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Mercy in the City: How to Feed the Hungry, Give Drink to the Thirsty, Visit the Imprisoned, and Keep Your Day Job Paperback – January 14, 2014

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Kerry Weber is one of the liveliest, brightest, most provocative and most articulate voices on the Catholic scene today.  With stories that are both profound and lighthearted (and often at the same time) her marvelous new book will help you locate mercy in your daily life.  This is that rare book that will indeed make you laugh and cry, but also pray and serve.  Highly recommended."
- James Martin, SJ author of My Life with the Saints and Jesus: A Pilgrimage



"With wit and wisdom, Kerry Weber  explores what mercy means in the everyday world. Her clear, spare style  reaches the heart and makes one seek just one more brief chapter before putting the book down. Weber focuses on Lent, but this literary treat holds  nuggets for all year long."
- Sister Mary Ann Walsh
Sister of Mercy of the Americas
Director of Media Relations, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops




"This engaging book will take you to the heart of what it means to try to practice mercy in a cruel world. It helps us to remember that so much of what we take for granted -- food, water to drink, clothing, and shelter -- are a luxury to many, even in a land of plenty. From a soup line and homeless shelter to death row on San Quentin, the author makes us see the humanity of those we'd prefer to ignore. And if you're looking for a book that cites both Basil the Great and 'The Muppets Take Manhattan,' this is for you!"
- Kathleen Norris, author of The Cloister Walk and Acedia and Me


"If 'change the world' is on your to do list, then Mercy in the City should be on your reading list. Kerry Weber's work is instructive, inspirational, filled with heart, and -- perhaps most importantly -- destined to rock your world. If you've ever desired to be Christ to those in need, but didn't quite know how to make it happen in the context of a busy schedule, this is the book for you!"
- Lisa M. Hendey, author of The Grace of Yes and founder of CatholicMom.com


"You feel hopeful, excited and inspired about Lent after reading her book. Moreover, you want to try and complete the Corporal Works of Mercy just like Kerry does. Her honesty about the challenges she faced and the realizations she reached is refreshing to read."
- Melissa Stevens, Catholic Relief Services



 “Kerry Weber’s Mercy in the City is a must-read book for any contemporary Christian, but especially those in their twenties or thirties, looking to connect with their faith in a practical way. Like Pope Francis, who has called us to refocus on the mercy of God, Weber makes this central Gospel principle tangible with her relatable, insightful, and at times humorous delivery. You will love this book and be challenged by it too!”
-- Daniel P. Horan, OFM, author, The Last Words of Jesus: A Meditation on Love and Suffering 


"Though Catholic in tradition, Weber’s book is catholic in spirit, that is, it provides a vision of everyday saintliness lived out by one who sees herself as being far from saintly. This is its strength and its inspiration."
-- Bruce Epperly, Living A Holy Adventure


 "Weber strives to be a contemplative in action, a person who finds God in all things, and who seeks out the liturgical practices of the Church to nourish the desire to give of herself in imitation of Christ. This sister in faith can help to strengthen those who are still finding their way in the Church, or perhaps who have even lost their way for a time. Mercy, she reminds us, is at the heart of Jesus’ mission."
- Tim Muldoon, author of The Ignatian Workout

"In her concise, quick moving, and often funny book, Weber chronicles her experience of giving up sweets, alcohol, and - the real kicker- trying to complete all the corporal works of mercy in the 40(ish) days before Easter."
- US Catholic Magazine

"If you take even one thing away from this book, you’ll be a better person and a better Catholic."
- Our Sunday Visitor
"There is a renewed spirit of service sweeping through the Catholic Church under the leadership of Pope Francis -- and Mercy in the City is a simply wonderful expression of how to go about carrying out that commission to service in the contemporary world of today."
- Midwest Book Review

About the Author

Kerry Weber is a Mercy Associate and Managing Editor of America magazine. She is an alumna of the Mercy Volunteer Corps and of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She lives in New York City.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Loyola Press (January 14, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0829438920
  • ISBN-13: 978-0829438925
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #128,716 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Kerry Weber is the managing editor of America, the national, Catholic, weekly journal published by the Jesuits. She began her involvement with the Catholic press at 16, when she joined the summer staff of the diocesan newspaper and television program in Springfield, Mass. Following her graduation from Providence College, she spent one year as a full-time volunteer with the Mercy Volunteer Corps. Through MVC she worked as a special-education teacher in St. Michaels, Ariz., on the Navajo Nation. Kerry then worked as an associate editor for Catholic Digest magazine before moving to New York City, where she earned a master's degree from the Columbia Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Kerry deepened her connection to the Mercy charism when she became a Mercy Associate with the Sisters of Mercy Mid-Atlantic Community. Her interests include Flannery O'Connor, Bruce Springsteen, hiking, tea, and sheep.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By KD on February 1, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a delightful and soul-stirring book. It is simultaneously light and easy to read, while being full of traditional wisdom from the saints. This book fits beautifully with Pope Francis' calls to mercy and service of the poor… certainly a happy coincidence of the Holy Spirit, because Kerry must have tackled the Corporal Works of Mercy as a Lenten project either prior to his election or at the very beginning of his pontificate.

Having been educated in an elementary school run by the Sisters of Mercy, it was a pleasure to read some of the quotes from their founder and grow in appreciation for how this charism must have affected my mother and grandmother. Both are women of mercy, who counted the sisters as friends and colleagues in the school. Though my grandmother passed 15 years ago, I felt like I was able to see a new layer in who she was- perhaps this mercy charism that was so present in our local church formed the saintly grandma that I knew more than I ever would have realized without this book.

I will be recommending this book to my college students and the parishioners- especially young adults- who are at the campus ministry center where I work. This book is a delight, and is the perfect length!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Lisa M. Hendey VINE VOICE on January 30, 2014
Format: Paperback
If "change the world" is on your to do list, then "Mercy in the City" should be on your reading list. Kerry Weber's work is instructive, inspirational, filled with heart, and -- perhaps most importantly -- destined to rock your world. If you've ever desired to be Christ to those in need, but didn't quite know how to make it happen in the context of a busy schedule, this is the book for you!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By LB1017 on February 23, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very well written. Thought-provoking and humorous. A combination not often found. Made me want to be a better Catholic but not in a manner that made me feel guilty or unworthy. Often, I felt as if Ms. Weber had crawled inside of my head with her questions about our faith and how to live it often mirroring my own. I am so glad to have found this book. What a 'near to Lent' blessing! Thank you for your words.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Paul Snatchko on February 11, 2014
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With compelling accounts from her own life, Kerry Weber superbly describes the joys and challenges of being an active Catholic young adult in New York City. Her Lenten journey of doing all the Corporal Works of Mercy made for an excellent read!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Anna on January 12, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read this in one sitting and now want to go back and re-read.
Thank you Kerry for a refreshingly honest reflection on living mercy.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Stuart Dunn TOP 500 REVIEWER on May 26, 2014
Format: Paperback
Mercy in the City is a book that I received by mistake. In fact, it was a book I wasn't even sure I wanted. I had never heard of the author, Kerry Weber, and I generally make it a practice not to read a Catholic book unless I've read the author before, or it has a ringing endorsement from someone I trust. Well, as the old saying goes, "You can't judge a book by its cover," and I shouldn't have been so snobby toward this book.

Mercy in the City is more than just a guide on how to live out the Corporal Works of Mercy in your day-to-day life, it is one young woman's personal journey through Lent as she attempts to live them out. For those unfamiliar with the Corporal works of mercy, they are feed the hungry; give drink to the thirsty; clothe the naked; shelter the homeless; visit the sick; visit the imprisoned; and bury the dead. The book is written in a casual tone with a first-person point of view and reads like a running diary. This makes it a more welcoming and inviting read, especially for younger adults.

Chapter 11 "In which I ignore a homeless man and converse with a homeless man" spoke the most to me. I, like most people, am not comfortable with homeless people and how to help them. I was raised to not make eye contact and politely decline giving them money when asked. The reason for this is the stereotype that they will just spend it on alcohol and drugs. Well, Ms. Weber not only shows us how it is possible to feed hungry, she also teaches us not to compartmentalize our lives. We cannot adopt the attitude of, "This is when I deal with homeless people, this is when I feed the hungry, and then I am done."

This book was a pleasant surprise to read. Ms. Weber put her Lenten journey out there for the world to see.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By TigerKnightPirate on July 7, 2014
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I really enjoyed this book, though not for the reasons I bought it. The description led me to believe that it would focus more specifically on a collection of ready-to-implement suggestions for getting more involved in charitable work in one's own community (at least that's what I took away from the "How to..." In the title).

When I came to appreciate its structure as at of a memoir, rather than a guidebook, I was initially disappointed, but I am quite glad I stuck with it. Ms. Weber writes very engagingly, and I was eager to return to her work each night in my downtime. Her stories of a young single woman in NYC trying to complete works form every category of the works of mercy enumerated in the Sermon on the Mount are touching and challenging. Not a How-to, for sure, but definitely a "couldn't-you...?," in an inspirational, and not in the least heavy-handed way.
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