Unspeakable
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Unspeakable

Sarah Travis, Paul Scott Wilson

Unspeakable probes the relationship between trauma theory and Christian theology in order to support preachers in the task of crafting sermons that adequately respond to trauma in the pews and the world at large. How might sermons contribute to resiliency and the repairing of wounds caused by traumatic experiences? This book seeks to provide a theological lens for preachers who wonder how their ‘beautiful words’ can address suffering amid traumatic wounding. Preaching is a healing discourse that proclaims gospel, or good news. Gospel is a complicated reality, especially in the face of trauma. Drawing on various theologies and insights from trauma theory, Unspeakable challenges the notion of a triumphant gospel, seeking an in-between perspective that honors both resurrection and the trauma that remains despite our desire to get to the good news. It builds on images of the preacher as witness and midwife in order to develop homiletical practices that acknowledge the limitations of language and imagination experienced by traumatized individuals.

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