Reading for All

The accessible Christian reading and resources magazine from the Torch Trust.

2016 Issue 4

Reading for All is published by The Torch Trust for people with sight loss with an interest in accessible Christian reading resources.

Produced by Torch Trust
Torch House, Torch Way
Market Harborough
Leicestershire
LE16 9HL UK
torchtrust.org

© Torch Trust August 2016 Reg. Charity number 1095904

Views expressed in the features are not necessarily those of the publisher.

Reading for All is available in the following formats: Email, Audio CD, braille, and large print (17, 20, 25 and 30 point). Plus it can also be viewed on the Torch website.

Contact Numbers

Client Services

For all general enquiries: 01858 438260

Library

For library borrowers: 01858 438266

Torch Holidays

For all holiday enquiries: 01273 832282

Reflections Radio Show

For responses to our radio broadcasts: 0333 123 1255

Contents

In the beginning ...

I love the anticipation as we approach Christmas. It’s exciting planning the surprises and preparing the rooms for visitors. Advent is all about waiting, preparing and anticipating, and we need to prepare room in our hearts for the promised King. We have two Advent titles for you to choose from, which will help build that anticipation spiritually and prayerfully.

There are Christmas resources in Resource News as well as information on the Enabling Church conference.

The John Walmsley interview illustrates how Torch meets the various needs of people new to the sight loss journey, which we follow up with details of the various ministries such as Journeying With, Torch Groups and Holidays. There’s also news of Reflections Radio Show’s special Christmas Show.

Manoj Raithatha talks about his book and there are another five new titles in Hot off the press as well as the four titles that won awards at this year’s Christian Resources Together.

We always want to encourage you in your personal devotions and prayer life so check out the daily devotionals in In your quiet time and consider A word of prayer for more creative prayer ideas.

Wishing you all a very blessed Christmas and a joyful New Year.Happy Reading!

Lydia Tebbutt, Editor

Quote of the quarter

“It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.”

Oscar Wilde

Contents

Resource news

Resources for Advent & Christmas

The Little Book of Advent compiled by Canon Arthur Howells

The Little Book of Advent is an indispensable collection of readings from some of the most celebrated modern-day spiritual writers, with passages specially selected for each day of Advent.

These carefully chosen insights come from men and women, lay and ordained, across the denominational spectrum, and their wisdom is combined with both a suggested scripture passage, and a prayer to make your own.

This book can be used either for self-reflection or to spark discussion in groups during an Advent course. It is a volume that will become a treasured part of your prayer life during the run-up to Christmas, and can be used year after year.”

Available in braille, giant print, and on DAISY audio CD & USB memory stick for loan from the Torch Library and to purchase in all media except USB, price £4.99. On Kindle from Amazon price £1.99

Love Life Live Advent by Paula Gooder & Peter Babington

Make room for the manger this December with Love Life Live Advent, a resource to help you celebrate the run-up to Christmas.

Following the popularity of Love Life Live Advent for Kids, this edition for adults and youth offers a prayer activity for every day of December up to Christmas Day, designed to enrich your understanding of the season of waiting and preparation.

Each activity is accompanied by a thoughtful and inspiring Bible reflection from Paula Gooder, one of today’s most renowned biblical commentators.

Love Life Live Advent also offers extra material for each of the Sundays of Advent with their distinctive biblical themes. The material is undated and may be used in any year.

Available in braille, giant print, and on DAISY audio CD & USB memory stick for loan from the Torch Library and to purchase in all media except USB price £2.99. On Kindle from Amazon price £2.40

Reflections Christmas CD

Our Christmas “Freebie” this year is a Christmas special from the Torch Reflections Radio Show team presented by Marilyn Baker.

Available on audio CD – price: FREE

Bethlehem Carol Sheet 57th Edition

Although the carols are the same and in the same order as the 56th edition, we have reissued this resource to keep in line with Embrace the Middle East’s numbering.

Available in braille and large print price: FREE

Scripture Text Calendar 2017

Our ever popular Scripture Text Calendar is now available in braille and large print, price £2.50

Other resources from Torch

God’s Special People by Michael Stafford

This collection of character studies first published in The Torch magazine, makes an ideal introduction to some of the people encountered in the Old Testament.

Michael says of his new book “Of necessity the studies are brief but hopefully comprehensive, being an outline rather than a detailed account, but including an application to our own Christian living. It is important to see how God’s purposes were worked out through these people, and it reminds us that we too have a purpose in God’s economy and are all ‘Special People’ to Him.”

Available in braille, giant print, and on DAISY audio CD & USB memory stick for loan from the Torch Library and to purchase in print, braille, large print and DAISY, price £5.00

Torch In Focus – new brochure

We are delighted to introduce our new brochure, which sets out the vision and purpose of Torch – who we are, where we work, what we do and why we do it.

Available in print, braille, large print and on audio CD, price FREE

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NIV Audio Bible in One Year

The NIV Audio Bible read by David Suchet has been arranged into daily readings to help you listen to the complete Bible in one year. On this six-MP3-CD set, each day there is a portion from the Old Testament, the New Testament and the Psalms or Proverbs, each on separate tracks to make it easy to navigate. It can be used on any device that displays the MP3 symbol.

Due for release on 17th November from Amazon, price £29.99 or Eden, price £22.99

An Enabling Church conference from Churches for All

No Limits

Additional Needs, Disability & the Church

An event full of ideas & inspiration for all who work with or support children, families & youth, plus anyone with a passion to see the abilities of everyone recognised.

When: Saturday 12th November 2016 10am – 4:30pm

Where: Friends Meeting House, Euston Rd, London

Cost: £25.00

Contact: enabledchurch@gmail.com

Last year’s Enabling Church conference attracted over 400 people from all denominations all wanting to make church more accessible to people with disabilities.

What is your church doing to include people? Could you or someone you know benefit from the expertise available at this event?

TorchTalk

Torch runs an ever-growing telephone befriending service. There is a Harvest TorchTalk and there will be an Advent TorchTalk. There are book groups, men’s groups and a group for families as well as a ladies group. There is a group in Northern Ireland and we hope to start a similar one in Scotland. However, location is no barrier, you can join any of the TorchTalk groups wherever you live including our Christmas Special TorchTalk.

Sue and Geraint Jones will be facilitating our Christmas Special TorchTalk for people who won’t be able to get to a traditional Christmas service this year, but it is open to anyone with sight loss.

If you would like to be included on 23rd December at 11 am for 1 hour, then do give our Client Services team a call.

Torch Resources - for all aspects of the sight loss journey

John Walmsley talks to Leonard Campbell

John was diagnosed with Glaucoma around seven years ago. For many years he has also suffered from bad arthritis and hasn’t been very mobile. Therefore, he very much appreciated help from his wife Margaret.

John received his first Journeying With befriender, Elsa, from Torch in February 2014. These visits from Elsa also provided an opportunity for Margaret to leave the house to do other things. Not long after the befriending arrangement came to an end, Margaret sadly died. To compound the situation, John's eyesight began to deteriorate further and Torch was asked if they could provide another befriender for John.

Adrienne became John's next befriender and, when she met John for their first befriending meeting, she realised that she knew him. They had both lived in the same area during the 1950s & 60s, but they hadn't seen each other for many years. John has struggled to come to terms with his sight loss; in particular, it is difficult when he has to go outside into new environments. Losing his sight has led to other losses in his life. He shared how he felt “isolated and cut off” when he was no longer able to see the television or read a book. Adrienne helped him to get a USB player and also a Bible on USB stick from Torch.

Previously, he had even been struggling to read in large print. Since receiving the Bible in audio, John has listened to the whole of it, not once, but twice and he says that this was the first time that he has ever read through the whole of the Old Testament. He says, “It was lovely to sit down and listen to someone reading so clearly and I could understand every word; I got fed spiritually from it; and it deepened my faith. I hope that I have changed as a result of listening to the Bible.”

John describes being reintroduced to God’s Word as one of the best things to have happened to him from being befriended. He explains, “when I wasn't able to read it, I really missed it.”

Adrienne also shared about how rewarding she found her time befriending John:

“It was a privilege for me to be able to read and discuss Scripture, as well as pray with him. I found it a humbling experience to be able to offer support and encouragement during this difficult period in John’s life.”

As well as getting the Bible, John has also borrowed many books on USB from the Torch Library. He shares, “Now I have got back to reading books, I am really enjoying it.”

John’s desire is for other people who are losing their sight to be able to access Torch resources in the same way that he has. When asked what advice he would give to someone losing their sight, he replied, “Get a befriender as quickly as you can, you won't regret it.”

Journeying With

“I don’t have many people coming here at all. I’m so lonely, very lonely ... I don’t have anyone at all to talk to about what’s happening to my sight. It’s what you don’t know that frightens you, when you can’t understand what’s going on in your eye.” Isabel.

What Isabel needs most is a little time ... from someone who will come alongside her in her time of need.

Isabel is not the only person to feel this way. In fact her story is all too common. Each day across Britain, 100 people learn that they are losing their sight. Most receive little or no emotional support at what can be a devastating time.

Could you help meet this need?

Contact our Client Services team for more information.

Torch Groups

A new Torch Group for Sidmouth

The first meeting of the new Sidmouth Torch Group started with nine people and one guide dog - getting to know one another.

They discussed what people might want to gain from the group, and whether the time, day, venue were all okay with people. Janet Eardley was a guest and she demonstrated the MegaVoice; and Reg (one of the leaders) showed them his memory stick player and played a little from one of his recent books from the Torch library.

Janet says that the meeting had a good, friendly feel to it. They decided that perhaps sometimes they may have a speaker, sometimes not, but the important thing is the meeting together.

Let us know if you need more information about starting a Torch Group in your area.

Torch Holiday and Retreat Centre

“There’s something for everyone at the Torch Holiday and Retreat Centre – the haven for people with sight loss!”

Yes! Next year’s holiday dates list is now available FREE in print, braille, large print and on audio CD.

If you’re new to Torch Holidays, there’s also a lovely new brochure that tells you all about “our beautiful Centre, a country house venue in rural West Sussex, which provides exceptional accessibility tailored to the needs of our guests, in an attractive and peaceful environment on the edge of the South Downs National Park.” Available FREE in print, braille, large print, and on audio CD.

Reflections Radio Show

The programmes for the current edition of the CD are as follows:

Red Széll: blind climber

Red has lost most of his sight to Retinitis Pigmentosa. After many years believing he could no longer pursue his passion for climbing, he decided to take the plunge and get started again. And he didn't start small!

Eggheads with Nicki Cockburn

Have you ever watched BBC quiz show Eggheads? Well, Torch client Nicki Cockburn is a big fan - so much so that she applied to become an Egghead herself! Listen to how she got on in her starring moment on TV and find out what else she's up to - including an amazing long-distance walk in aid of Guide Dogs.

Bill Braviner: Disability and Jesus

We're joined by Rev Bill Braviner, co-leader of the organisation Disability and Jesus. He shares his personal story of faith and the road that lead him to become so involved in equality in the church and community, and to starting Disability and Jesus.

Disability and Jesus

Finally, we learn more about the charity Disability and Jesus: where it came from, what it's doing, how it does it and why it's so important.

Dave Lucas from Disability and Jesus

In this show we hear from Dave Lucas, co-founder of Disability and Jesus, as he opens up about his own personal story of sight loss and faith, and how although life hasn't followed the path he expected, he feels he is now exactly where he's meant to be.

To receive your free copy of our Reflections Radio Monthly CD contact Client Services on 01858 438260

Don’t forget to tune in Christmas morning for our Reflections one hour Christmas Special Show.

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Author interview

(Source: Amanda Pilz from Together Magazine Mar/Apr 2015)

Manoj Raithatha had it all. A booming property business, a picture-book family, and the power to shape his destiny. His was a life to envy.

In his newly-released autobiography, Filthy Rich, Manoj Raithatha recounts how he went from being a school boy in Kenya to multi-millionaire; but after suddenly losing almost everything, his life changed beyond recognition.

How had this extraordinary rollercoaster life unfolded?

“Although I was a Hindu, at age 16 I attended a Catholic boarding school in England. I was expected to go to Mass but was more interested in friendships and earning money on the side. I knew I wanted to be successful and was pretty sure I was going to be because I believed in myself.”

Yet, unable to get a job after graduating, Manoj ended up serving coffee to customers in a furniture shop. But even in this unpromising environment he showed his potential for business. “The manager quickly noticed that I was passing on customers to the sales people, and a few weeks later they offered me a sales job. I soon became one of the top sales people across the entire company.”

Manoj made a lot of money in commission and decided to purchase a house in a street where no one was buying in the belief that the value of the house would increase. It did. After three years he sold it for double the amount.

It seemed success followed him wherever he went. Having gone into drama teaching, he wrote a play with his wife that won a Fringe First at the Edinburgh Festival. Shortly after, he was commissioned to write a TV series: My Life as a Popat, which won a Bafta and was nominated for an international Emmy.

But he left the theatre and TV work behind because none of this satisfied his real desire which was to make as much money as possible.

“I didn’t just want to be rich I wanted to be filthy rich. I began buying flats and renting them out then started buying and selling property that was still being built. Before long I was buying hundreds in one go and did what was thought to be the largest property deal in the North in 2005.”

At its height the company had an annual turnover of 70 million pounds. Manoj and his family were enjoying the high life and it seemed like things couldn’t be better; but all was not as it seemed.

“Over time money became my god. It was like a drug. I became a bad husband and was unfaithful. I started to develop an aggressive nature even at home. There wasn’t one deal that I would turn away but I wasn’t happy at all. I always thought the next year would make me happy, that I would find contentment.”

Suddenly Manoj’s entire world was rocked. Overnight, the 2008 credit crunch stripped him of almost everything he had worked for. At the same time his son fell seriously ill and was rushed to hospital.

It was outside the resuscitation room where his son was fighting for his life that Manoj was brought face to face with reality; that the life he had built for himself could not help him now. For the first time since he was a young boy in Kenya he prayed.

At about this time he and his wife had befriended a Christian couple who, having heard about his son’s illness, told them they, their family and their church in America were all praying.

“On the fourth day the consultant told us my son wasn’t going to open his eyes but then suddenly, while she was doing her rounds, my son sat bolt upright in bed. It was a miracle.”

Manoj was so impacted by this that he and his wife went to church to thank the praying couple and later began attending a church in Watford. After a few weeks Manoj finally gave his life to Christ.

“I had a massive conversion experience. I walked into church as one man; and walked out as another. My wife didn’t recognise me and ended up coming to faith as well.

“My love of money went overnight. Now my passion is for sharing the gospel. I work for the Evangelical Alliance leading the South Asian Forum, which encourages churches to reach out to South Asians. I also run a publishing house called Instant Apostle, which provides a platform to release new and existing writers.

“I’m not nearly as much of a mess as I was before – and I have finally found true peace and purpose.”

Filthy Rich by Manoj Raithatha is available for loan from the Torch Library in braille and giant print (both in 2 volumes) and on DAISY audio CD & USB memory stick (6 hrs).

You can also purchase this title in braille, large print and on DAISY audio CD, price £8.99. Kindle price £6.02 from Amazon

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In your quiet time

Daily devotionals

Every Day with Jesus from CWR

On DAISY audio CD or USB memory stick

The November/December edition is entitled A New Perspective.

Why do some Christians suffer and struggle while others seem to sail through?

In this issue Selwyn Hughes takes us on a journey through Psalm 73 where the psalmist wrestles with questions of doubt and confusion.

Starting from a place where he is slipping away from God, the psalmist enters God’s presence and finds a new perspective, allowing him to stride forwards for the one who is the “strength of my heart and my portion for ever”.

Scripture Union’s Daily Bread

In braille and on DAISY audio CD or USB memory stick

Daily Bread is the Bible reading guide that aims to help you hear from God as you read the Bible. If you've ever asked the question, “What possible relevance can this verse have for me today?” or “What difference does this passage make to my life?” then it could be for you...

The December/January edition covers the topics “God acts” from Acts 9-12, “Bitter Fruit” from the mid-part of Isaiah, and “Winds of Change” from John’s Gospel.

The Upper Room from BRF

In large print (17, 20, 25 & 30 point)

The Upper Room is a unique publication, which has a worldwide readership of some three million, with over 70 different editions in 40 languages. The readings and reflections in The Upper Room are written exclusively by the readers themselves who seek to share the insights of their faith with others.

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A word of prayer

Featuring books, prayers and requests on and about prayer.

“I pray this simple prayer”

Amy Boucher Pye recommends a prayer formula devised by a monk from the fourth century

(Source: Woman Alive November 2016 excerpt)

John Cassian lived before the compulsions of the internet and social media, but he knew that the monks under his care battled with distraction. And so he devised a simple formula to help them pray without ceasing – to repeat in their minds Psalm 70:1: “Come to my help, O God; Lord, hurry to my rescue.”

He chose this particular verse as one to keep them focused on God, saying that it carries with it all the feelings we’re capable of and that it can be adapted to every situation. It’s a cry for help to God in the face of danger, a way of expressing our humility and frailty, and it brings with it the assurance that God always hears us and is forever present to help us.

This ancient monk’s advice sounds strikingly modern – if we’re assailed with the passion for eating, or if a headache keeps us from reading, or when sleep eludes us, we can repeat this psalm as a prayer to the Lord. Instead of turning to some sort of screen for distraction rather than to God for help, we could say with Cassian, “I see myself worn down by sleeplessness over many nights and shut away from all the refreshment of my night’s rest. And so I must sigh and pray ‘Come to my help, O God; Lord, hurry to my rescue.’” ...

...I’ve found that when I cannot sleep, or I’m facing temptation, I can pray Psalm 70:1 as a way of re-centring myself in God. Asking the Lord for help reminds me that he is God and I am not, that I need his intervention in my life. Knowing that he can rescue me brings me comfort and peace. While this psalm is not the only prayer I pray, it can be one that returns my spirit to the Lord. I recommend it.

More ideas to try

(Source: Together magazine July-Aug 2016 excerpt)

Make a spiritual scrapbook or memory box.

Put in favourite verses that speak to you of God’s faithfulness, objects that remind you of special moments and words that remind you of answered prayer.

Consider a fast.

Even giving up one meal as a sacrifice of praise can have a significant impact on your life and the lives of others. You can also try different kinds of fast, for example, from conversation (silence), spending (frugality), or social media.

Find a prayer partner.

It needs to be someone you trust enough to be open and honest with, so begin by asking God to show you the right person.

Use a holding cross.

These small wooden crosses fit nicely into your hand and often come with a prayer card. Use it to turn your thoughts to God every day or when situations are difficult and you don’t know how to pray.

Rewrite a psalm

Personalise a psalm with your name or situation. This can be a life-changing activity.

Enjoy God’s creation

Try doing a physical activity such as a walk or doing some gardening and in some way delighting in God at the same time. When your mind wanders, pull it back gently to God’s goodness in your life.

Torch Prayer Partners

Torch is built on prayer. If you would like to become a Torch Prayer Partner, we have several prayer resources to inform and inspire your prayers.

Contact our Client Services for more information.

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Hot off the press

A Selection of titles newly transcribed.

But first...

“This is the best column you will ever read” by Nick Page

(Source: Together magazine July-Aug 2016)

In 1856 the poet Walt Whitman changed publishing forever. His fellow poet, Ralph Waldo Emerson had written a letter to Whitman praising his work and saying “I greet you at the beginning of a great career.” Whitman took this line and had it printed on the spine of the second edition of Leaves of Grass just below the title and the author’s name.

And in doing so, he invented the first ever celebrity book endorsement.

Nowadays you see them everywhere. No novel is complete without a line from a fellow author claiming, “This book made me want to give up writing!” Or, “After reading this book my bowels imploded with delight.”

I’m joking, but not by much. Some time back, The Guardian reported on the ridiculous over-the-top endorsement for a book called To the End of the Land, by David Grossman. A fellow author had written:

“Very rarely, a few times in a lifetime, you open a book and when you close it again nothing can ever be the same. Walls have been pulled down, barriers broken, a dimension of feeling, of existence itself, has opened in you that was not there before. To the End of the Land is a book of this magnitude.”

I’m sure it’s an excellent book. But I doubt it’s a portal to a new dimension of existence. The same kind of hyperbole infects Christian publishing as well. How about this gem from the back of Yancey’s What’s So Amazing About Grace? Where Dr Robert Seiple wrote: “This is beyond doubt the very best book I have read from a Christian author in my life ...”

Frankly, Dr Robert, if this is the best book you’ve ever read from a Christian author, you can’t be that widely read. Good though Yancey’s book is, I think you’ll find that over the course of 2000 years some Christian authors have done better ones. Even folk who you might think would take a more sober view get carried away. Richard Foster wrote of Dallas Willard’s The Divine Conspiracy: “Like Michelangelo’s Sistine Ceiling, [this book] is a masterpiece and a wonder.”

The Divine Conspiracy is a brilliant book. But it’s not Michelangelo-brilliant. I can’t imagine Pope Sixtus IV going, “Hold up Michelangelo, forget the painting, let’s just slap up quotes from Dallas Willard instead.”

Even new Bibles get this sort of treatment. Some years back C.J. Mahaney, President of Sovereign Grace Ministries, wrote this: “I can’t imagine a greater gift to the body of Christ than the ESV Study Bible.”

You can’t imagine a greater gift? What, nothing? What about an end to persecution of Christians around the world, maybe? Or the second coming. I’d have thought that would be quite good for “the body of Christ”, but maybe, as Jesus appeared in the sky, Mr Mahaney would simply look up and murmur: “It’s good, but not as good as the ESV Study Bible ...”

The reality is that these type of endorsements are not really about the book, but the writer. They’re about helping the reader place the writer and work out if they are safe or not. Endorsements tell you who the author’s friends are, and that helps you place them in a tribe. And that’s why they are so over the top, because, by and large, they are written by mates.

Don’t get me wrong. I love it when people say nice things about my books. I’ve used the odd unsolicited endorsement (at least unsolicited by me). I’ve retweeted praise. But, honestly, I’ve never sought them. And, sadly, being clinically English, I am far too embarrassed to ask my friends to read any of my books, let alone praise them.

Of course, you may find endorsements very helpful. You may disagree with this column. But if you do, you will be going against my friend Mr William Shakespeare, who wrote of this piece, “Verily, this is the greatest column ever written.”

Convinced by the pundits?

Our selection of titles this quarter comes with their own endorsements. We hope they will convince you to read them!

The Daniel Prayer by Anne Graham Lotz. Genre: Christian Living

“If you have a deep longing to see God move in our generation in an unprecedented way, then read The Daniel Prayer. It will break up the fallow ground in your heart, creating a yearning for God that only God Himself can fulfil. Thank you, Anne Graham Lotz, for this incredible book that has the capacity to lead us into God-shaking moments in this world.” – Dr Ronnie Floyd, President, Southern Baptist Convention and Senior Pastor Cross Church.

“As a Jewish believer in Yeshua, the Messiah, as a son of the tribe of Judah and a direct descendant of the same Israelites who lived during the days of the prophet Daniel, I strongly recommend The Daniel Prayer. Anne Graham Lotz encourages believers to stand firm and never give up on God. It is within our spirits to pray and believe that the God of Daniel is the same today, according to His Word. Read this book and become a Daniel-like-minded believer! – Major Amir Tsarfati, Israeli Defence Force; founder, Behold Israel Ministry.

Available in braille and giant print (DAISY coming soon) from the Torch Library and to purchase in braille and large print, price £13.99

Then Sings My Soul by Pam Rhodes. Genre: Devotional

“Packed full of fascinating facts, intertwined with inspirational thoughts. Then Sings My Soul is a rich treasure and a riveting read.” – Catherine Campbell, author of Rainbows for Rainy Days.

“I simply love this book! Pam brings our precious old hymns back to life by telling us about the people who wrote them and why. Totally fascinating!” – Jennifer Rees Larcombe, author.

For loan on DAISY audio CD and & USB memory stick & to purchase on DAISY audio CD for £9.99 and on Kindle from Amazon for £5.39

A CD of the hymns featured in the book is also available from Amazon for £9.75 and on MP3 for £7.99

Still Emily by Emily Owen. Genre: Biography

“Words like courageous, persevering and faithful can be thrown around in today’s world as clichéd, lightweight hyperbole. Emily’s candid, honest, painful and hope-filled writings take us deep into what such words really mean. Although the specifics of her

illness are rare, her readable and vulnerable story helps us reflect on what is left when so much on which we build our identity is stripped away; how can the real us not just survive but thrive? In the silence of sudden and complete deafness, Emily shows us that the voice of love – and of God’s love in particular – can still be heard. It is hard to commend this book enough!” – Revd Barry Hill, Diocesan Mission Enabler, Diocese of Leicester.

For loan in braille, giant print, DAISY & on USB and to purchase in braille, large print and DAISY fo £7.99.

The Hardest Thing to Do by Penelope Wilcock. Genre: Fiction - series

This is title number 4 in the Hawk and Dove series.

“When I reached the last page I experienced an overwhelming sense of peace. Abbot John and his monks are not the only ones whose hearts and lives are ripe for change; Wilcock’s legion of readers may find themselves altered as well. I offer my highest praise and most heartfelt recommendation: you will love this novel!” Liz Curtis Higgs, New York Times best-selling author.

“Penelope Wilcock has written a novel as deep and contemplative as the monks whose stories she tells. Her intimate knowledge of medieval monastic life sweeps you into the past, yet the struggles she chronicles are timeless. This book is not toss-away entertainment, it’s literature that pours from a poetic soul. Putting it down at the end of the day was the hardest thing to do.” Bryan M Litfin, Professor of Theology, Moody Bible Institute and author.

The Hawk & the Dove series by Penelope Wilcock: No. 1: The Hawk & the Dove; No. 2: The Wounds of God; No. 3: The Long Fall; No. 4: The Hardest Thing to Do.

These titles are all available from the Torch Library on DAISY audio CD or USB memory stick or can be purchased on DAISY audio Cd for £7.99 each.

The remaining 5 titles in the series will follow shortly. Also available on Kindle from Amazon, price £5.03 each

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General literary news

Christian Resources Together Book Awards

The following titles were voted best in their respective categories by booksellers. Awards were made at the CRT Retailers and Suppliers Retreat at Swanwick in September this year.

Torch had a stand in the exhibition hall to which many booksellers were attracted and signed up to carry Torch products for people who are blind and partially sighted.

This event also presents one of the best opportunities to meet our publishers and see all their best-sellers as well as their latest titles. Lydia also had several opportunities to speak to authors who are great advocates for making books accessible.

Here are the winners and some runner-ups, all of which, bar one, we are delighted to be able to say are available in accessible format from Torch!

Book of the Year:

My Journey So Far by Andrew White - Genre: biography. Available for loan in braille and on DAISY audio CD & USB memory stick or and to purchase in braille and on DAISY audio CD, price £13.48. Also on Kindle from Amazon, price £7.02

 

Devotional Book of the Year:

My Rock My Refuge by Timothy Keller – A year of daily devotionals in the Psalms.

Available for loan in braille and giant print (coming soon on DAISY & USB) and to purchase in braille and large print for £12.09. Also on Kindle from Amazon, price £7.99

 

 

Fiction Book of the Year:

War Room by Chris Fabry and published by Tyndale. This book is available on Kindle from Amazon, price £6.17

The runner up in this section was Saints & Sailors by Pam Rhodes which is the 4th book in her Dunbridge Chronicles and is available on DAISY audio CD & USB memory stick for loan and to purchase on DAISY audio CD, price £7.99. Also on Kindle from Amazon price £4. for loan and to purchase on DAISY, price £7.99 and on Kindle from Amazon price £4.29

Christian Living Book of the Year:

Finding Myself in Britain by Amy Boucher-Pye (Torch has classified this title as biography) available for loan in braille, on DAISY audio CD & USB memory stick and to purchase in braille and on DAISY audio CD price £10.68 and on Kindle from Amazon price £8.49

Talking Newspaper Federation conference

We know many of our readers will also have their local Talking Newspaper but did you know that Torch is an associate member of TNF? Torch produces Journey – a thought for the week specifically for TN’s to download free and send out with their local news. This year at their annual conference in Bristol, we offered the TN’s our Reflections Radio Show CD for their magazines.

Gadgets, Gizmos & Apps

The iDisciple app

The iDisciple app for iOS and Android, offers a “Daily connection with God” in form of Sermons, Daily Devotionals and Life Themes. Authors include Dr Charles Stanley, Joyce Meyer, Brian Houston, Dr Rick Warren, John C Maxwell and Anne Graham-Lotz to name but a few.

According to their website, you can: “Stream commercial-free music from 12 popular genres and listen to one of nine talk radio channels for powerful messages that inspire, encourage, and entertain.”

Sheila Armstrong reviewed the app for us and tells R4A that it is mostly accessible. There is a charge of £3.99 per month for music and extra content.

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On your Christmas bedside table

A selection of Christmas Titles from the Torch Library

The Perfect Gift by Philip Greenslade – Genre: Spirituality

These fascinating, highly readable reflections on the infancy stories are part exposition, part inspiration and present a fresh look at the momentous events of that first Christmas.

For loan in braille, giant print, DAISY & on USB memory stick and to purchase in all media except USB, price £7.00

A Treasury of Christmas Miracles by Karen Kingsbury – Genre: Biography

A collection of real-life stories about people whose lives were changed by the mystery and wonder of Christmas time. In each of these stories, Karen brings undeniable proof of God's presence in our lives.

For loan in braille, giant print, DAISY & on USB memory stick and to purchase in all media except USB, price £6.99

The Beech Bank Girls: Christmas is Coming by Eleanor Watkins – Genre: Christian Fiction, ages 11-15

Christmas is coming! Holly faces the reality of financial crisis at home; Rachel is worried about her sister; a sledging incident shakes the girls - and a very different nativity play brings home the true meaning of Christmas. Family, friendship and faith issues - the Beech Bank Girls face them together in this, their 3rd book.

For loan in braille, giant print, DAISY & on USB memory stick and to purchase in all media except USB, price £5.99

Characters Around the Cradle by Tom Houston – Genre: Study.

Familiar with the Christmas Story? We can still miss the extraordinary human drama surrounding the most remarkable event this world has witnessed. Marvel at the way personal details & great political movements combine to demonstrate God's sovereign control.

For loan in braille, giant print, DAISY & on USB memory stick and to purchase in all media except USB, price £5.99

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