL INTEREST
                                           SEASONAL   EASTER           Easter related

RELIGION / Holidays / Easter &                                         Lent and Easter
Lent                           GENERAL INTEREST
                                           SEASONAL   LENT             combined would go here.
RELIGION / Holidays /                                                  Halloween related
Other                          GENERAL INTEREST
                                           SEASONAL   HALLOWEEN        (Christian Perspective)
RELIGION / Holidays /
Other                          GENERAL INTEREST
                                           SEASONAL   THANKSGIVING Thanksgiving related
                                                                   Books to celebrate
RELIGION / Holidays /                                              someone on Valentine's
Other                    GENERAL INTEREST
                                     SEASONAL         VALENTINES   day.
                                    GENERAL TOPIC
                                                PHILOSOPHY   General interest
                                                                  Exams relationship of
                                                                  science and Christian
                                                                  faith, including the issue
                                                                  of creation and evolution.
                                                                  Also focuses on the
                                                                  Christian response to
RELIGION / Religion &                                             new scientific knowledge
Science                 CHRISTIAN LIVING          SCIENCE, FAITH, and culpability.
                                     PRACTICAL LIFE                EVOLUTION

                                                                        Primarily focused on
RELIGION / Religion,                                                    Christian's involvement in
Politics & State        CHRISTIAN LIVING
                                     PRACTICAL LIFE
                                                  POLITICS              politics.
                                                               Christian travel helps;
TRAVEL / Special Interest /                                    sites of historical interest
Religious                     GENERAL INTEREST
                                          GENERAL TOPIC
                                                      TRAVEL   to Christians.

RELIGION / Christian
Rituals & Practice /
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Those that apply to Liberation, otherwise
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The art and science of designing religious buildings and structures including
the total environment, from the macro level of town planning, urban design,
and landscape architecture to the micro level of creating furniture.
Architectural design usually addresses both feasibility and cost for the builder,
and function and aesthetics for the user. Planned architecture often
manipulates space, volume, texture, light, shadow, or abstract elements in
order to achieve pleasing aesthetics. Many architectural works may be seen
also as cultural and political symbols, and/or works of art.

A genre of literature based on the written accounts of the lives of religious
individuals, usually in reference to non-fiction. A biography develops complex
insight and highlights different textures of personality including intimate details
of experiences. A biography is more than a list of impertinent facts like birth,
education, work, relationships and death. It also delves into the emotions of
experiencing such events. An autobiography is a biography written by the
subject or composed conjointly with a collaborative writer. Biographers
generally rely on a wide variety of documents and viewpoints; an
autobiography may be based entirely on the writer's memory.
Management of personal finance issues from a foundation of Biblical principles
and teachings. Includes mortgages, retirement, bankruptcy, credit, budgeting,
saving, investing, planning, and taxation issues. ***May need to include tithing
and giving.
Cooking is the act of preparing food for consumption. It encompasses a vast
range of methods, tools and combinations of ingredients to improve the flavor
or digestibility of food. It generally requires the selection, measurement and
combining of ingredients in an ordered procedure in an effort to achieve the
desired result. Constraints on success include the variability of ingredients,
ambient conditions, tools and the skill of the individual cooking. The diversity of
cooking worldwide is a reflection of the myriad nutritional, aesthetic,
agricultural, economic, cultural and religious considerations. Cookbooks
include a collection of recipies that may comprise dishes served for religious
Drama is a literary form involving parts written for actors to perform. Dramas
can be performed in a variety of media: live performance, film, or television.
"Closet dramas" are works written in the same form as plays (with dialogue,
scenes, and "stage directions"), but meant to be read rather than staged.
Drama is also often combined with music and dance, such as in opera which
is sung throughout, musicals which include spoken dialog and songs, or plays
that have musical accompaniment.

Drama content is biblical in nature, either historical or contemporary, and is
usually performed in a church setting.
Aging is the process of becoming older. The social, cultural, and economic
effects of aging. Aging is an important part of all human societies reflecting the
biological changes that occur, but also reflecting cultural and societal
conventions. Age is usually, but wholly arbitrarily, measured in years and a
person's birthday is often an important event.

Older people have different requirements from society and government as
opposed to young people, and frequently differing values as well. Older people
are also far more likely to vote and thus have comparatively more political

Elder care is a broad term encompassing such services as assisted living,
adult day care, long term care, nursing homes, hospice care, and Alzheimer's
care. The majority of elderly care facilities are freestanding, but they may also
be part of a continuing-care retirement community, seniors apartment
complex, or wing or floor of a nursing home.

Elder care emphasizes the social and personal requirements of senior citizens
who need some assistance with daily activities and health care, but who desire
and deserve to age with dignity. It’s an important distinction, in that the design
of housing, services, activities, employee training and such is truly customer-
centered. Elder Care is focused on satisfying the expectations of two tiers of
customers: the resident customer and the purchasing customer.

An allegory is a figurative mode of representation conveying a meaning other
than (and in addition to) the literal. Though it is similar to other rhetorical
comparisons, an allegory is sustained longer and more fully in its details than a
metaphor, and appeals to imagination, while an analogy appeals to reason or
logic. The fable or parable is a short allegory with one definite moral.
A short story is a form of short fictional narrative prose. Short stories tend to
be more concise and to the point than longer works of fiction, such as novellas
(in the modern sense of this term) and novels. Because of their brevity,
successful short stories rely on literary devices such as character, plot, theme,
language, and insight to a greater extent than long form fiction.

Short stories have their origins in the prose anecdote, a swiftly-sketched
situation that comes rapidly to its point, with parallels in oral story-telling
traditions. Short stories tend to be less complex than novels. Usually, a short
story will focus on only one incident, has a single plot, a single setting, a limited
number of characters, and covers a short period of time.

Modern short stories occasionally have an exposition. More typical, though, is
an abrupt beginning, with the story starting in the middle of the action. As with
longer stories, plots of short stories also have a climax, crisis, or turning-point.
However, the endings of many short stories are abrupt and open and may or
may not have a moral or practical lesson.

Determining what exactly separates a short story from longer fictional formats
is problematic. A classic definition of a short story is that it must be able to be
read in one sitting. Other definitions place the maximum word length at 7,500
Suspense or tension is the feeling of uncertainty and interest about the
outcome of certain actions an audience perceives in a dramatic work. It
consists of having some real danger looming and a ray of hope. The two
common outcomes can be: the danger hits, whereby the audience will feel
sorrowful or the hope comes true, whereby the audience will first feel joy, then
satisfaction. If there is no hope, the audience will feel despair.
The thriller is a broad genre of literature with numerous overlapping sub-
genres. Thrillers are suspenseful adventures with fast-paced plots and action,
where resourceful heroes are pitted against villains, with the hero facing
danger alone, or in the company of a small band of companions.
The hero may be a law enforcement agent, a journalist, a soldier, or an
ordinary citizen, drawn into danger and intrigue by circumstances beyond his
or her control. The plot is often driven by a villain, who presents obstacles that
the hero must overcome. A thriller uses suspense as an indispensable
ingredient, evoking feelings of tension and excitement. Plot devices such as
red herrings, foreshadowings, and cliffhangers are often employed.
Westerns are set in the American West, almost always in the 19th century,
generally between the 1860's and 1900. Some incorporate the Civil War.
Westerns often involve semi-nomadic wanderers, often cowboys, with life
reduced to its elements. Their sole possessions consisting of: clothing, a gun,
and a horse. The high technology of the era – such as the telegraph, printing
press, and railroad – may appear, usually symbolizing the coming end of the
frontier soon to give way to the march of civilization.

The Western takes these simple elements and uses them to tell simple
morality tales, usually set against the spectacular scenery of the American
West. Westerns often stress the harshness of the wilderness and frequently
set the action in a desert-like landscape. Specific settings include lonely
isolated forts, ranches, the isolated homestead, the saloon or the jail. Other
iconic elements in westerns include Stetsons and Spurs, Colt .45s, prostitutes
and the faithful steed.

The western genre often portrays the conquest of the wilderness and the
subordination of nature, in the name of civilization or the confiscation of the
territorial rights of the original inhabitants of the frontier. The Western depicts a

A puzzle is a problem or enigma presented as entertainment that is written
down, acted out, etc. Many puzzles stem from serious mathematical or
logistical problems, whereas others are devised for the sole purpose of being
brain teasers.
The term trivia is widely used to refer to unimportant (or trivial) information, but
it can also refer to basic or elementary knowledge. Before the trivia subculture
became widespread, via radio and TV quiz shows and books, the term
commonly referred to bits of information to which most adults in the culture
had at one time been exposed, via standard education or via popular culture.
In time, the term came also to comprise more obscure and arcane bits of
Health is a term that refers to a combination of the absence of illness, the
ability to cope with everyday activities, physical fitness, and high quality of life.
In any organism, health can be said to be a "state of balance," or analogous to
homeostasis, and it also implies good prospects for continued survival.
Wellness is a term sometimes used to describe the psychological state of
being healthy, but is most often used in the field of alternative medicine to
describe one's state of being.

Health is maintained through the science of medicine, but can also be
improved by individual effort. Physical fitness, weight loss, healthy eating, and
stress management training are examples of steps to improve one's health.
Workplace programs are recognized by an increasingly large number of
companies for their value in improving health and well-being of their
employees, and increasing morale, loyalty and productivity at work. A company
may provide a gym with exercise equipment, implement smoking cessation
programs, and provide nutrition, weight or stress management training. Other
programs may include health risk assessments and health screenings.               Use for ECPA only.
House and home includes issues pertaining to cleaning and caretaking,
decorating, design and construction, carpentry, electrical, masonry, plumbing,
appliances, furniture, hand tools, house plans, outdoor areas, and remodeling.

Garden design is the process of designing the layout and planting of domestic
gardens. Garden designers are also concerned with the layout of yardscape,
including paths, water features, patios and decking. The elements of garden
design include landform, water features, fountains, garden ponds, garden
planting, garden buildings, garden lighting, garden sculpture, garden
ornament, garden furniture and hard landscape materials. These elements are
used to make a wide range of garden types.

Interior decoration is the art of decorating a room so it looks good, is easy to
use, and functions well with the existing architecture. The goal of interior
decoration is to provide a certain "feel" for the room; it encompasses applying
wallpaper, painting walls and other surfaces, choosing furniture and fittings,
such as light fixtures, and providing other decorations for the area such as
paintings and sculptures. There is a distinct difference between interior
decorating and interior design. Interior decorating is generally focused on
finishes, such as wallpaper, paint, window coverings, and furnishings.

Home repair involves the diagnosis and resolution of problems in a home, and Use for ECPA only.
Humor is the ability to evoke feelings of amusement in other people. The term
encompasses a form of entertainment or human communication which evokes
such feelings, or which makes people laugh or feel happy. Includes cartoons
and joke books with humor as the main content.

Fiction is the storytelling of imagined events and stands in contrast to non-
fiction, which makes factual claims about reality. A large part of the appeal of
fiction is its ability to evoke the entire spectrum of human emotions: to distract
our minds, to give us hope in times of despair, to make us laugh, or to let us
experience empathy without attachment. Fictional works—novels, stories,
fables, fairy tales, Anime and Manga—may be partly based on factual
occurrences but always contain some imaginary content. The term is also
often used synonymously with literature and more specifically fictional prose.
In this sense, fiction refers only to novels and is often divided into two
categories, popular fiction (e.g., science fiction or mystery fiction) and literary
fiction (e.g., Victor Hugo or William Faulkner). These books specifically relate
to juvenile audiences and are of a religous content.

Use same as CL / General once the definition is developed

use same as CL / Social Issues?

Devotion is a term used to designate several related activities within the
Christian church. Most frequently, this term refers to a period of time set aside
to study the Bible and pray in an effort to build a stronger spiritual relationship
with God. This time is often spent alone or with a small group of people. These
books contain directed Bible studies often incorporating stories or anecdotes
that convey Biblical principles, similar to the parables used by Jesus in his
ministry. Devotionals are most often formatted in an ordinal manner.

The term also refers to an individual story or message that follows the above
format. Pastors and youth ministers who speak using stories as opposed to
sermons are said to be giving a "devotion(al)".

In the Roman Catholic Church, devotions are generally forms of prayer that
take place outside of the official liturgy of the Mass and Divine Office. While
the faithful are required to paticipate in the liturgy, devotions are strictly
optional, although highly recommended, and by Canon Law must take place
outside of the liturgy to avoid confusion. In the Latin Rite, well-known devotions
include the Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, the Stations of the Cross, Lectio
Courtship or dating is the process of selecting and attracting a mate for
companionship, marriage, and sexual reproduction. In many traditional
societies, courtship is a highly structured activity, with well-known rules. A date
is an occasion when one socializes with a potential spouse. In this sense, the
purpose of a date is for the people dating to get to know each other and decide
whether they want to have a relationship. Dating may be the term describing
the relationship of two people attending a date.

Sex education is a broad term used to describe education about human sexual
reproduction, sexual intercourse, and other aspects of human sexual behavior.
It often includes topics such as sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and how
to avoid them, as well as methods of contraception. Abstinence. Yikes, help
with this one please.

A common approach to sex education is to view it as necessary to reduce risk
behaviors such as unprotected sex, and equip individuals to make informed
decisions about their personal sexual activity.

Study aids are student tools used to help facilitate learning and comprehension
of literature, research topics, history, and other subjects. Most study guides
summarize chapters of novels or the important elements of the subject. There
are a number of companies that produce or distribute study guides, including
Cliffs Notes, SparkNotes, BookRags, QuickStudy, Pinkmonkey and eNotes.

Independent or small group studies of a biblical book or theme usually
containinig interactive discussion quesitons or having a fill-in-the-blank format.
Religious music includes sheet music or books of music with a staff and treble
cleff, etc. The history of music, music programs, and musicals for the chruch
setting are included.

Poetry is traditionally a written art form in which human language is used for its
aesthetic qualities in addition to, or instead of, its notional and semantic
content. The increased emphasis on the aesthetics of language and the
deliberate use of features such as repetition, meter and rhyme, are what are
commonly used to distinguish poetry.

Poetry often uses condensed form to convey an emotion or idea to the reader
or listener, as well as using devices such as assonance, alliteration and
repetition to achieve musical or incantatory effects. Furthermore, poems often
make heavy use of imagery, word association, and musical qualities.




Antiquities, ancient history, is the study of significant cultural and political
events from the beginning of human history until the Early Middle Ages.

The classical antiquity is a term that is often used to refer to ancient history
since the apogee of Ancient Greece in about 776 BC. This coincides – roughly
– with the traditional date of the Founding of Rome in 753 BC, the beginning of
the history of Ancient Rome.

The span of recorded history is roughly 5 000 – 5 500 years, with Sumerian
cuneiform being the oldest form of writing discovered so far.

Archaeology is the study of human cultures through the recovery,
documentation and analysis of material remains and environmental data,
including architecture, artifacts, biofacts, human remains, and landscapes.

The goals of archaeology are to document and explain the origins and
development of human culture, understand culture history, chronicle cultural
evolution, and study human behavior and ecology, for both prehistoric and
historic societies.

A commentary is provided by a person who offers reasoned judgment or
analysis, value judgment, interpretation, or observation. Commentaries are
books that focus systematically on one or more books of Scripture with
comments on the meaning of each verse and/or chapter. It often includes
other types of analysis and background material such as author, date, political
situation, etc.





A collection of maps showing Bible lands, regions, cities, journeys, or other
themes. May contain geographic features and political boundaries, many often
feature geopolitical, social, religious, and economic statistics.
An alphabetical list of the principal words used in the Bible, with their
immediate contexts. They often contain additional material, including
commentary on, or definitions of, the indexed words, and topical cross-

A topical concordance is a list of subjects that a book (usually the Bible)
covers, with the immediate context of the coverage of those subjects. Unlike a
traditional concordance, the indexed word does not have to appear in the
verse. For example, an entry for 'homosexuality' in a Biblical topical
concordance will list all the verses in the Bible that deal with the subject of
homosexuality, even if the word 'homosexual' doesn't actually appear in that
A dictionary is a list of Bible words and theological terms with their definitions,
a list of characters with their glyphs, or a list of words with corresponding
words in other languages. In some languages, words can appear in many
different forms, but only the lemma form appears as the main word or
headword in most dictionaries. Many dictionaries also provide pronunciation
information; grammatical information; word derivations, histories, or
etymologies; illustrations; usage guidance; and examples in phrases or
sentences. An encyclopedia is a written a concise yet comprehensive
compilation of knowledge.

A reference work is a compendium of information, usually of a specific type,
compiled in a book for ease of reference. That is, the information is intended
to be quickly found when needed. Reference works are usually referred to for
particular pieces of information, rather than read cover to cover. The writing
style used in these works is informative; the authors avoid use of the first
person, and emphasize facts. Indexes are commonly provided in many types
of reference work. Updated editions are published as needed, in some cases

Examples of reference works not listed in other categories include: almanac,
citation index, lexicon, gazetteer, mathematical tables, periodical index,
scientific tables, and thesaurus'.


A handbook overviews the entire Bible, book by book and in broad outline. It often includes author and context information and

Grammar is the study of rules governing the use of language. The set of rules
governing a particular language is also called the grammar of the language;
thus, each language can be said to have its own distinct grammar. Grammar is
part of the general study of language called linguistics.
The subfields of contemporary grammar are phonetics, phonology,
morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics. Traditional grammars include
only morphology and syntax.

A lexicon is usually a list of words together with additional word-specific
information. Lexicon is a word of Greek origin (λεξικόν) meaning vocabulary.
When linguists study the lexicon, they study such things as what words are,
how the vocabulary in a language is structured, how people use and store
words, how they learn words, the history and evolution of words, types of
relationships between words as well as how words were created.



A quotation is a fragment of a human expression that has been inserted into another human expression. It is most often a writte
Independent or small group studies of a biblical book or theme usually
containinig interactive discussion quesitons or having a fill-in-the-blank format.



Exegesis involves an extensive and critical interpretation of the Old and New
Testaments of the Bible. The word exegesis means "to draw the meaning out
of" a given text. In general, exegesis presumes an attempt to view the text
objectively. Traditional exegesis requires the following: analysis of significant
words in the text in regard to translation; examination of the general historical
and cultural context, confirmation of the limits of the passage, and lastly,
examination of the context within the text.

Hermeneutics is a philosophical technique concerned with the interpretation
and understanding of texts. It may be described as the theory of the
interpretation and understanding of a text on the basis of the text itself.

Biblical studies is the academic study of the Judeo-Christian Bible. Christianity
traditionally includes the New Testament and Old Testament, sometimes
called the "Scriptures." Biblical studies is a branch of theology, but also draws
on the disciplines of history, literary criticism, philology, and increasingly the
social sciences.


History is information about the biblical past. When used as the name of a field
of study, history refers to the study and interpretation of the record of humans,
families, and societies..

Culture generally refers to patterns of human activity and the symbolic
structures that give such activity significance. Different definitions of "culture"
reflect different theoretical bases for understanding, or criteria for evaluating,
human activity. The universal human capacity to classify, codify, and
communicate their experiences symbolically.
Jesus is the central figure of Christianity, in which context he is known as
Jesus Christ.
Christians believe that Jesus was born of a virgin, crucified and entombed,
resurrected on the third day of death, and ascended into Heaven where he
resides with God the Father until the Second Coming. Christians also believe
that Jesus fulfilled Biblical prophecy.

In Christianity, gospel means "good news". Gospel has generally been used in
two ways:
1. To denote the proclamation of God's saving activity in Jesus of Nazareth or
to denote the message proclaimed by Jesus of Nazareth.
2. More popularly to refer to the four canonical Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke
and John) that offer a narrative of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.

The Acts of the Apostles is a book of the Bible, the fifth in the New Testament.
It describes many of the journeys and actions taken by the apostles, meaning
"those who have been sent" by God, to be His witnesses. The book of Acts
contains many descriptions of miraculous events (which were given as signs
from God to validate the apostles' teachings), which were performed by the
Holy Spirit through the apostles. These included miraculous healings, casting
out evil spirits, and the raising of the dead. The narrative also contains

The New Testament (Καινή Διαθήκη), sometimes called the Greek Testament
or Greek Scriptures, and sometimes also New Covenant, is the name given to
the part of the Christian Bible that was written by various authors c. 48-140 AD
and gradually collected into a single volume over the next few centuries.
Messianic Judaism commonly refers to the New Testament as the B'rit
Chadashah, Hebrew for New Covenant, or the Apostolic Writings.
The New Testament is made up of twenty-seven separate works, these being
four narratives of Jesus Christ's ministry, called "Gospels;" a narrative of the
Apostles' ministry, which is also a sequel to the third Gospel; twenty-one early
letters, commonly called "epistles" in Biblical context, which were written by
various authors and consisted mostly of Christian counsel and instruction; and
an Apocalyptic prophecy, which is also technically the twenty-second epistle.
General Epistles
See main article: General Epistles
The General or Catholic Epistles are those written to the church at large
(Catholic in this sense simply means universal).
• Epistle of James - traditionally James, brother of Jesus and Jude Thomas;
actually anonymous
• First Epistle of Peter - traditionally the Apostle Simon, called Peter; actually
• Second Epistle of Peter - traditionally the Apostle Simon, called Peter;
actually anonymous
• First Epistle of John - traditionally the Apostle John, son of Zebedee; actually
• Second Epistle of John - traditionally the Apostle John, son of Zebedee;
actually anonymous
• Third Epistle of John - traditionally the Apostle John, son of Zebedee; actually




The Old Testament constitutes the first major part of the Bible according to
Christianity. It is usually divided into the categories of law, history, poetry (or
wisdom books) and prophecy. All of these books were written before the birth
of Jesus of Nazareth who is the subject of the subsequent Christian New
Testament. Traditional Christianity affirms that the laws or Torah of the Old
Testament is the word of God.




The Pauline epistles are the thirteen or fourteen letters in the New Testament
of the Christian Bible traditionally believed to have been written by the apostle
Paul. Among them are some of the earliest extant Christian documents. They
provide an insight into the beliefs and controversies of formative Christianity
and, as part of the canon of the New Testament, they have also been, and
continue to be, hugely influential in Christian theology and ethics.

The Pauline epistles are: Romans, First Corinthians, Second Corinthians,
Galatians, Ephesians,
Philippians, Colossians, First Thessalonians, Second Thessalonians, First
Timothy, Second Timothy, Titus, Philemon, and disputably, Hebrews.

Prophecy, in a broad sense, is the prediction of future events. It is also used
as a general term for the revelation of divine will. The Old Testament of the
Bible contains prophecies from various Hebrew prophets who foretold of their
people's trials and tribulations. The Book of Revelation in the New Testament
is accepted by many Christians as a prophecy related by its author, John the
Evangelist, of the events of the end times and Armageddon.

Christians believe that Jesus fulfilled many prophecies of the Old Testament,
thus proving he was the son of God, or messiah, and that he will return in the
future to fulfill other prophecies. In the New Testament, the stories of Jesus
telling a Samaritan woman about her life, or telling the apostles the future, are
examples of prophecy in the Christian tradition

Christians believe a prophet is a person who speaks for God, in the name of
God, and who carries God's message to others. For Christians, the
authenticity of a prophet is judged by their fruits as Jesus said that one should
judge a prophet by his fruits, (Gospel of Matthew 7) and by checking whether
his predictions come true. Deuteronomy 18:21-22 contains several warnings
about false prophets and is very specific about the test of whether a prophet is
true or false. A false prophet is considered to be someone who is purposely
trying to deceive, or is delusional, or is under the influence of Satan.
Wisdom literature is the a genre of literature is characterized by praise of God,
often in poetic form, and by sayings of wisdom intended to teach about God
and about virtue. The following Biblical books are classified as wisdom
literature: Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Songs (also known as
Song of Solomon).

Church administration consists of the performance or management of
transactions and other matters, and the making and implementing of major
decisions. Administration can be defined as the universal process of efficiently
organizing people and resources so to direct activities toward common goals
and objectives. Administration is both an art and a science as administrators
are judged ultimately by their performance. Church administrators, broadly
speaking, engage in a common set of functions to meet the organization's
goals. The act of planning, organizing, staffing, directing, coordinating,
reporting, and budgeting.

The term Christian Church expresses the idea that organised Christianity is
seen as an institution. The phrase "The Church" in its widest sense (as "the
Body of Christ") has a similar breadth.

Church Growth describes a wide movement within Christianity to aid and
encourage the spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Most advocates have a
real concern for the salvation of the individuals represented by the numbers.

Church planting is a process by which churches are begun in new areas.
Christian denominations such as Evangelicals view church planting as a
necessary adjunct to the work of evangelism. Churches do not necessarily
have to own their buildings, and many churches have been planted using
school or community halls, and even people's houses. Over the last century
there has been a great movement in the Christian faith to restore the New
Testament model of church planting.

A revival meeting is a series of Christian religious services held with an eye to
encourage active members of a religious body and to provoke those outside of
it to become part of it. Generally speaking, a revival meeting consists of
several consecutive nights of services conducted at the same time and
location each night, most often the building belonging to the sponsoring
congregation but sometimes a rented secular assembly hall, for more
adequate space or an attempt to appeal to the unchurched in a setting that will
presumably be less intimidating to them. Tents were very frequently employed
in this effort in the recent past, and occasionally still are, but less so due to the
difficulties in heating and cooling them and otherwise making them
comfortable, an increasing consideration with modern audiences.
Ecclesiastical history is the scientific investigation and the methodical
description of the temporal development of the Church considered as an
institution founded by Jesus Christ and guided by the Holy Spirit for the
salvation of mankind. Patristics (early church fathers) and hagiography (lives
of the saints) are an important aspect of church history.

In a general way the subject matter of history is everything that suffers change
owing to its existence in time and space; more particularly, however, it is the
genetic or natural development of facts, events, situations, that history

In a Christian context, stewardship refers to the responsibility that Christians
have in maintaining and using wisely the gifts that God has bestowed,
including the environment. In some settings, stewardship is operationalized as
time, talent and treasure. An example of stewardship is in Genesis 2:15. The
verse teaches that humans are responsible for nature.

In recent years, tithing has been taught in Christian circles as a form of
"stewardship" that God requires of Christians. The primary argument is that
God has never formally "abolished" the tithe, and thus Christians should pay
the tithe (usually calculated at 10 percent of all gross income from all sources),
usually to the local congregation (though some teach that a part of the tithe
can go to other Christian ministries, so long as total giving is at least 10

Giving, in the church context, can include generously giving of one’s time,
talent, and money for the benefit of the church.

Christian education proclaims God’s word as the source of wisdom and
knowledge through the social science of education. Education encompasses
teaching and learning specific knowledge, beliefs, and skills based on
Christian principles and beliefs. Christian education addresses teaching
practices and subjects including lectures, game playing, testing, scheduling,
record keeping, bullying, seating arrangements, interests, motivation,
computer access, and more.


Grief is a multi-faceted response to loss. Although conventionally focused on
the emotional response to loss, it also has a physical, cognitive, behavioral,
social and philosophical dimensions. Common to human experience is the
death of a loved one, be they friend, family, or other. While the terms are often
used interchangeably, bereavement often refers to the state of loss, and grief
to the reaction to loss. Losses can range from loss of employment, pets,
status, a sense of safety, order, possessions, to the loss of the people nearest
to us. Our response to loss is varied and researchers have moved away from
conventional views of grief (that is, that people move through an orderly and
predictable series of responses to loss) to one that considers the wide variety
of responses that are influenced by personality, family, culture, and spiritual
and religious beliefs and practices.

Devotion is a term used to designate several related activities within the
Christian church. Most frequently, this term refers to a period of time set aside
to study the Bible and pray in an effort to build a stronger spiritual relationship
with God. This time is often spent alone or with a small group of people.

Books contain directed Bible studies often incorporating stories or anecdotes
that convey Biblical principles, similar to the parables used by Jesus in his
ministry. The term also refers to an individual story or message that follows the
above format. Pastors and youth ministers who speak using stories as
opposed to sermons are said to be giving a "devotion(al)".

A family is a domestic group of people (or a number of domestic groups),
typically affiliated by birth or marriage, or by comparable legal relationships.
Family issues are addressed in the context of a relationship with Christ and
through biblical principles and teachings.

Parenting is the process of raising and educating a child from birth until
adulthood. This is usually done in a child's family by the mother and father (i.e.,
the biological parents). Where parents are unable or unwilling to provide this
care, it is usually taken on by close relatives (including older siblings) and
grandparents, adoptive parents, foster parents, godparents, or institutions
(such as group homes or orphanages).

The Christian life category focuses on the living out of one’s faith in Jesus
Christ, including the practical application of faith to specific areas and
responsibilities of life, the spiritual growth and development of personal
disciplines and practices that enhance one’s sense of God’s presence, and the
interacting with others in ways that glorify God and promote spiritual
Christian inspirational writing includes an attempt to persuade the reader to
incorporate principles of faith into his or her life. They motivate, encourage,
and promote biblical principles. The writings strive to benefit the reader
emotionally and spiritually. Often, inspirational writing includes novels, short
stories, Scripture quotations, or promises. They can be mixtures of memoirs,
life stories, or narrative prose. Books are sometimes organized around
subjects such as illness or get well. They are formatted with illustrations and
often differ in size compared to traditional books. Often these books are used
for gift giving.






Love can describe an intense feeling of affection, an emotion or an emotional
state. In ordinary use, it refers to interpersonal love.

Marriage is a relationship between individuals which has formed the foundation
of the family for most societies. Marriage can include legal, social, and
religious elements. In The Christian view of marriage has regarded marriage
as ordained by God for the lifelong union of a man and a woman. Included are
books dealing with the many facets of marital life and intimacy including issues
of growing healthy marriages, romance, and troubled marriages.

The Christian life of men creates unique topics of interest specifically for men.
Parenting and marriage issues focused on men's needs and intersts are

Personal growth comprises the development of the self. Referring to personal
development means a full and total transformation from deep within and not
just a temporary personality change for a specific occasion or context. There
are certain areas of life that are considered in personal growth. Mental
knowledge and learning, openness to new skill, self help, character, emotions,
physical health, fun and adventure, social circles, friends and clubs.

Psychology is an academic and applied field involving the study of the mind
and behavior, both human and nonhuman. Psychology also refers to the
application of such knowledge to various spheres of human activity, including
problems of individuals' daily lives and the treatment of mental illness.
Psychology involves studying the mental processes and behavior of individuals
(alone or in groups) rather than the behavior of the groups or aggregates.
Psychology is primarily concerned with the interaction of mental processes and
behavior and of the overall processes of a system.

The term self-help can refer to any case whereby an individual or a group,
such as a support group, betters themselves economically, intellectually or



Prayer is an effort to communicate with God either to offer praise, to make a request, or simply to express one's thou
Professional growth encompasses the developing of skills relevant to the one's
current occupation. Professional growth can include aspects of the career
such as job seeking, resume writing, time management, skill development,
and being a Christian in the workplace. Professional growth also includes
developing goals, work life, job matching, and job transitioning.

Professional growth can also includes business issues such as managing
people to organize and maintain collective productivity toward accomplishing
particular creative and productive goals. With some exceptions, businesses
are formed under the motivation of earning profit and growing personal wealth
of its members. Christians seek to balance the need to operate profitably with
biblical principles for business operation.

Leadership includes giving guidance or direction for the benefit of all. People
have come to expect transformational change stemming from the leader. Such
entities may encourage their followers and believers to respect leadership and
to strive to become proficient in it.

Christian counseling includes the entire ‘community of care,’ licensed
professionals, pastors, and caring church members with little or no formal
training. Books in this category are intended to equip clinical, pastoral, and lay
care-givers with Biblical truth and psycho-social insights that ministers to
hurting persons and helps them move to personal wholeness, interpersonal
competence, mental stability, and spiritual maturity.
Recovery is an ongoing process of yielding. Christians overcoming the
lingering affects of addiction, trauma, or abuse and moving into the fullness of
the abundant life is an involved, long-term process. Often support groups are
part of the recovery process. A support group is, first, a place where
recovering addicts will find true acceptance and a sense of what unconditional
love is all about. It is a safe, non-judgmental setting where they can express
struggles, thoughts, ideas, and feelings without fear of rejection. Hearing the
stories of others with similar difficulties and how they overcame them, gives
the struggling addict great encouragement to go on in a life of sobriety. Healthy
support groups can provide a sort of "family" atmosphere that stimulates the
hope for a better life in all involved. Because addiction wreaks havoc upon an
Interpersonal relationships are social associations, connections, or affiliations
between two or more people. They vary in differing levels of intimacy and
sharing, implying the discovery or establishment of common ground, and may
be centered around something(s) shared in common.

In many traditional societies, courtship is a highly structured activity, with well-
known rules. In many cultures, courtship is made redundant, or eliminated
altogether, by the practice of arranged marriages, where partners are chosen
for young people, typically by their parents. In some societies, the parents or
community choose potential partners, and then allow limited dating to
determine whether the parties are suited.

In Western societies, a date is an occasion when one socializes with a
potential spouse. In this sense, the purpose of a date is for the people dating
to get to know each other and decide whether they want to have a relationship.
Dating may be the term describing the relationship of two people attending a
date, but other terms are often used.

Divorce or dissolution of marriage is the ending of a marriage before the death
of either spouse, which can be contrasted with an annulment which is a
declaration that a marriage is void, though the effects of marriage may be
recognized in such unions, such as spousal support, child custody
and distribution of property.






Social issues are matters that can be explained only by factors outside an individual’s control and immediate social environmen
Spirituality is, in a narrow sense, a concern with matters of the spirit. The
spiritual concerns eternal verities regarding Man's ultimate nature. It may
include belief in supernatural powers, as in religion, but the emphasis is on
personal experience. It may be an expression for life perceived as higher,
more complex or more integrated with one's worldview, as contrasted with the
merely sensual. Spirituality in religion connotes the nature of a believer's
personal relationship or "connection" with their God.

One aspect of 'Being spiritual' is goal-directed, with aims such as:
simultaneously improve one's wisdom and willpower, achieve a closer
connection to God, and remove illusions or false ideas at the sensory, feeling
and thinking aspects of a person. Others say that spirituality is a two-stroke
process: the "upward stroke" is inner growth, changing oneself as one
changes his/her relationship with God, and the "downward stroke" is
manifesting improvements in the physical reality around oneself as a result of
the inward change. Another connotation is that change will come onto itself
with the realization that all is oneself; whereupon the divine inward manifests
the diverse outward for experience and progress.

Mysticism is the philosophy and practice of a direct experience of God. In the
Christian context it is traditionally practiced through pursuit of the three




Spiritual warfare has been understood as a metaphor that broadly covers the
individual Christian's struggle with sin and temptation. Spiritual conflict (less
than "war") exists throughout Christian thought and practices (e.g. prayer).
However, since the late Twentieth century, the term spiritual warfare has been
popularized in such a way that it is frequently equated with the interaction of
persons with the angelic and demonic realms in positive or negative ways (e.g.
The Christian life of women creates unique topics of interest specifically for
women. Parenting and marriage issues focused on women's needs and
intersts are included.


A religious ministry is a specialized activity or set of activities performed by a
religious organization in addition to standard church services. The term
"ministry" can also apply to the collected activities of a religious group such as
a church or an individual ministry, as listed below. As churches attempt to
meet the needs of their congregations, they often separate their members into
groups according to age categories. Age-specific groups meet for religious
study including Sunday school programs, fellowship, and other activities.

These ministries allow churches to provide 'age-appropriate' activities and
content to maximize spiritual education and growth as well as peer group
fellowship. In terms of religious education, the 'socialization' of children into the
faith community is one important approach that requires connecting the
children and family with the wider congregation.



A disciple is one who receives instruction from another; a scholar; a learner;
especially, a follower who has learned to believe in the truth of the doctrine of
his teacher, and implies that the pupil is under the discipline of, and
"understands", his teacher; an adherent in doctrine.[1]
In many versions of Christian theology, discipleship is used to refer to the
decision to become a committed follower of the teachings of Jesus. Jesus
taught that "as I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this
everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John
13:34-35, TNIV).

Evangelism is the preaching of the Christian Gospel or, by extension, any
other form of preaching or proselytizing. For many groups, a church planter is
called an evangelist. Sometimes, the regular minister of a church is called an
evangelist in a way that other groups would typically use the term pastor.
Focus on evangelism and the drawing-in of new converts.

Outreach is an effort by an organization or group to connect its ideas or
practices to the efforts of other organizations, groups, specific audiences or
the general public. Unlike marketing, outreach does not inherently revolve
around a product or strategies to increase market share. Typically non-profits,
civic groups, and churches engage in outreach.

Outreach often takes on an educational component (i.e., the dissemination of
ideas), but it is increasingly common for organizations to conceive of their
outreach strategy as a two-way street. In this case outreach is also framed as
engagment, rather than simple dissemination/education.
Outreach strategies are linked to the organization's mission, and define
targets, goals, and milestones.


A religious ministry is a specialized activity or set of activities performed by a
religious organization in addition to standard church services. The term
"ministry" can also apply to the collected activities of a religious group such as
a church or an individual ministry, as listed below.
As churches attempt to meet the needs of their congregations, they often
separate their members into groups according to age categories. Age-specific
groups meet for religious study including Sunday school programs, fellowship,
and other activities. These age divisions may include:
• Nursery
• Pre-school
• Children, generally elementary age students
• Youth, generally middle and high school students
• College and career, designed for university-age students
• Adults, which is often broken up into single adults, couples ministry, men's
and women's ministries, and senior adults.
Advantages and disadvantages
There are several advantages to the concept of age-specific ministries.
• Many parents / caregivers are glad to allow the church to be in charge of the
spiritual enrichment of their children. Similarly, they are used to using
programs for the development of their children such as weekday childcare,
preschool, and grade school and enjoy the ability to continue a similar format
in church.
• These ministries allow churches to provide 'age-appropriate' activities and
content to maximize spiritual education and growth as well as peer group
• Ministries often provide fellowship activities outside of the church service that
encourage the involvement of non-church going friends and relatives.
Age-specific ministry does have certain disadvantages, mostly stemming from
the separation of children from the primary church functions.







Since the Lausanne Congress of 1974, a widely-accepted definition of a
Christian mission has been "to form a viable indigenous church-planting
movement." This definition is motivated by theological analyses of the acts
required to enhance God's reputation (usually translated as "glory" or "honor").
The definition is claimed to summarize the acts of Jesus' ministry, which is
taken as a model for all ministries. The motivation is said to be God's will,
plainly stated throughout the Bible, including the Old Testament (see below).
The movement must "plant" (start) churches because the process of forming
Godly disciples is necessarily social. "Church" should be understood in the
widest sense, as an organization of believers. It is not a building. Many
churches start by meeting in houses. Discipling is required to grow the number
of believers to the largest extent, and maximize their quality and therefore the
acceptability of their worship to God and non-Christians.
"Viable" means that it is self-governing, self-supporting and self-propagating.
This is the famous "three-self" formula invented by Henry Venn of the London
Church Missionary Society in the 19th century.
"Indigenous" means that fully native members of the culture have all the
needed abilities and accept all the required duties. Only indigenes can fully
adapt the Gospel to their culture, maximizing both natural, high-quality worship
and the number of people that can be reached in that culture.
It must be a "movement," because special organization is required for the task
of planting churches. This movement naturally forms cross-cultural missions,



Are sermons and preaching together? Should they be? A sermon is an oration
by a prophet or member of the clergy. Sermons address a Biblical, theological,
or religious topic, usually expounding on a type of belief or law.

Sermons are usually, but not always, delivered in a house of worship, most of
which have a pulpit or ambo, an elevated architectural feature from which
sermons are given. Sermons are occasionally known as homilies, especially in
the Roman Catholic Church and similar traditions. The word "sermon" comes
from a Middle English word which was derived from an Old French term, which
in turn came from the Latin word sermō; ("discourse"). (Actually, it meant
"conversation", and early sermons were delivered in the form of question and
answer, only later did it come to mean a monologue)
In modern language, the word "sermon" can also be used pejoratively in
secular terms to describe a lengthy or tedious speech delivered with great
passion to a disinterested audience. A sermonette is a short sermon.
Preacher is a colloquial term for a clergyman, in particular a local priest, pastor
or Minister; one who preaches. Some believe a preacher is distinct from a
theologian by focusing on the communication of the doctrine rather than the
development of the doctrine. Others see preaching and theology as being
intertwined. Preaching is not limited to religious views, but it extends to moral
and social world-views as well. Preachers are common throughout most
cultures. They can take the form of a Christian "Reverend" on a Sunday
A sermon is an oration by a prophet or member of the clergy. Sermons
address a Biblical, theological, or religious topic, usually expounding on a type
of belief or law.
Sermons are usually, but not always, delivered in a house of worship, most of
which have a pulpit or ambo, an elevated architectural feature from which
sermons are given. Sermons are occasionally known as homilies, especially in
the Roman Catholic Church and similar traditions. The word "sermon" comes
from a Middle English word which was derived from an Old French term, which
in turn came from the Latin word sermō; ("discourse"). (Actually, it meant
"conversation", and early sermons were delivered in the form of question and
answer, only later did it come to mean a monologue)
In modern language, the word "sermon" can also be used pejoratively in
secular terms to describe a lengthy or tedious speech delivered with great
passion to a disinterested audience. A sermonette is a short sermon.
There are a number of different types of preaching, that differ both by their
subject matter and by their intended audience. Not all types of preaching are
within the gift of every preacher. These types of preaching include:
• Topical preaching - concerned with a particular subject of current concern;
• Biographical preaching - tracing the story of a particular biblical character
through a number of parts of the Bible;
• Evangelistic preaching - seeking to convert the congregation or bring them
back to their previous faith through a recounting of the Good News;
• Expository preaching - exegesis, or preaching from a text and seeking to
expound the text to the congregation;
• Redemptive-Historical Preaching - Preaching that takes into consideration
the context of any given text within the broader history of salvation as recorded
in the canon of the bible.
Delivery methods
Sermons also differ on the amount of time and effort used to prepare them.
• Scripted preaching - preaching with a previous preparation, it can be with
help of notes or a script, or rely on the memory of the preacher.
• Extemporaneous preaching - preaching without notes and sometimes without

A liturgy comprises a prescribed religious ceremony, according to the
traditions of a particular religion; it may refer to, or include, an elaborate formal
ritual (such as the Catholic Mass), or a daily activity such as the Muslim Salats
(see Oxford Dictionary of World Religions, p.582-3). The unprogrammed
meeting of Quakers in The United States is an example of a non-liturgical
service because there is no minister or structured order of events.

Methods of dress, preparation of food, application of cosmetics or other
hygienic practices are all considered liturgic activities. Liturgies are natural and
common in all human activities such as organized sports venues. They appear
to resonate with human salutory needs.

In the Christian church, liturgical churches are those that use a well-defined
liturgy dating to the second century and earlier, in which many of the words
and music used follow basic patterns each time the service is conducted. Most
Orthodox, Catholic, Anglican, and Lutheran churches are liturgical while most
others are to a far lesser extent. So-called non-liturgical churches usually do
follow a common worship sequence from one service to the next, but identical
elements are few.

A ritual is a set of actions, performed mainly for their symbolic value, which is
prescribed by a religion or by the traditions of a community.
A ritual may be performed at regular intervals, or on specific occasions, or at
the discretion of individuals or communities. It may be performed by a single
individual, by a group, or by the entire community; in arbitrary places, or in
places especially reserved for it; either in public, in private, or before specific
people. A ritual may be restricted to a certain subset of the community, and
may enable or underscore the passage between religious or social states.
The purposes of rituals are varied; they include compliance with religious
obligations or ideals, satisfaction of spiritual or emotional needs of the
practitioners, strengthening of social bonds, demonstration of respect or
submission, stating one's affiliation, obtaining social acceptance or approval
for some event — or, sometimes, just for the pleasure of the ritual itself.
Rituals of various kinds are a feature of almost all known human societies,
past or present. They include not only the various worship rites and
sacraments of organized cults and religions, but also the rites of passage of
certain societies, oaths of allegiance, coronations, and presidential
inaugurations, marriages and funerals, school "rush" traditions and
graduations, club meetings, sports events, halloween parties and veteran
parades, Christmas shopping, and more.
In any case, an essential feature of a ritual is that the actions and their
symbolism are not arbitrarily chosen by the performers, nor dictated by logic or
necessity, but are, at least in part, prescribed and imposed upon the
A sacrament is a Christian rite that mediates divine grace—a holy mystery.
In the Western tradition, it is often defined as an outward, visible sign that
conveys an inward, spiritual grace.
The Latin word sacramentum had its origin as the oath of allegiance taken by
Roman soldiers; hence, a sacred ceremony used to impress an obligation; a
solemn oath-taking; an oath.
Among many Protestants, the word mediates or conveys would mean only that
it is a visible symbol or reminder of invisible grace.
Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox Christians, the Oriental Orthodox,
Assyrian Christians, members of the Anglican, United Methodist, and Old
Catholic traditions, the Independent Catholic Churches and Lutherans hold
that sacraments are not mere symbols, but rather, "signs or symbols which
effect what they signify", that is, the sacraments in and of themselves, rightly
administered, are used by God as a means to communicate grace to faithful
Generally, there are seven sacramental rites used since apostolic times in the
Church, though not all of them are accepted as such by all groups. These are:
Baptism, Chrismation (or Confirmation), the Eucharist (Communion), The
Sacrament of Order (Ordination), Reconciliation of a Penitent, Anointing of the
Angelology is a branch of theology that deals with a hierarchical system of
angels, messengers, celestial powers or emanations, and the study of these
systems. It primarily relates Christianity[1], where it is one of the ten major
branches of theology, albeit a neglected one[2].
In the New Testament angels appear frequently as the ministers of God and
the agents of revelation (E.g. Matthew 1:20 (to Joseph), 4:11. (to Jesus), Luke
1:26 (to Mary), Acts 12:7 (to Peter)); and Jesus speaks of angels as fulfilling
such functions (E.g. Mark 8:38, 13:27), implying in one saying that they neither
marry nor are given in marriage (Mark 12:25). Angels are most prominent in
the Apocalypse. The New Testament takes little interest in the idea of the
angelic hierarchy, but there are traces of the doctrine. The distinction of good
and bad angels is recognized, with the good angels Gabriel (Luke 1:19),
Metatron (Rev. 10:1), and Michael (Daniel 12:1), and the evil angels
Beelzebub, (Mark 3:22) Satan (Mark 1:13), and Apollyon (Rev. 9:11); ranks
are implied, archangels (Michael, Jude 9), principalities and powers (Rom.
8:38; Col. 2:10), thrones and dominions (Col 1:16). Angels occur in groups of
four or seven (Rev 7:1). The Angels of the Seven Churches of Asia Minor are
described in Rev. 1-3. These are probably guardian angels, standing to the
churches in the same relation that the angel-princes in Daniel stand to the
nations; practically the angels are personifications of the churches.
The archangel Gabriel appeared to Mary in the traditional role of messenger to
inform her that her child would be the Messiah, and other angels were present
to herald his birth. In Matt. 28:2, an angel appeared at Jesus' tomb, frightened
the Roman guards, rolled away the stone from the tomb, and later told the
myrrh-bearing women of Jesus' resurrection. Alternately, in Mark 16:5, the
angel is not seen until the women enter the already-opened tomb, and he is
described simply as "a young man." In Luke's version of the resurrection tale
(Luke 24:4), two angels suddenly appear next to the women within the tomb;
they are described as being clothed in "shining apparel." This is most similar to
Anthropology (from the Greek word άνθπωπορ, "human" or "person") consists
of the study of humanity (see genus Homo). It is holistic in two senses: it is
concerned with all humans at all times and with all dimensions of humanity. A
primary trait that traditionally distinguished anthropology from other humanistic
disciplines is an emphasis on cultural relativity, in-depth examination of
context, andis the field of study concerned with the systematic defense of a
Apologetics cross-cultural comparisons.
position. Someone who engages in apologetics is called an apologist or an
"apologete". Religious apologetics is the effort to show that the preferred faith
is not irrational, that believing in it is not against human reason, and that in fact
the religion contains values and promotes ways of life more in accord with
human nature than other faiths or beliefs.
Apologetics serves an intellectual function within religious communities by
providing arguments that support the doctrinal and ethical tenets of the
religion. These arguments strengthen the believer's faith and support the
propagation of the religion by offering arguments intended to persuade the
Skeptics engaged in debate with apologists tend to expect apologetics to
consist of powerful arguments intended to persuade skeptics. The
effectiveness of these arguments can occasionally fail to meet skeptical
anticipation, largely because the arguments are not always directed to
skeptics, but have the stated purpose of reaffirming the beliefs of current
believers. These arguments aim for a much lower burden, not trying to do
more than make the religious belief plausible or cast doubt on skeptical
This faith-affirming aspect is often downplayed or even overlooked, but it can
be very important, particularly in psychological and sociological terms. For
some, the mere fact that even superficially reasonable arguments exist in
support of their beliefs suffices to prevent them from making any effort at all to
question whether they should continue to believe. For others, the ready-made
arguments allow simplified defense of beliefs, sometimes to the detriment of
intellectual debate. In the case of so-called true believers, more far-fetched
arguments may replace traditional logic. This is consistent with the
observations of sociologists of religion, such as Peter Berger and Douglas
Cowan, who found that boundary maintenance of belief occurs when one
religious tradition encounters another. In this view, engaging in apologetics is
less about converting others than boosting their own faith.
There are a variety of Christian apologetic styles and schools of thought. In the
Thomistic or Classical apologetics tradition philosophical arguments for God's
Christology is that part of Christian theology that studies and defines who
Jesus the Christ was and is. It is generally less concerned with the minor
details of his life; rather it deals with who he was, the incarnation, and the
major events of his life (his birth, death, and resurrection).
Important issues in Christology include:
• His human nature
• His divine nature
• The interrelationship between these two natures; how they interacted and
affected each other
Christology may also cover questions concerning the nature of God like the
Trinity, Unitarianism or Binitarianism, and what, if anything, Christ
accomplished for the rest of humanity. There are almost as many
Christological views as there are variants of Christianity. The different
Christological views of various Christian sects have led to accusations of
heresy, and, infrequently, subsequent religious persecution. In many cases, a
sect's unique christology is its chief distinctive feature; in these cases it is
common for the sect to be known by the name given to its christology.
Controversies concerning those who deny Christ's divine nature
Some important controversies have included the controversy with Arians over
Christ's divinity and relationship with the Father, which led to the adoption of
the Nicene-Constantinople Creed; the controversy over Nestorianism, and that
over Monophysitism (and its derivates Monothelitism and Monoenergism)
which led to the first Seven Ecumenical Councils and their many decrees,
canons and professions of faith. The adoption of the Chalcedonian view of
Christology was, as Karl Rahner would say, key to the beginning of
Christological Discussion. Other controversies in Christology included the
Docetists and the Adoptionists.
We can describe most of these in terms of whether they believed Christ had a
divine nature, human nature or both; and if both, in terms of how the two
natures coexisted or interacted. All of these views will be presented in
simplified form.
One of the earliest dispute within Christianity centered on whether Jesus was
God. A number of early Christian sects believed that Jesus was not divine, but
Ecclesiology is a branch of Christian theology that deals with the doctrines
pertaining to the Church itself as a community or organic entity, and with the
understanding of what the "church" is: its role in salvation, its origin, its
relationship to the historical Christ, its discipline, its destiny (see Eschatology)
and its leadership. It is, therefore, the study of the Church as a thing in itself,
and of the Church's self-understanding of its mission and role.
In addition to describing a broad discipline of theology, ecclesiology may be
used in the specific sense of a particular church or denomination’s character,
self-described or otherwise. This is the sense of the word in such phrases as
Roman Catholic ecclesiology, Lutheran ecclesiology, and ecumenical
Ecclesiology asks the questions:
• Who is the Church? Is it a visible or earthly corporation -- a "church" in the
sense of a specific denomination or institution, for instance? Or is it the body of
all believing Christians regardless of their denominational differences and
disunity? What is the relationship between living Christians and departed
Christians -- do they (those on Earth and those in Heaven) constitute together
the Church?
• Must one join a church? That is, what is the role of corporate worship in the
spiritual lives of believers? Is it in fact necessary? Can salvation be found
outside of formal membership in a given faith community, and what constitutes
• What is the authority of the Christian church? Is the institution itself, either in
a single corporate body, or generally, an independent vehicle of revelation or
of God's grace? Or is the Church's authority dependent on and derivative of a
prior divine revelation, and individual institutions are the Church to the extent
Eschatology is a part of theology and philosophy concerned with the final
events in the history of the world or the ultimate destiny of human kind,
commonly phrased as the end of the world. In many religions, the end of the
world is a future event prophesied in sacred texts or folklore. More broadly,
eschatology may encompass related concepts such as the Messiah or
Messianic Age, the afterlife, and the soul.
The Greek word αιών means "age"; some translations may read "end of the
age" instead of "end of the world". The distinction also has theological
significance, for the "end times" in many religions may involve the destruction
of the planet (or of all living things), but with the human race surviving in some
new form, ending the current "age" of existence and beginning a new one.
Most Western monotheistic religions have doctrines claiming that 'chosen' or
'worthy' members of the one true faith will be "spared" or "delivered" from the
coming judgment and wrath of God. They will be ushered into paradise either
before, during, or after it depending upon the end-time scenario to which they
hold. As well as the wrath of God at the end of the age there is the wrath of
Christians in the 1st century AD believed the end of the world would come
during their lifetime. Jesus in Mark 13:8 compared the end of the world with a
mother's birth pain, and the image implied the world was already pregnant with
its own destruction, but no one but God knows when it will happen. When the
converts of Paul in Thessalonica were persecuted by the Roman Empire, they
Ethics is the branch of axiology, one of the four major branches of philosophy,
which attempts to understand the nature of morality; to distinguish that which
is right from that which is wrong. The Western tradition of ethics is sometimes
called moral philosophy.
Ethics is a branch of philosophy dealing with right and wrong in human
behavior. All religions have a moral component, and religious approaches to
the problem of ethics historically dominated ethics over secular approaches.
From the point of view of theistic religions, to the extent that ethics stems from
revealed truth from divine sources, ethics is studied as a branch of theology.
Many believe that the Golden Rule, which teaches people to "treat others as
you want to be treated", is the common denominator of all moral codes and
Christian ethics developed while early Christians were subjects of the Roman
Empire. Christians eventually took over the Empire itself. Saint Augustine
adapted Plato, and later, after the Islamic transmission of his works, Aquinas
worked Aristotelian philosophy into a Christian framework.
Christian ethics in general has tended to stress grace, mercy, and forgiveness;
it stresses doubt in human (as opposed to divine) judgment. It also codified the
Seven Deadly Sins. For more see Christian philosophy and the Seven virtues.
Theology is reasoned discourse concerning God. his moral refer the hearts
Paul teaches (Rom., ii, 24 ff) that God has written It can alsolaw in to the study
of other religious topics. A theologian is a person learned in theology.
Christian theology practices theology from a Christian viewpoint or studies
Christianity theologically. Given the overwhelming influence exercised by
Christianity, especially in pre-modern Europe, Christian theology permeates
much of Western culture and often reflects that culture.
The history of Christian theology intertwines with Church history and covers
important developments in philosophy and in the history of ideas. Specific
issues such as heresy, Arianism, and the Protestant Reformation are of
particular importance.
Doctrine means "a body of teachings" or "instructions", taught principles or
positions, as the body of teachings in a branch of knowledge or belief system.
The Greek analogy is the etymology of catechism.
Often doctrine specifically connotes a corpus of religious dogma as it is
promulgated by a church, but not necessarily: doctrine is also used to refer to
a principle of law, in the common law traditions, established through a history
of past decisions, such as the doctrine of self-defense, or the principle of fair
use, or the more narrowly applicable first-sale doctrine.
Examples of religious doctrines include:
• Christian Trinity and virgin birth
• Roman Catholic transubstantiation and immaculate conception
• Pentecostal Jesus-Only doctrine
• Calvinist predestination
• Methodist Prevenient Grace

Dogma (the plural is either dogmata or dogmas) is belief or doctrine held by a
religion, ideology or any kind of organization to be authoritative and not to be
disputed or doubted.
There are some conceptual similarities between dogma and the axioms used
as the starting point for logical analysis. Axioms may be thought of as
concepts or "givens" so fundamental that disputing them would be
unimaginable; dogmata are also fundamental (e.g. "God exists") yet
incorporate also the larger set of conclusions that comprise the (religious) field




Earliest emergence of Christianity
Debatably and Biblically speaking, Christianity began with the Messianic
promise (Genesis 3:15) at the dawn of creation and therefore with Adam and
Eve, the first people with faith in the Messiah (Christ) to come. It then follows
the history of those peoples, mostly the Jewish "nation", who kept that faith.
The term "Christian" itself is however not really recognized until the first
century AD at Antioch as recorded in Acts 11:26.
By way of secular history, Christianity began among a small number (about
120, see Acts 1:15) of Jews and Jewish Proselytes. By the 3rd century AD,
Christianity had grown to become the dominant religion of the northern
Mediterranean world. It also gained important extensions to the east and south
of the Mediterranean. The core history of the Roman Catholic Church is said to
extend in an unbroken timeline from this period. This section will examine
those first 300 years.
Earliest Church
Main article: Early Christianity
The term "Early Jewish Christians" is often used in discussing Early
Christianity. Jesus, his Twelve Apostles, his relatives, the Elders, and all or
essentially all of his early followers were Jewish or Jewish Proselytes. Hence
the 3,000 converts on the Pentecost following the Crucifixion described in Acts
2 were all Jews and Proselytes. All converts to Christianity were non-Gentile
prior to the conversion of the Roman Centurion Cornelius by Simon Peter
(Kephas) in Acts 10, who is traditionally considered the first Gentile convert to
Liberation theology is an important, sometimes controversial school of
theological thought. At its inception, it was predominently found in the Roman
Catholic Church after the Second Vatican Council; although some suggest that
it was first articulated by Dietrich Bonhoeffer during the late 1930s. It is often
cited as a form of Christian socialism, and it has had particularly widespread
influence in Latin America and among the Jesuits, although its influence has
diminished within Catholicism in the past decade. Though important parts of its
teachings were rejected by the Vatican, curtailing its growth in some sectors,
within Protestant circles it is recognized as an important school of thought, of
equal standing with neo-Orthodoxy, Feminist Theology, Process Theology,
and others.
The current Pope, Benedict XVI, has also been long known as an opponent of
liberation theology, when he headed the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine
of the Faith.
In essence, liberation theology explores the relationship between Christian
theology (usually Catholic) and political activism, particularly in areas of social
justice, poverty, and human rights. The main methodological innovation of
liberation theology is to do theology (i.e. speak of God) from the viewpoint of
the economically poor and oppressed of the human community. According to
In Christian theology, pneumatology refers to the study of the Holy Spirit. In
mainstream Christian doctrine, the Holy Spirit is the third person of God in the
Trinity. Unitarian forms of Christianity deny that the Holy Spirit is personal,
although holding that it may, in some sense, influence people. In the Gospel of
John, pneuma is linked to re-birth in water and spirit, which has been
suggested to be baptism.
Salvation refers to deliverance from an undesirable state or condition. In
theology, the study of salvation is called soteriology and is a vitally important
concept in several religions. Christianity regards salvation as deliverance from
the bondage of sin and from condemnation, resulting in eternal life with God.
Salvation is arguably one of the most important Christian spiritual concepts,
perhaps second only to the deity of Jesus Christ.
Among many Christians, the primary goal of religion is to attain salvation.
Others maintain that the primary goal of Christians is to do the will of God, or
that the two are equivalent. In many traditions, attaining salvation is
synonymous with going to heaven after death, while most also emphasize that
salvation represents a changed life while on Earth as well. Many elements of
Christian theology explain why salvation is needed and how to attain it.
The idea of salvation rests upon there being some sort of unsaved sinful state
from which the individual (or mankind) is to be redeemed by a Savior. This
Savior, Christians believe, is Jesus Christ.
For the Catholic Church, salvation is not just a negative deliverance from sin
(original sin and actual sin) and its effects: God saves us not just from
something, but for something. God’s action is a positive liberation that raises
human beings to a supernatural status, to eternal life on a higher plane than
earthly life, to union in a single body with Christ, one of the three Persons of
the Trinity, to the dignity of not only being called but actually being adopted
children of God, to seeing God "as he is" (1 John 3:2) in communion of life and
love with the Trinity and all the saints (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1023-
1025, 1243, 1265-1270, 2009).
These blessings man could never merit. Indeed, in the strict sense, man can
never merit anything from God: the creature has received everything, including
abilities and potentialities, from the Creator. The possibility of meriting anything
in the eyes of God derives entirely from a free gift or grace of God. Salvation
or justification can by no means be merited, but once God has justified us, we
can then, through the influence of the Holy Spirit and love, merit graces useful
for sanctification, for growth in grace and love and for reaching the eternal life
for which God destines us. We can merit even material benefits, such as
health and friendship (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2006-2011).
Systematic theology is the study of Christian theology organized thematically
(as opposed to historically, as in Historical Theology or Biblical Theology -
according to some uses of the latter term).
There are three overlapping uses of the term 'systematic theology' in
contemporary theology.
• In evangelical circles, it is used to refer to the topical collection and
exploration of the content of the Bible, in which a different perspective is
provided on the Bible's message than that garnered simply by reading the
biblical narratives, poems, proverbs, and letters as a story of redemption or as
a manual for how to live a godly life. One advantage of this approach is that it
allows one to see all that the Bible says regarding some subject (e.g. the
attributes of God), and one danger is a tendency to assign technical definitions
to terms based on a few passages and then read that meaning everywhere the
term is used in the Bible (e.g. "justification" as Paul uses it in his letter to the
Romans is different from how James uses it in his letter).
• The term can also be used to refer to theology which self-avowedly seeks to
perpetuate the classical traditions of thematic exploration of theology
described above - often by means of commentary upon the classics of those
tradition: Damascus, Aquinas, Calvin, Melanchthon and others.
• Normally (but not exclusively) in liberal theology, the term can be used to
refer to attempts to follow in Schleiermacher's footsteps, and reinterpret
Christian theology in order to derive it from a core set of axioms or principles.
• Topics often covered in systematic theology are: God, revelation, creation
and providence, Theological Anthropology, Theodicy, Christology, soteriology,
church, sacraments, Pneumatology, Christian life, Heaven, and other religions.
Sin has been a term most usually used in a religious context, and today
describes any lack of conformity to the will of God; especially, any willful
disregard for the norms revealed by God is a sin. The word is from the old
English synn, presumed to be from Germanic *sun(d)jō (literally "it is true"). [1]
It is recorded in use as early as the 9th century. The most common formal
definition is an infraction against religious or moral law. Colloquially, any
thought, word, or act considered faulty, shameful, harmful to oneself or to


Catholicism has two main ecclesiastical meanings, described in Webster's
Dictionary as: (1) "the whole orthodox Christian church, or adherence thereto";
and (2) "the doctrines or faith of the Roman Catholic Church, or adherence
thereto." 1
The term Catholicism, derived from the Greek adjective καθολικόρ
(katholikos), meaning "general" or "universal", is widely understood to refer to
the Church, governed by the Bishop of Rome and the bishops in communion
with him. However, other Churches that trace their historic episcopate to the
apostolic succession — such as the Oriental Orthodox Churches, the Eastern
Orthodox Churches, the Assyrian Church of the East, the Churches of the
Anglican Communion, and the Old-Catholics — consider themselves to be
branches of the Catholic Church. Neo-Lutheranism argues that Lutheran
Churches are simply a Protestant reform movement that remains within the
greater Church catholic.
Catholic Churches share certain essential distinctive beliefs and practices
(though some Anglicans and Lutherans differ in regard to emphasis and
particular pieties):
• Papal Infallibility (Only the Roman Catholic Church)
• Direct and continuous organizational descent from the original church
founded by Jesus (see e.g. Mt 16:18).
• Possession of the "threefold ordained ministry" of Bishops, Priests and
• All ministers are ordained by, and subject to, Bishops, who pass down
sacramental authority by the "laying-on of hands", having themselves been
ordained in a direct line of succession from the Apostles (see Apostolic
• Belief that the Church is the vessel and deposit of the fullness of the
teachings of Jesus and the Apostles from which the Scriptures were formed.
This teaching is preserved in both written Scripture and in unwritten Tradition,
neither being independent of the other.
• A belief in the necessity of sacraments (generally counted as seven).
• The use of sacred images, candles, vestments and music, and often incense

Christian literature is writing that deals Christian themes. This constitutes a
huge body of extremely varied writing.
Letters, theological treatises and other instructive and devotional works have
been produced by Christian authors since the times of Jesus. For early
Christian times almost all writing would be non-fiction, including letters, biblical
commentaries, doctrinal works and hagiography. See Patristics.
Since the invention of the printing press non-fictional literature has been used
for the dissemination of the Christian message, and also for disseminating
different viewpoints within Christianity. The tract (a small pamphlet containing
an explanation of some point, or an appeal to the reader) was in use at the
time of the Reformation and continues to be used as a part of proselytization.
Christian art is art that spans many segments of Christianity. Per each
religious sect, art mediums, style, and representations change; however, the
unifying theme is ultimately the representation of the life and times of Jesus
Christ and in some cases the Old Testament.
Each Christian religious sect has its own rules defining what is an appropriate
way to represent the life and times of Jesus. Differences between mediums
and style can typically be attributed to various interpretations of the Bible (the
leading Christian religious text) and local cultural influences.
Traditional Christian art mediums include architecture (cathedral, church),
iconography (icon, painting, fresco, mosaic), sculpture (Byzantine ivory
statues, Catholic plague columns), wood carving, manuscript miniature, and
stained glass.
A work of Christian art, whatever the medium, usually portrays a specific
person or religious event. Each masterpiece usually presents symbolism
native to that religious sect. There is no unifying or defining "Christian" symbol;
for example, the Christian Cross does not look the same throughout Christian
denominations, nor is the Bible the same work of literature for each sect.
However, the following are general symbols that are replete throughout most
Christian works:
• Jesus : the central individual in Christianity : Images of Jesus
• The Christian cross: represents the life, death, and the resurrection of Jesus
Christ as well as human salvation because of His sacrifice


The word orthodoxy, from the Greek ortho ('right', 'correct') and doxa
('thought', 'teaching' , 'Glorification'), is typically used to refer to the correct
theological or doctrinal observance of religion, as determined by some
overseeing body. The term did not conventially exist with any degree of
formality (in the sense in which it is now used) prior to the advent of
Christianity in the Greek-speaking world, though the word does occasionally
show up in ancient literature in other, somewhat similar contexts. Orthodoxy is
opposed to heterodoxy ('other teaching'), heresy and schism. People who
deviate from orthodoxy by professing a doctrine considered to be false are
most often called heretics, while those who deviate from orthodoxy by
removing themselves from the perceived body of believers, i.e. from full
communion, are called schismatics. Not infrequently these occur together. The
distinction in terminology pertains to the subject matter; if one is addressing
corporate unity, the emphasis may be on schism; if one is addressing doctrinal
coherence, the emphasis may be on heresy.
Derived from late classical and medieval Christian apologetics for orthodoxy,
more specifity is often applied when defending a claim to orthodoxy or refuting
heresy. Apostasy, for example is a violation of orthodoxy that takes the form of
abandonment of the faith, be it for some form of atheism or for some other
faith, a concept largely unknown before the adoption of Christianity as the
official religion of Rome. The first well-known apostate is probably Julian, the
last pagan emperor of Rome. A lighter deviation from orthodoxy than heresy is
commonly called error, in the sense of not being grave enough to cause total
estrangement while yet seriously affecting communion. Sometimes error is
also used to cover both full heresies and minor errors.
Religion embraces conceptualization of the divine and practice of worship, and
how adherents of all faiths represent to others how they perceive these things,
both from within and from without. In each there is a degree of openness, and
The Pentecostal movement within Protestant Christianity places special
emphasis on the gifts of the Holy Spirit, as shown in the Biblical account of the
Day of Pentecost. Pentecostalism is similar to the Charismatic Movement, but
developed earlier and separated from the mainstream church. Charismatic
Christians, at least in the early days of the movement, tended to remain in their
respective denominations.
Pentecostals believe that you must be saved by believing in Jesus as Lord and
Saviour for the forgiveness of sins and to be made acceptable to God.
Pentecostals believe in water baptism as an outward sign of conversion, and
that the baptism in the Holy Spirit is a distinct spiritual experience that all who
have believed in Jesus should receive. Some Pentecostals believe that the
baptism in the Holy Spirit is always accompanied initially by the outward
evidence of speaking in tongues. This is a major difference between
Pentecostal and Charismatic Christians who believe that a Christian who is
baptized in the Holy Spirit may exhibit other physical signs instead of speaking
in tongues. However, the idea that one is not saved unless one speaks in
tongues is rejected by most major Pentecostal denominations. Pentecostals
also believe that the Bible has the final authority in matters of faith.
Theologically, most Pentecostal denominations are aligned with
Evangelicalism in that they emphasize the reliability of the Bible and the need
for the transformation of an individual's life with faith in Jesus. Most
Pentecostals also adhere to the doctrine of Biblical inerrancy. Pentecostals
differ from Fundamentalists by placing more emphasis on personal spiritual
Pentecostals have a transrational worldview. Although Pentecostals are
concerned with orthodoxy (correct belief), they are also concerned with
orthopathy (right affections) and orthopraxy (right reflection or action). Reason
is esteemed as a valid conduit of truth, but Pentecostals do not limit truth to
the realm of reason.
Dr. Jackie David Johns, in his work on Pentecostal formational leadership,
states that the Scriptures hold a special place in the Pentecostal worldview
because the Holy Spirit is always active in the Bible. For him, to encounter the
Scriptures is to encounter God. For the Pentecostal, the Scriptures are a
Protestantism is one of three primary branches of Christianity. The term
"Protestant" represents a diverse range of theological and social perspectives,
denominations, individuals, and related organizations. While no particular
belief or practice can be said to define this branch of Christianity, those
denominations considered to be well within the realm of Protestantism all have
firm roots in the Protestant Reformation in Europe during the sixteenth century.
Protestants often refer to specific Protestant churches and groups as
denominations to imply that they are differently named parts of the whole
church. This "invisible unity" is assumed to be imperfectly displayed, visibly:
some denominations are less accepting of others, and the basic orthodoxy of
some is questioned by most of the others. Individual denominations also have
formed over very subtle theological differences. Other denominations are
simply regional or ethnic expressions of the same beliefs. The actual number
of distinct denominations is hard to calculate, but has been estimated to be
over thirty thousand. Various ecumenical movements have attempted
cooperation or reorganization of Protestant churches, according to various
models of union, but divisions continue to outpace unions. Most denominations
share common beliefs in the major aspects of the Christian faith, while
differing in many secondary doctrines.
According to the World Christian Encyclopedia (2001) by David B. Barrett, et
al, there are "over 33,000 denominations in 238 countries". Every year there is
a net increase of around 270 to 300 denominations.
Protestant families of denominations
Please note that only general families are listed here (tens of thousands of
individual denominations exist); some of these groups do not consider
themselves as part of the Protestant movement, but are generally viewed as
such by scholars and the public at large:
• Anabaptist
• Anglican / Episcopal
• Baptist
• Calvinist / Reformed/Congregational and Presbyterian

Comparative religion is a field of religious studies that analyzes interpretive
differences of common themes and ideas among the world's religions. This
field of study relies heavily upon the examination of myth, deriving essential
themes from religious metaphor, and tracing in various ways a possible direct
cultural connection between them. It also makes comparisons between the
rituals and other aspects of various faiths besides just the myths.

Humanists, in particular, favour the teaching of comparative religion.





The word "ecumenism" (also oecumenism, œcumenism) (IPA:
/ɛkˈju ːmɛˈn    ɪzəm/) is derived from the Greek oikoumene, which means "the
inhabited world". In its broadest meaning ecumenism is the religious initiative
towards world-wide unity. A more limited goal of ecumenism is the promotion
of co-operation and improved understanding between distinct religious groups
or denominations within the same religion.
The word is used predominantly with reference to (and by) Christianity,
regarding movement toward unity (although not necessarily union), of Christian
denominations separated by doctrine, history and practice.
Christian ecumenism is the promotion of unity or cooperation between distinct
religious groups or denominations of the Christian religion, broadly defined.
Ecumenism in this sense is distinguished from interfaith pluralism.
Because Christianity is diverse, so is the definition of Christian ecumenism.
The interfaith movement strives for greater mutual respect, toleration, and co-
operation among the world religions. Ecumenism in this sense is called
religious pluralism, as distinguished from ecumenism within a faith movement.
Ecumenism as interfaith dialogue between representatives of diverse faiths,
does not necessarily intend reconciling their adherents into full, organic unity
with one another but simply to promote better relations. It promotes toleration,
mutual respect and cooperation, whether among Christian denominations, or
between Christianity and other faiths.
Alternatively, ecumenism can have the goal of reconciling all who profess
An ethnic group is a human population whose members identify with each
other, usually on the basis of a presumed common genealogy or ancestry
(Smith 1986). Ethnic groups are also usually united by common cultural,
behavioural, linguistic, or religious practices. In this sense, an ethnic group is
also a cultural community.
From an objective standpoint, an ethnic group is also an endogamous
population, that is, members of an ethnic group procreate primarily with other
members of their ethnic group, something which is measureable in terms of
characteristic average genetic frequencies. These differences, however, may
not approach the magnitude of racial difference in that the genetic differences
within an ethnic group are greater than the difference between any two ethnic
groups. The characteristic of endogamy is reinforced by proximity, cultural
familiarity, and also social pressure (in extreme cases, by legal command) to
procreate within the ethnic group.
In general, two types of ethnic groups have arisen in human history. The
earliest form is the kinship-based ethnic group most closely corresponding to
the term "tribe". As human populations became more mobile, another type of
ethnic group arose, most closely associated with the evolution of the state
("country"), as the opportunity to procreate outside the old kinship systems
presented itself. Invasion, migration, and pan-ethnic religions have contributed
to a further evolution of new ethnic groups out of the mixture of older ethnic
groups. At the same time, ethnic distinction can persist, even within the
bounds of a single country as long as members of an ethnic group procreate
primarily among themselves, for various reasons.
Members of an ethnic group generally claim a strong cultural continuity over
time, although historians and anthropologists have documented that many of
the cultural practices on which ethnic groups are based are of recent invention
(Friedlander 1975, Hobsbawm and Ranger 1983, Sider 1993). On the political
front, an ethnic group is distinguished from a nation-state by the former's lack
of sovereignty.
While ethnicity and race are related concepts (Abizadeh 2001), the concept of
ethnicity is rooted in the idea of social groups, marked especially by shared
nationality, tribal affiliation, religious faith, shared language, or cultural and




The History of religions refers to the Religiongeschichteschule, a Nineteenth
century German school of thought which was the first to systematically study
religion as a socio-cultural phenomenon.
The nineteenth century saw a dramatic increase in knowledge about other
cultures and religions, and also the establishment of economic and social
histories of progress. The "history of religions" school sought to account for
this religious diversity by connecting it with the social and economic situation of
a particular group.
Typically religions are divided into stages of progression from more simple to
more complex societies, especially from polytheistic to monotheistic and from
extempore to organised.
Thus, the starting point is the tribal band whose religion is animistic and
involves shamans and totems. Since the group is tribal, there is no permanent
sanctuary. Cultic rites centre on identification with wild animals and appeasing
spirits, often of the hunted.
As society developed into Chiefdoms and small kingdoms, religious rites
began to serve different functions. Agriculture became important and so
fertility gods were introduced (often female, as it is the woman who has the
power to produce life). The status of the "Big man" (or chief) was supported
with mythic tales of heroes and demigods, whom he may be descended from.
When these small kingdoms merged into larger groups (often through
conquest), different cults merged. The conquest of one group by another is
therefore recorded in an epic tale of the conquest of the conquered group's
Christmas (literally, the Mass of Christ), also known as Noël, is a traditional
holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus with both religious and secular aspects,
commonly observed on 25 December. In most Eastern Orthodox Churches,
even where the civil calendar used is the Gregorian, the event is observed
according to the Julian calendar, which coincides with the predominant
reckoning of 7 January. Celebrated mostly by Christians, the holiday is based
on the traditional —though not accurate— birth of Jesus, as 25 December 1
BC. Recent data has concluded that Jesus was likely born earlier, circa 8 BC –
2 BC. Christ's birth, or nativity, was said by his followers to fulfill the prophecies
of Judaism that a messiah would come, from the house of David, to redeem
the world from sin. Efforts to decide upon a date on which to celebrate his birth
began some centuries later.
The word Christmas is a contraction of Christ's Mass, derived from the Old
English Cristes mæsse. It is often abbreviated Xmas, probably because X
resembles the Greek letter Χ (chi) which has often historically been used as an
abbreviation for Christ (Χπιστόρ in Greek).
Christmas has acquired many secular aspects, which are sometimes
celebrated as often—or more—than the birth of Jesus. Many Christmas
traditions originated with pre-Christian observances that were syncretised into
Christianity. Examples of this process are the northern European Yule, and the
Winter Solstice celebration found in many older as well as recent pagan
In Western countries, Christmas has become the most economically
significant holiday of the year. It is largely characterized by gifts being
exchanged between friends and family members, and the appearance of
Santa Claus. Various local and regional Christmas traditions are still practised,
despite the widespread influence of American and British Christmas motifs
disseminated by globalization, popular literature, television, and other media.

Christian holidays
See also: liturgical year
All Saints' Day
All Souls' Day
Ascension Day (Ascension of Jesus into Heaven)
Ash Wednesday
Assumption of Mary (Assumption of the Virgin Mary)
Christmas (Birth of Jesus)
Corpus Christi
(Sacrifice of Jesus)
Easter (Resurrection of Jesus)
Easter Triduum
Easter Vigil
Good Friday (Death of Jesus)
Holy Saturday
Holy Thursday (Celebration of The Last Supper)
Pentecost or Whitsun (Descent of the Holy Spirit upon the disciples of Jesus)
Shrove Tuesday or Mardi Gras (last day of Carnival)
Winter Lent
Watch Night
The Catholic fiestas patronales are celebrated in each place's patron saint's
day, according to the Calendar of saints.
Easter is the most important religious holiday of the Christian liturgical year,
observed in March, April, or May to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, which
Christians believe occurred after his death by crucifixion in AD 27-33 (see
Good Friday). Easter can also refer to the season of the church year, lasting
for fifty days, which follows this holiday and ends at Pentecost.
Western Christianity
The Easter festival is kept in many different ways among Western Christians.
The traditional, liturgical observation of Easter, as practised among Roman
Catholics and some Lutherans and Anglicans begins on the night of Holy
Saturday with the Easter Vigil. This, the most important liturgy of the year,
begins in total darkness with the blessing of the Easter fire, the lighting of the
large Paschal candle (symbolic of the Risen Christ) and the chanting of the
Exsultet or Easter Proclamation attributed to Saint Ambrose of Milan. After this
service of light, a number of readings from the Old Testament are read; these
tell the stories of creation, the sacrifice of Isaac, the crossing of the Red Sea,
and the foretold coming of the Messiah. This part of the service climaxes with
the singing of the Alleluia and the proclamation of the gospel of the
resurrection. A sermon may be preached after the gospel. Then the focus
moves from the lectern to the font. Anciently, Easter was considered the most
perfect time to receive baptism, and this practice is alive in Roman
Catholicism, as it is the time when new members are initiated into the Church,
and it is being revived in some other circles. Whether there are baptisms at
this point or not, it is traditional for the congregation to renew the vows of their
baptismal faith. This act is often sealed by the sprinkling of the congregation
with holy water from the font. The Catholic sacrament of Confirmation is also
celebrated at the Vigil. The Easter Vigil concludes with the celebration of the
Eucharist and Holy Communion. Additional celebrations are usually offered on
Easter Sunday itself. Some churches prefer to keep this vigil very early on the
Sunday morning instead of the Saturday night to reflect the gospel account of
the women coming to the tomb at dawn on the first day of the week. Some
churches read the Old Testament lessons before the procession of the
Paschal candle, and then read the gospel immediately after the Exsultet.
In predominantly Roman Catholic Philippines, the morning of Easter (known in



Philosophy of religion is the rational study of the meaning and justification of
fundamental religious claims, particularly about the nature and existence of
God (or gods, or the divine).
Philosophy of religion as a part of metaphysics
Philosophy of religion has classically been regarded as a part of metaphysics.
In Aristotle's, Metaphysics, he described first causes as one of the subjects of
his investigation. For Aristotle, God was the first cause: the unmoved mover.
This later came to be called natural theology by rationalist philosophers of the
17th and 18th centuries. Today, philosophers have adopted the term
'philosophy of religion' for the subject, and typically it is regarded as a separate
field of specialization, though it is also still treated by some, particularly
Catholic philosophers, as a part of metaphysics.
It should be clear why considerations of the divine have been regarded as
metaphysical. God is usually conceived to be in a distinct category of being; a
being different from those of the rest of the universe. For example, God in
some traditions is conceived as not having a body. Metaphysics, and in
particular ontology, is concerned with the most basic categories of existence,
those things that cannot be explained with reference to any other type of
existence. Thus one might argue that the very notion of God (or gods, or the
divine) cannot be reduced to human concepts of mind or body; God is a sui
generis entity.
However, the philosophy of religion has concerned itself with more than just
metaphysical questions. In fact the subject has long involved important
questions in areas such as epistemology, philosophy of language,
philosophical logic, and moral philosophy.
Questions asked in philosophy of religion
One might think that philosophy of religion would be an inquiry into the
foundations of religions (as Philosophy X is typically an inquiry into the
foundations of X). However, philosophy of religion is predominantly an inquiry
into the nature of God and religious belief (not religions per se). Thus, two of
the main questions in the field are:
1. What is God?
2. Are there any good reasons to think that God does or does not exist?
The relationship between science and religion takes many forms. Generally
speaking, religion and science use different methods in their effort to ascertain
truth. The scientific method relies on an objective approach to measure,
calculate and describe the natural/physical/material universe. Religious
methods are typically more subjective (or intersubjective in community), relying
on varying notions of authority, through any combination of: revelation,
intuition, belief in the supernatural, individual experience, or a combination of
these to understand the universe. Science attempts to answer the "how" and
"what" questions of observable and verifiable phenomena; religion attempts to
answer the "why" questions of value and morals. However, some science also
attempts to explain such "why" questions, and some religious authority also
extends to "how" and "what" questions regarding the natural world, creating
the potential for conflict.
Historically, science has had a close and complex relationship with religion;
religious doctrines and motivations have often been central to scientific
development, while scientific knowledge has had profound effects on religious
beliefs. A common modern view, described by Stephen Jay Gould as "non-
overlapping magisteria" (NOMA), is that science and religion deal with
fundamentally separate aspects of human experience and so, when each
stays within its own domain, they co-exist peacefully.[1] Another view known
as the conflict thesis—popularized in the 19th century by John William Draper
and Andrew Dickson White, but now largely rejected by historians of
science—holds that science and religion inevitably compete for authority over
the nature of reality, so that religion has been gradually losing a war with
science as scientific explanations become more powerful and widespread.
However, neither of these views adequately accounts for the variety of
interactions between science and religion (both historically and today), ranging
from antagonism to separation to close collaboration.[2]
The attitudes of religion towards science

Science, and particularly geometry and astronomy, was linked directly to the
divine for most medieval scholars. The compass in this 13th century
manuscript is a symbol of creation.

Religious interpretations of politics
• How theologians interpret the political domain, and how they suggest that
people should act within that domain (for example "Render unto Caesar what
is Caesar's and unto God what is God's). This can include withdrawing from
the world, quietism and political activity per se (for example moves to impose
Sharia Law), see also Liberation theology
Believers in the political domain
• The activity of believers in politics can be varied - see Christian Right,
Christian Socialism, and a number of faith based parties. Some political
activity can be directed towards causes rather than party politics - for example
the Anti-slavery movement.
Political perceptions of religions
• The interaction of various religions within the political domain, including
sectarianism. In many states the church and the state are formally separate, in
theory or in practice, even if one particular faith is given particular support.
Orthodox and Catholic believers describe Christian worship in terms of the
seven sacraments or "mysteries." These include baptism, the Eucharist
(communion), matrimony, Holy Orders, confirmation or Chrismation, penance
and reconciliation, and the Anointing of the Sick.
Many Protestant groups, following Martin Luther, recognize the sacramental
nature of baptism and communion, but not usually the other five in the same
way. Anabaptist and Brethren groups would add feet washing. Pentecostal,
Charismatic, and Holiness Churches emphasize "gifts of the Spirit" such as
spiritual healing, prophecy, exorcism, and speaking in tongues. These
emphases are used not as "sacraments" but as means of worship and
ministry. The Quakers deny the entire concept of sacraments. Nevertheless,
their "testimonies" affirming peace, integrity, equality, and simplicity are
affirmed as integral parts of the Quaker belief structure.
In general, Protestants tend to view Christian rituals in terms of
commemoration apart from mystery. Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Old-Catholic
and many Anglican and Lutheran Christians hold the commemoration and
mystery of rituals together, seeing no contradiction between them.
Virtually all Christian traditions affirm that Christian practice should include
acts of personal piety such as prayer, Bible reading, and attempting to live a
moral lifestyle. This lifestyle includes not only obedience to the Ten
Commandments, as interpreted by Christ (as in the Sermon on the Mount), but
also love for one's neighbor in both attitude and action — whether friend or
enemy, Christian or non-Christian. This love is commanded by Christ and,
according to him, is next only in importance to love toward God; which includes
obedience to such injunctions as "feed the hungry" and "shelter the homeless",
both informally and formally. Christianity teaches that it is impossible for
people to completely reform themselves, but that moral and spiritual progress
can only occur with God's help through the gift of the Holy Spirit, who dwells
within all faithful believers. Christians believe that by sharing in Christ's life,
death, and resurrection, they die with Him to sin and can be resurrected with
Him to new life.
Weekly worship services
Justin Martyr (First Apology, chapter LXVII) describes a second-century
s author and context information and is arranged in the order of the Bible books. A handbook can also be called a companion.

an expression. It is most often a written or oral fragment and in such cases it is also called a quote. A typical, and perhaps ideal, quotation is
st, or simply to express one's thoughts and emotions. Books on the theory and practice of prayer prayers are included here. Book
rol and immediate social environment. They usually concern more then a single individual and affect many individuals in a society. Social iss
e called a companion.

ical, and perhaps ideal, quotation is usually short, concise and commonly only one sentence long. There are two broad categories which mo
r prayers are included here. Books of prayers will be found in REL052010 RELIGION / Prayerbooks / Christian.
ny individuals in a society. Social issues, as contrasted with personal troubles of a given individual, can be explained in terms of individual sh
e are two broad categories which most quotations fall into, beauty and truth, although some quotations fit equally well into both these groups.
books / Christian.
be explained in terms of individual shortcomings related to motivation, attitude, ability, character, or judgment.
t equally well into both these groups. 'Beautiful' quotations are words remembered for their aesthetically pleasing use of language, whereas m
pleasing use of language, whereas many other quotations are remembered because they are thought to express some universal truth. Thes
o express some universal truth. These latter quotations are often called maxims or aphorisms and they are highly regarded for being pithy re
are highly regarded for being pithy renderings of ideas that most people have but most have not been able to express so clearly. A third type
ble to express so clearly. A third type of quotation may be any line which merely reminds the person who quotes it of a particularly memorable
quotes it of a particularly memorable work, sometimes making a subtle comparison to the situation or topic a

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