rather unfashionable lately. Life is lived at such a pace that we seem to have less and less time to stand aside from everincreasing daily pressures and "raise our hearts and minds" to spiritual matters. We realise that prayer is or should be a vital part of our lives, perhaps. but how do we progress beyond a hasty repetition of formulas learnt in childhood?
In his introduction to The Prayers of the New Testament (Hodder and Stoughton. 40p), Donald Coggan, Archbishop of York. explains: "This book is for the ordinary man and woman —the people who are told, and who in varying degrees believe, that prayer is an important part of spiritual life and who would be prepared to go at it seriously if only they knew how."
The Archbishop has taken all the prayers recorded in the New Testament, commenting on each one and cross-referring from one to another. The result is fascinating, not a book for reading "at a sitting" but a real help to any Christian who would like to know more about prayer.
Hodder and Stoughton have also brought out three new titles in their paperback Square Book series — Tortured for Christ by Richard Wurmbrand, The Way I See It by Cliff Richard, and Ring of Truth by J. B. Phillips (15p each).
The Reverend Richard Wurmbrand is an evangelical minister who spent fourteen years in communist prisons in his own country, Rumania, for his practice of his Christian ministry. In 1945, when the communists took over in Rumani a, he immediately began his "underground" ministry to his own countrymen and even to the Russian soldiers. He was first arrested in 1948, with his wife who was in a slave labour camp for three years.
Physical and mental torture were inflicted on Pastor Wurmbrand, but he continued with his ministry even in prison. Released after eight years, he promptly resumed his work with the underground Church and was re-arrested in 1959 and sentenced to 25 years in prison.
In 1964 there was a general amnesty. The communists were selling political prisoners for £800 each. Norwegian Christ
ians managed to "buy" Pastor Wurmbrand for £2,500. "Tortured for Christ" is his own story.
He tells it so that Christians in the West can know the truth about what is happening to those who try to preserve their faith under communism.