Religion (200)

General Comments

This class provides information about the beliefs, attitudes, and practices of individuals and groups with respect to the ultimate nature of existence and relationships within the context of revelation, deity, and worship.

Religion is not a large part of the collection; however, the collection strives to provide both knowledge of world religions through sacred texts and general works, as well as guides to spiritual growth. This collection emphasizes Christianity through a collection for and of the faithful, rather than of the pastoral, dogmatic, or internal affairs of the Church.

Development Plan

  • 200 Religion. A small collection of information about world religions such as Buddhism, Islam, and other major religions is developed and maintained with an emphasis on general Christianity sources.
  • 210 Natural theology. An emphasis on creationism/evolution and secular humanism sources is maintained.
  • 220 Bible. A collection of different editions of the Bible and guides to reading the Bible needs to be developed and maintained. A collection of Bible stories for children is maintained. Sources examining the Old or New Testament exclusively are appropriate, as are some basic sources about the ancient scriptures not included in the Biblical cannon. However, the collection steers clear of scholarly analysis.
  • 230 Christian theology. An emphasis on the life of Jesus and on resurrection, judgment, and immortality is maintained. Other theological topics may also be collected (e.g., salvation, faith, healing, spiritual beings).
  • 240 Christian moral and devotional literature. Emphasis on devotional literature on Christian life and practice is maintained.
  • 250 Local church and religious orders. A very small collection, with a representation of homiletic (preaching) and other pastoral concerns is maintained.
  • 260 Social and ecclesiastical theology. This section is maintained as a very small collection, with emphasis on Christianity and politics, including televangelism.
  • 270 Historical, geographic, persons treated of organized Christian church. A small collection with a strong emphasis on basic history of Christianity is maintained.
  • 280 Christian denominations and sects. Works in this class are developed and maintained, though excessive emphasis on sources relating to any one sect is avoided. Books relating to any religion's curriculum are not collected.
  • 290 Comparative religion and religions other than Christianity. A broad representation of myths from many cultures is maintained, with emphasis on Greek and Roman myths. Native American religion sources are maintained, as well as a core of current Islamic information. Developed and maintained are cult sources and sources about the growth of spiritual life in children.

Influencing Factors

Purchases and buying patterns are determined in large part by:
  • electronic/Internet sources availability.
  • new works.
  • budget constraints.
  • circulation statistics.
  • patron requests.
  • present and potential relevance to the community.
  • shelf space.


  • A core of world religion sources is retained.
  • Before the discard of older versions of the Bible or mythology sources, each is carefully evaluated for use, authority, and reputation.