Category Archives: News Features

Book Discussion: The Confessions of St. Augustine

In the introduction to her analysis of Shakespeare’s plays, scholar Marjorie Garber writes that “what is often described as the timelessness of Shakespeare…is perhaps better understood as an uncanny timeliness, a capacity to speak directly to circumstances the playwright could not have anticipated or foreseen.”1

Of all the ancient authors whose works have come down to us, perhaps none fits this description so well as Augustine. His Confessions depict a civilization and personages that seem immediately recognizable to us. From his religiously indifferent father to, to his pious mother not above prioritizing ambition for her son over Biblical teaching, to Augustine himself, a brilliant intellectual torn between lust and spiritual yearning, we feel that at, at various times in our lives, we have known modern equivalents of Augustine and his parents.

In the Confessions, written in his early 40s, Augustine tells us the story of his life from boyhood to his conversion at age 31. Readers interested in ancient history will find a vivid picture of life in the North African provinces during the final decades of the Roman Empire. Far more important, however, is Augustine’s examination of the spiritual meaning behind even seemingly insignificant events, such as the famous theft of pears from a neighbor’s tree by a mischievous boy Augustine and his fellow miscreants. Above all, and the explanation for its continuous impact on Christian readers since its publication in 400, the Confessions illustrates, through Augustine’s own life, the truth of the author’s words to God near the beginning of the book: “In yourself you rouse us, giving us delight in glorifying you, because you made us with yourself as our goal, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.”2

On Friday, October 27 at noon, the Library Book Club begins its fifteenth season with a discussion of this essential work for all Christians. It is not necessary to complete the book to participate, and both Audible and Hoopla have free audiobook options for listening. For the complete schedule and link to register for in-person or video participation, see the Library Book Club homepage.

1Marjorie B. Garber, Shakespeare after All. (New York: Pantheon Books, 2004), 3.  

2Augustine, Confessions, trans. Sarah Ruden (New York: Modern Library, 2017), 3.

 

Library Book Club Schedule for 2023-2024

The Library Book Club was launched in 2008 with the goal of bringing members of the Regent and CBN communities together to read and discuss important works of literature in an informal setting.

This academic year, the Library Book Club schedule is comprised of five classic Christian works chosen by the librarians from 25 Books Every Christian Should Read. In selecting our list of five books, we tried to pick works that are on the to-read list of many Christians and are just waiting for the right opportunity to occur, such as a group read in a Christian book club.

While there is no requirement to finish a book to come to the discussion, we have scheduled the list so that even the longest book, The Brothers Karamazov, can be completed with a commitment to read (or listen) a little each day. All the titles are available from the Library in print and e-books formats and in audiobook through Audible, Hoopla, or Libby.

For the complete schedule and links to register for in-person or video participation, see the Library Book Club homepage. For additional information, contact Harold Henkel

Learn a foreign language this summer!

Do you know what foreign languages your friends at Regent are learning? Between May 2020 and April 2021, 1,203 members of the Regent community studied 38 modern, 4 ancient, and 2 English as a Second Language courses using the Mango Languages software. The course that saw the greatest increase in use was Haitian Creole, with 108 learning sessions, making it the 4th most studied language. 73% of all learning sessions were on mobile devices, with an average session length of 15 minutes.

Here, by order of learning sessions, are the twenty most popular Mango languages at Regent during the past year:

Rank Language Learning Sessions
1 French 1,107
2 Spanish, Latin American 637
3 German 113
4 Haitian Creole 108
5 Chinese, Mandarin 87
6 Portuguese, Brazil 85
7 Japanese 59
8 Dutch 58
9 Russian 42
10 Hebrew, Biblical 34
11 Greek, Modern 24
12  Tagalog 23
13 Hebrew, Modern 29
14 Greek, Ancient 24
15 Italian 22
16 Turkish 21
17 Greek, New Testament 20
18  Latin 8
19 Tamil 7
20 Arabic, Egyptian 6

Mango offers an amazing array of language and cultural products available 24/7 to current Regent users and alumni, including 72 foreign languages, 17 ESL courses, and special cultural training courses, such as Arab etiquette and Chinese business customs. For advanced learners, Mango even has full-length foreign films with subtitles and special learning tools.

Whether you are planning a mission trip to Japan, getting in touch with your Irish roots, or have always wanted to read the Bible in the original Hebrew and Greek, Mango Languages can help you achieve your goals. Language study is a crucial component for understanding another culture. While complete fluency in a language requires years of study, even basic proficiency will make you feel more at ease when abroad and impress your overseas contacts with your good manners in taking the time to learn some of their language. It will also make your time in a foreign country much more rewarding. As the great filmmaker Federico Fellini put it, “A different language is a different vision of life.”

New banners display Library’s core values

Nearly everyone agrees that, both for individuals and organizations, living by certain values is important, but how does this manifest itself in practice? According to Harvard Business School professors Clayton Christiansen and Michael Overdorf, organizational values are “the standards by which employees set priorities” about what is more and less important in their operations.* Along with its Vision and Mission statements, the Library lists four core values, exemplified by Scripture.

With the help of Regent marketing, the Library has created attractive banners for each of our core values. They are in front of the resource desk. Photos of each banner are located on our Facebook and  Instagram pages.

*Clayton M. Christiansen and Michael Overdorf, “Meeting the Challenge of Disruptive Change. (Cover Story),” Harvard Business Review 78, no. 2 (March 2000): 69, http://eres.regent.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?authtype=ip,uid&profile=bsi&defaultdb=bth&defaultdb=buh

Bible treasures on display at the Library

The Word of God is foundational to everything we do at Regent University, especially in academic pursuits. The Library is proud of our amazing collection of 1,884 Bibles in 52 languages and 46 versions, translations, and paraphrases. Our goal is to make the Word of God easily accessible and to create visual reminders of God’s Word and its importance to our work.

The Library is currently displaying a selection of its Bibles in the foyer and throughout the first floor. One example is a reproduction of the Gutenberg Bible. Experts painstakingly reproduced the binding, letters, drawings, colors and even the type of paper stock to make this a near-perfect copy of the original.

We invite our patrons who have been cleared to enter the Library to take a few moments on their next visit to enjoy the displays of these precious Bibles.

– Dr. Esther R. Gillie, Dean of the University Library

Gutenberg Bible facsimile. On display in the Library.