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Gracias: A Latin American Journal Paperback – February 1, 1993


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 188 pages
  • Publisher: Orbis Books (February 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0883448513
  • ISBN-13: 978-0883448519
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #758,125 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Henri Nouwen, a Dutch-born priest and one of the world s most popular spiritual writers, was pastor of the L Arche Daybreak community in Canada. His many best-selling books include Adam; Jesus: A Gospel; and With Burning Hearts: A Meditation on the Eucharistic Life.

More About the Author

Henri Nouwen was born in Holland in 1932 and ordained a Catholic priest in 1957. He obtained his doctorandus in psychology from Nijmegen University in The Netherlands and taught at Notre Dame, Yale, and Harvard. He experienced the monastic life with Trappist monks at the Abbey of the Genesee, lived among the poor in Latin America with the Maryknoll missioners, and was interested and active in numerous causes related to social justice. After a lifetime of seeking, Henri Nouwen finally found his home in Canada, as pastor of L'Arche Daybreak - where people with intellectual disabilities and their caregivers live together in community.

Henri Nouwen wrote over 40 books on spirituality and the spiritual life that have sold millions of copies and been translated into dozens of languages. His vision of spirituality was broad and inclusive, and his compassion embraced all of humankind.

He died in 1996. His work and his spirit live on.

Henri Nouwen pronounced his name "Henry Now-en." For more information on his life and work, please visit www.henrinouwen.org .

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Siri Hall on September 24, 2000
Format: Paperback
September 24, 2000
In Henri Nouwen's journal entries, he captures each moment and thought of his struggle to find God's calling during his journey through Peru and Bolivia. Not only does he describe his own feelings, but also the joys and struggles of the people he came in contact with. His journal depicts the true venture of stepping into mission work or at least stepping outside of our everyday life in search of our place in this world. He gives encouragement to those who are searching and have felt a calling to go out and help others. He opened my eyes to show me that it is not the number of people you help but it is the one heart that you touch that counts.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Patrick J. Jones on February 15, 2010
Format: Paperback
Title: Gracias! A Latin American Journal by Henri J. M. Nouwen

Pages: 188.

Time spent on the "to read" shelf: 9 months.

Days spent reading it: 3 days.

Why I read it: There are multiple steps in why I read Gracias! First, I love Henri Nouwen's writings. Second, I read a few excerpts from Gracias! in a Henri Nouwen collection and found some of his reflections interesting. Third, our youth group went on a short term missions trip to Peru, and Gracias! is about Nouwen's time in Lima, Peru. So it seemed like a great fit for me.

Brief review: Gracias! was a little harder to read than I was anticipating. It's one thing to read a coherent book on a particular topic, it's quite another to read the journal writings of a person as they are developing some of those thoughts.

Henri Nouwen is a Roman Catholic priest who was a successful professor at Yale and Notre Dame. He gave up the academic life and started searching for a different type of ministry. So he went to South America for about 6 months. 3 months in Bolivia for language study, 3 months in Lima, Peru as an exploratory trip to see if he would like to serve there for a longer period of time. Nouwen's insight into human behavior, including his own, is invaluable. He is very open and vulnerable in his writings, which is what draws me to him. However, these journal entries are not a systematic thought about anything in particular. So there are occasional glimpses of great insight. But its in the midst of the mundane of everyday life.

Was it thought provoking? Yes. Was it sometimes boring? Yes. Did it have interesting insights about life and how we live it? Definitely. Am I glad I read it? Mostly. Would I recommend it to others? Not unless they were die-hard Nouwen fans.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have read Henri Nouwen's work before and knew some of his story. This diary was like experiencing a type of personal retreat of my own. He is able to clearly state his interior struggles, his own weaknesses and his humility in such a simple but powerful way. A book that many trying to understand another culture and live in a close relationship with Jesus would benefit greatly by reading this book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Even though I am clergy of a different denomination, I am grateful to have discovered the prophetic support of Rev. Nouwen's work.
I found this book extremely thought provoking in regards to serving the marginalized and looking at the suffering that pastoral serving often entails. It helped my sermon preparation tremendously.
Rev. Nouwen uses journaling as a major way of gaining clarity of thoughts about life issues that are unimaginable and terroristic as he observed others ministering in difficult places during their call to serve in Bolivia and Peru. He journals through the pain of loneliness, depression, and feeling marginalize, until he is able to see God working in those painful situations.
There is not an over abundance of "God talk", that can be a turn off for some, (me not included). However,there is a deep sense of reverence conveyed throughout the book as he experiences the poor as their gratitude toward God is witnessed.
His works may appeal to those seeking inspiration for spiritual transformation. I did not want the book to end so I took extended time to finish the final chapters and "chewed" on the dropped spiritual nuggets.
I plan to read more of his works and have recently ordered "Genius Born of Anguish, The Life & Legacy of Henri Nouwen",by Higgins and Burns in an effort to learn more about his life and spiritual influences.

Rev. Ella
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By NN on March 29, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book and a reliable source of inspiration. I haven't been a big reader of Nouwen, not so interested in books that preach to me. But his journals really reach me. I can identify with the struggles he faces and apply his thoughtful reflections to my life. I recommend this highly to all who can be turned off by traditional spiritual or inspirational reading.
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