cover image My Vertical Neighborhood: How Strangers Became a Community

My Vertical Neighborhood: How Strangers Became a Community

Lynda MacGibbon. InterVarsity, $17 trade paper (158p) ISBN 978-0-8308-4740-2

MacGibbon debuts with a delightful account of her experience trying to more literally live out the commandment “love your neighbor.” Several years ago, MacGibbon, an InterVarsity Canada vice president, needed a life change and decided to sell her suburban home and move to an apartment in downtown Toronto. In her new neighborhood, she set out to follow Christ’s command to love her neighbor as herself, and after a work colleague with a similar desire moved in to her building, the two began hosting Monday night dinners, a monthly writing group, and a Bible study. MacGibbon paints a vivid portrait of the neighbors that became close friends, such as a gay man who believed in God, but not in Jesus; a divorced mom of a young boy; and a couple who lay bare their 40 years of marriage within the writer’s group. MacGibbon’s empathy and energy for turning strangers into friends allows for many moving insights: “Each person has a role to play in seeding, strengthening, and sustaining relationships among us.” This touching exploration will appeal to fans of Henri Nouwen. (Mar.)