Selecting books

 Who is your library for?


  • Try to have something for everyone in your church.
    Consider differences in
    • age
    • gender
    • interests - even people who don't read much may read a book on their own special interest, such as:
    • abilities
    • faith stages from inquirers to new Christians to mature believers
    • vocations
    • cultures
  • Don't forget seekers and sceptics – some books can be great evangelistic tools, eg. Charles Colson became a Christian after a friend lent him Mere Christianity.
  • Include books by local authors, eg. NZ books for NZ church libraries.
    • US books dominate the market but some of them are less relevant to the rest of the world. The rest of the world has a lot to contribute!
    • To see a list of books in the Greyfriars libary with a Kiwi connection (such as a New Zealand author or concerning a New Zealand missionary), search for "nz" in our catalogue: 
  • Try to include authors from other places and times, to avoid entrenching cultural biases.
    “The only palliative (for the mistakes of our time) is to keep the clean sea breeze of the centuries blowing through our minds, and this can be done only by reading old books. Not, of course, that there is any magic about the past. People were no cleverer then than they are now; they made as many mistakes as we. But not the same mistakes.” (C S Lewis)
    “These ideas were especially powerful because Ellul was speaking biblical truth from a European perspective, uncluttered by American bias.” (Jay Kesler, re Jacques Ellul's The Presence of the Kingdom)
  • On controversial issues, books presenting different Christian views in a debate format can be helpful, such as the excellent Counterpoints series. For example:
  • Include some graphic Bibles, graphic novels, and other illustrated books such as: