Lives Entrusted: An Ethic of Trust for Ministry

by Barbara J. Blodgett. Fortress Press, 2008.

Experience and education have shown author and seminary instructor Barbara Blodgett that trust is transactional, a part of all human exchanges. Blodgett further believes that trust is not nurtured or cultivated with intentionality and purpose as it should be. Here, she counters that prevailing condition and discusses, among other issues, misconduct, authenticity, testimony, vulnerability, gossip, power, and confidentiality within the context of trust. Her perspective includes both clergy and laity and their roles in the “transaction” of trust. The conclusion is a series of questions and answers on topics such as the biblical view of divine and human trust, and several additional comments about gossip versus testimony. The extensive notes and detailed index are helpful aids to readers. This innovative look at trust is written from a Christian perspective; however, the larger impact of trust on human behavior and relationships makes it appropriate for leaders from all religious traditions.