I liked reading all the books but found Wrinkle in Time to be the least interesting due its simple nature. I'm also not a fan of science fiction. My Name is Asher Lev, Uncle Tom's Cabin and The Power and the Glory were all thought provoking and demonstrated the strong influence of religion in peoples lives.The authors raise serious ethical issues that require the reader to question one's own values.
The qualities of loyalty, kindness, commitment, strength and love are demonstrated in Meg, Uncle Tom and Asher Lev. The contrasting characters of the priest and the Lieutenant who are steeped in evil make us appreciate the other virtues even more. I think it is appropriate that we read Greene's book at the end because the characters became so much more distasteful in comparison to the other stories.
In all the books, it didn't matter whether the religion of the characters was Christian or Jewish and the emphasis was more on the organized nature of the religions and the spiritual nature o f the individuals. This approach made it easy to apply the ideas to all of humanity.
and I liked that. Reading these books made it easier to see how religion is used for both good and bad purposes and that not everyone needs religion to be a spiritual and decent human being.
One addition to the class that might be valuable is including a book about Islam or an Eastern religion. It would also be interesting to know more about your opinions on the various subjects. I enjoyed the class and feel I learned more about human nature from the stories and good discussions from the class. These books also emphasize the importance of forming our own ideas from the knowledge we are given, having faith in our conclusions and trying not to hurt anyone in the process.