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The spiritual diaries of Pope St John Paul II - published for the first time ever in English. The most intimate insight into the longest-serving pontiff of our time. Ten years after his death, the popularity and devotion towards John Paul II, the pope who helped bring down communism in his native Poland, the great statesman, and the most-travelled pope in history, remains as strong as ever. Since his early years as a priest in the 1960s, up until 2003, two years before his death, the pope kept a spiritual diary, recording his reflections on God, life, spirituality, the problems facing the church - and his own struggles. Never intended for publication, these diaries were entrusted before his death to his personal secretary, who saw fit to have them published as they represent an unprecedented and important testament to the spirituality of this Christian leader, adored to this day by Catholics and non-Catholics alike.
On 28 February 2013, a 600-year-old tradition was shattered: the conservative Pope Benedict XVI made a startling announcement. He would resign. Reeling from the news, the College of Cardinals rushed to Rome to congregate in the Sistine Chapel to pick his successor. Their unlikely choice? Francis, the first non-European pope in 1,200 years, a one time tango club bouncer, a passionate football fan, a man with the common touch.
From the prize-winning screenwriter of The Theory of Everything and Darkest Hour, this is a fascinating, revealing and often funny tale of two very different men whose destinies converge with each other - they both live in the Vatican - and the wider world.
How did these two men become two of the most powerful people on Earth? What's it like to be the Pope? What does the future hold for the Catholic Church and its 1 billion followers?
The Two Popes is a dual biography that masterfully combines these two popes' lives into one gripping narrative. From Benedict and Francis' experiences of war in their homelands - when they were still Joseph and Jorge - and the sexual abuse scandal that continues to rock the Church to its foundations, to the intrigue and the occasional comedy of life in the Vatican, The Pope glitters with the darker and the lighter details of life inside one of the world's most opaque but significant institutions.
Rudolf Steiner -- educator, architect, artist, philosopher and agriculturalist -- ranks amongst the most creative and prolific figures of the early twentieth century. Yet he remains a mystery to most people. This is the first truly popular biography of the man behind the ideas, written by a sympathetic but critical outsider. Steiner is widely known for what he left behind: a network of Waldorf schools, biodynamic farming, Camphill schools and villages and pioneering work in holistic health and environmental research. Although his achievements are felt all over the world, few people understand this unusual figure. Steiner's own writings fill several bookcases, but are often dense and 'insider' in tone. Gary Lachman tells Steiner's story lucidly and with great insight. He presents Steiner's key ideas in a readable, accessible way, tracing his beginning as a young intellectual in the ferment of fin de siecle culture to the founding of his own metaphysical teaching, called anthroposophy. This book is a full-bodied portrait of one of the most original philosophical and spiritual luminaries of the last two centuries.
In this deeply revealing and engaging autobiography, Herb Silverman tells his iconoclastic life story. He takes the reader from his childhood as an Orthodox Jew in Philadelphia, where he stopped fasting on Yom Kippur to test God's existence, to his adult life in the heart of the Bible Belt, where he became a legendary figure within America's secular activist community and remains one of its most beloved leaders. Never one to shy from controversy, Silverman relates many of his high-profile battles with the Religious Right, including his decision to run for governor of South Carolina to challenge the state's constitutional provision that prohibited atheists from holding public office. "Candidate Without a Prayer "offers an intimate portrait of a central player in today's increasingly heated culture wars. It will be sure to charm both believers and nonbelievers alike, and will lead all those who care about the separation of church and state to give thanks.
Louis Jacobs was Britain's most gifted Jewish scholar. A Talmudic genius, outstanding teacher and accomplished author, cultured and easy-going, he was widely expected to become Britain's next Chief Rabbi. Then controversy struck. The Chief Rabbi refused to appoint him as Principal of Jews' College, the country's premier rabbinic college. He further forbade him from returning as rabbi to his former synagogue. All because of a book Jacobs had written some years earlier, challenging from a rational perspective the traditional belief in the origins of the Torah. The British Jewish community was torn apart. It was a scandal unlike anything they had ever previously endured. The national media loved it. Jacobs became a cause celebre, a beacon of reason, a humble man who wouldn't be compromised. His congregation resigned en masse and created a new synagogue for him in Abbey Road, the heart of fashionable 1960s London. It became the go-to venue for Jews seeking reasonable answers to questions of faith. A prolific author of over 50 books and hundreds of articles on every aspect of Judaism, from the basics of religious belief to the complexities of mysticism and law, Louis Jacobs won the heart and affection of the mainstream British Jewish community. When the Jewish Chronicle ran a poll to discover the Greatest British Jew, Jacobs won hands down. He said it made him feel daft. Reason To Believe tells the dramatic and touching story of Louis Jacobs's life, and of the human drama lived out by his family, deeply wounded by his rejection.
This is the true story of Ora-Jay and Irene Eash, Amish farmers from northwest Montana whose lives changed in an instant when a semi-truck struck the family buggy, killing their two young daughters. After the accident, the couple turned to their Amish community for comfort, but they remained haunted by the thought that they might not see their girls again in heaven. Would their deeds be good enough? Eventually Ora-Jay and Irene learned that grace---not works---was enough to ensure their place in eternity. But with that knowledge came the realization that they could no longer live in an Amish community that didn t share this precious belief. Could they sever their connection to the Amish family they loved? This is the story of their journey to the hope that is heaven, a hope stronger than the loss of children, family, and a way of life. Fans of Amish fiction will appreciate such a real-life look into the Amish community, co-written by bestselling author Tricia Goyer, and readers of all kinds will resonate with this tale of courage, resilience, and the redemption found in the grace of Jesus."
New insight into the Catholicism in C S Lewis's writings.
A one of its kind biography, The Only Life is the story of a woman who blazed a path for herself and others in the presence of one of the greatest mystics, Osho. Growing up an ordinary Indian girl in British India, and rendered powerless in a domineering world, Laxmi went on to become Osho’s ﬁrst disciple and secretary.
What follows is an account of not just a life, but of the massive international movement which grew around Osho in the 1970s and 80s—one that Laxmi was at the helm of. Equally, what unfolds is a narrative, full of pathos, where her protégé usurps her place. Heartbroken, ostracised and later banished, she wanders the wastelands of America in isolation, seeking to rediscover herself by choosing devotion for her master over despair.
The Only Life is an extraordinary account of a life of starkly contrasting ups and downs. Laxmi’s journey and the way she lived continues to serve as a crucial illustration for dealing with life’s adversities. It shows that the path of kindness, devotion and awareness trumps all in these present chaotic and precarious times.
Leonidas Polk is one of the most fascinating figures of the Civil War. Consecrated as a bishop of the Episcopal Church and commissioned as a general into the Confederate army, Polk's life in both spheres blended into a unique historical composite. Polk was a man with deep religious convictions but equally committed to the Confederate cause. He baptized soldiers on the eve of bloody battles, administered last rites and even presided over officers' weddings, all while leading his soldiers into battle. Historian Cheryl White examines the life of this soldier-saint and the legacy of a man who unquestionably brought the first viable and lively Protestant presence to Louisiana and yet represents the politics of one of the darkest periods in American history.
Eugenio Pacelli, Pope Pius XII, is one of the most studied but least understood popes of the twentieth century while his pontificate remains the most turbulent and controversial. Although there is a general consensus that he faced serious problems during his tenure-fascist aggression, the Second World War, the Nazi genocide of the Jews, the march of communism, and the Cold War-there is disagreement on his response to these developments. Applauded by some as an "apostle for peace" for his attempt to prevent the outbreak of war, he has been denounced by others as an "advocate of appeasement" for this same effort. Praised by both Christian and Jews for his "Crusade of Charity" during the war, he was denounced by many for his "silence" during the Holocaust. These conflicting interpretations, dubbed the Pius Wars, are often narrow in focus, lack objectivity, and have shed more heat than light. Written by one of the foremost historians of Pius XII, the present biographical study, unlike the greater part of the vast and growing historiography of Pope Pius XII, is a balanced and nonreactive account of his life and times. Its focus is not on the pope's silence during the Holocaust, though it does address the issue in a historical and objective framework. This is a biography of the man as well as the pope. It probes the roots of his traditionalism and legalism, his approach to modernity and reformism in Church and society, and the influences behind his policies and actions. This book is the first biography of Eugenio Pacelli to appear in English since the opening of the papers of the pontificate of Pius XI (1922-1939), in which Pacelli served as nuncio to Germany and secretary of state, along with the publication of the memories of figures close to Papa Pacelli.
This is the first edition of the correspondence of Philip Quaque, a prolific writer of African descent whose letters provide a unique perspective on the effects of the slave trade and its abolition in Africa.
Born around 1740 at Cape Coast, in what is now Ghana, Quaque was brought to England by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. In 1765 he became the first African ordained as an Anglican priest. He returned to Africa and served for fifty years as the society's missionary and also as chaplain to the Company of Merchants Trading to Africa (CMTA) at Cape Coast Castle, the principal slave-trading site of the CMTA.
Quaque sent more than fifty letters to London and North America reporting on his successes and failures, his relationships with European and African authorities, and his observations on the effects of the American and French revolutions on Africa. The regular references to his African mission in popular magazines made Quaque well known in the English-speaking world. Initially writing when the transatlantic slave trade went largely unquestioned, Quaque in his later letters traces the period of abolitionist fervor leading up to the ban in 1808. Although his employers supported and facilitated slavery, Quaque's letters reveal his evolving opposition to both slavery and the slave trade, particularly in his correspondence with early abolitionists.
Quaque's life offers a fascinating perspective on transatlantic identity, missionary activity, precolonial European involvement in Africa, the early abolition movement, and Cape Coast society.
From life to death and back, one man tells his tale. By relating one man's amazing tale of triumph over death on multiple occasions, this book brings a fresh perspective to near death experience literature. David Bennett, once a brash young commercial diver whose personal philosophy was "cut your way through life to survive," was caught in a violent storm off the California coast one night where he drowned. While technically "dead," he met beings of light, relived his life, and peeked into his future, resulting in a complete paradigm shift for him. Later, he discovered he had stage IV lung and bone cancer-so advanced that his spine collapsed. Miraculously, he survived once again, and this second close call taught him even more about living, loving, and how to find purpose in his life. Voyage of Purpose brings readers right into the heart of the near-death experience, including the sensations of dying, being surrounded by the light, and meeting the Soul Family. Part memoir and part guide for achieving spiritual growth, this book shows how to integrate the most traumatic of incidents into one's spiritual path in order to live a more meaningful life.
In 1974 Charles W. Colson pleaded guilty to Watergate-related
offenses and, after a tumultuous investigation, served seven months
in prison. In his search for meaning and purpose in the face of the
Watergate scandal, Colson penned "Born Again." This unforgettable
memoir shows a man who, seeking fulfillment in success and power,
found it, paradoxically, in national disgrace and prison.
The remarkable true story of a young Billy Graham and his best friend who walked away from the faith.
We all know how the story ends but how did it begin? Before he
became a household name, and "America's Pastor," he was simply
known as Billy. When he wasn't playing baseball, he was discovering
his love for Christian ministry. His best friend, Charles
Templeton, was already on track to be a highly successful
evangelist and the two young men began strategizing on how to win
the world for Christ. That plan takes a drastic turn, however, when
Templeton deserts the faith and becomes an atheist. The impact of
this decision on a young Billy Graham is immeasurable and
agonizing. Charles would later become the great intellectual
architect for agnosticism and atheism. Billy would become the
single greatest messenger for the Christian Gospel. It is one of
the great untold dramas between friends - Atheism vs Christianity,
betrayal and hope.
For over fifty years, Anthony Bloom (1914-2003 was head of the russian Orthodox Church ihn Great Britain (Patriarchate of Moscow). Arriving in Britain in 1949 he played a major part of ecumenical work and exerted a wide influence through his broadcasts, writings (he is the author of several spiritual classics), and reputation as a spiritual leader. His writings reflect both the essence of Orthodoxy and his own experience of the struggle to live Christianity on a daily basis.
One day a Georgia-born son of an Orthodox rabbi discovers that his enthusiasm for Judaism is flagging. He observes the Sabbath, he goes to synagogue, and he even flies to New York on weekends for a series of "speed dates" with nice, eligible Jewish girls. But, something is missing. Looking out of his window and across the street at one of the hundreds of churches in Atlanta, he asks, "What would it be like to be a Christian?"
So begins Benyamin Cohen's hilarious journey that is "My Jesus Year"--part memoir, part spiritual quest, and part anthropologist's mission. Among Cohen's many adventures (and misadventures), he finds himself in some rather unlikely places: jumping into the mosh-pit at a Christian rock concert, seeing his face projected on the giant JumboTron of an African-American megachurch, visiting a potential convert with two young Mormon missionaries, attending a Christian "professional wrestling" match, and waking up early for a sunrise Easter service on top of Stone Mountain--a Confederate memorial and former base of operations for the KKK.
During his year-long exploration, Cohen sees the best and the worst of Christianity-- #8212;from megachurches to storefront churches; from crass commercialization of religion to the simple, moving faith of the humble believer; from the profound to the profane to the just plain laughable. Throughout, he keeps an open heart and mind, a good sense of humor, and takes what he learns from Christianity to reflect on his own faith and relationship to God. By year's end, to Cohen's surprise, his search for universal answers and truths in the Bible Belt actually make him a better Jew.
From the continent of Africa come a wealth of saints and other inspirational people included in the Catholic tradition. Some are well-known, like Saints Augustine, a doctor of the church, and his mother, Monica, while others may be unknown to us, such as Blessed Daudi Okelo and Blessed Jildo Irwa, twentieth-century Ugandan martyrs. Regardless of popularity, each holy person included in "African Saints, African Stories" displays perseverance in faith and can inspire us all.
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