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Working the Angles: The Shape of Pastoral Integrity

, 1987
ISBN: 9780802802651

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According to Eugene Peterson, American pastors are abandoning their posts at an alarming rate. They are not leaving their churches and getting other jobs. Instead, they have become “a company of shopkeepers, and the shops they keep are churches.” Pastors and the communities they serve have become preoccupied with image and standing, with administration, measurable success, sociological impact, and economic viability.

In Working the Angles, Peterson calls the attention of his fellow pastors to three basic acts—which he sees as the three angles of a triangle—that are so critical to the pastoral ministry that they determine the shape of everything else. The acts—prayer, reading Scripture, and giving spiritual direction—are acts of attention to God in three different contexts: oneself, the community of faith, and another person. Only by being attentive to these three critical acts, says Peterson, can pastors fulfill their prime responsibility of keeping the religious community attentive to God.

In the Logos edition, Working the Angles is enhanced by amazing functionality. Scripture citations link directly to English translations, and important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Powerful searches help you find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Resource Experts
  • Examines three basic pastoral acts: prayer, reading Scripture, and giving spiritual direction
  • Offers reflections and commentary out of the context of the author’s own work
  • First Angle: Prayer
    • Greek Stories and Hebrew Prayers
    • Praying by the Book
    • Prayer Time
  • Second Angle: Scripture
    • Turning Eyes into Ears
    • Contemplative Exegesis
    • Gaza Notes
  • Third Angle: Spiritual Direction
    • Being a Spiritual Director
    • Getting a Spiritual Director
    • Practicing Spiritual Direction
A good book to help us all be attentive to God in our practice.

Sharing the Practice

Ministers sweating it out on the front line should not miss it.

Expository Times

A provocative book. Peterson offers a stimulating challenge to much current pastoral practice. . . . His writing has the unmistakable ring of truth.

Theology Today

Eugene Peterson is a prophet. Like the words of most prophets, his criticisms of his peers in the clergy are not easy to take, but when one considers carefully his positive statements the rightness of his speech can be recognized. . . . This is a book that is hard to put down, but the reader must stop every so often to consider what it is saying. it is not a book which can easily be forgotten.

The Clergy Journal

  • Title: Working the Angles: The Shape of Pastoral Integrity
  • Author: Eugene H. Peterson
  • Publisher: Eerdmans
  • Publication Date: 1989
  • Pages: 200

Eugene H. Peterson (1932–2018) was a pastor, scholar, author, and poet. He wrote more than thirty books, including his widely acclaimed paraphrase of the Bible, The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language, his memoir, The Pastor, and numerous works of biblical spiritual formation, including Run with the Horses, also available in a commemorative edition. Peterson was founding pastor of Christ Our King Presbyterian Church in Bel Air, Maryland, where he served for twenty-nine years before retiring in 1991. With degrees from Seattle Pacific, New York Theological Seminary, and Johns Hopkins University, he served as professor of spiritual theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia, until retiring in Lakeside, Montana, in 2006.


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  1. Stephen Williams
  2. Paul Knopf

    Paul Knopf


  3. Allen Bingham

    Allen Bingham




Digital list price: $13.99
Save $3.00 (21%)