Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Os Guinness reviews "Crazy for God"

Os Guinness has written the definitive review of Frank Schaeffer's book, Crazy for God, which I, too, have reviewed. Guinness, the wisest of evangelical social critics, spent three years at L'Abri (the community of Francis and Edith Schaeffer), and brings his personal experience and deep insights to bear on Frank's largely distorted picture. He does so with passion, reason, and charity.

7 comments:

Adam Omelianchuk said...

WOW! That was a joy to read.

Tom said...

That is a very credible, fair-minded review. And the author never once mentions that Frank misspells his name throughout (as 'Oz' rather than 'Os')! (Not having read the book myself, I'm going by what Doug said in his review.)

Robert Velarde said...

Great article. I found it particularly interesting that Guinness noted that some other Christian reviews of Schaeffer's book praise the style, but fail to address questions of veracity (the substance). Admiration for well-crafted falsehood must, if offered, be tempered with the discernment of truth from error.

Singing Owl said...

Excellent, and comforting as well. Thanks for sharing the review, which I had not seen.

Tom Hinkle said...

Yep, Frank sure painted a distorted picture, didn't he? He was only part of the family--I would think he would know what he's talking about above someone that spent three years at L'Abri. Why don't you just admit it? Christians fall into hero worship just as much as the "world" does, and it's disconcerting to know that their heroes can actually be flawed. Of course, there is Biblical precedent for flawed heroes (King David, anyone?) but to heck with that. If Francis Schaeffer didn't walk on water and wasn't translated into heaven on a golden chariot it apparently makes for a traumatic experience for people, which forces them into a state of denial.

I'm certainly not saying Frank was or has been perfect here, but he is writing it as it affected him according to what he observed and was subject to growing up and afterwards. I don't think anyone has the right to say he was "wrong" because this was a memoir, folks. And I'm sure Guinness didn't appreciate some of what was said about him in the book; you don't think that would have colored his opinion in the least, now, do you?

Adam Omelianchuk said...

James Frey wrote a memoir too, and it was quite appropriate to say he was "wrong" about what happened. Frank's book is further testimony to how dreadful the genre of autobiography in the 21st century has become.

Tom Hinkle said...

Adam,
Frey was exposed and then admitted he made up most of his memoirs. Until that happens to Frank, I think I'll suspend my judgment of his book as "wrong." But you go right ahead.