The Fraser Valley has often been described as “the Bible belt” of British Columbia, and the City of Abbotsford as “the buckle of the Bible belt.”
The terms have frequently been used to present a simplistic and negative caricature of the city, says David Giesbrecht, one of the editors of a new book.
He said “Being the Church in Abbotsford: Reflective Essays” features 11 essays that present a more complex view.
They highlight topics such as inter-church engagement; spiritual care in the hospital; the need for interfaith dialogue; faith and social concern; faith and the arts; faith and education; faith and business; and faith and politics.
Giesbrecht said the book can be seen as a sequel to The Church in the Heart of the Valley: 1892-1992 (edited by A.J. Klassen, 1992), but it attempts to reflect more profoundly on the reality of the city.
Being the Church in Abbotsford, published by Mill Lake Books/Judson Lake House Publishers, is available at House of James bookstore at 2743 Emerson St. It sells for $10.
It was also edited by Ron Dart, J. H. Hans Kouwenberg and J. Christoph Reiners.
An official launch for the book takes place on Saturday, June 29 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the House of James.