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Rise, Let Us Be on Our Way Hardcover – September 28, 2004


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; First Edition edition (September 28, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446577812
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446577816
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,037,366 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Pope John Paul II leads over one billion Catholics worldwide, but he thinks of himself as a loving father figure. In this meditative book, he invokes the titular phrase (words that Jesus Christ used in the Garden of Gethsemane to call his disciples to him) to urge readers to "go forth full of trust in Christ." The Pope describes how he himself has done so and starts this book where Gift and Mystery (1996) left off—with his ordination as a bishop in Poland in 1958. The first chapters are the most strictly autobiographical, but he quickly turns to matters of faith, discussing everything from the spiritual meaning of a bishop’s miter and crosier to the need for clergy to talk with scientists and other intellectuals. Naturally, since he has served as a bishop (of Krakow, of Rome) for almost 50 years, the Pope devotes a lot of space to a bishop’s duties. His discussion of these duties provides openings for him to remember important occasions in his past, such as his pastoral visit to the shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico. Later chapters deal with the Second Vatican Council, which he participated in as a young bishop. The prose style is that of a many-faceted sermon, with Biblical quotations woven throughout and themes such as the importance of telling the truth, staying celibate and giving to charity heavily reinforced. Although the book occasionally feels like a guide to the Episcopal ministry, it’s sure to gratify those hungry for his instruction and inspiring faith, as well as non-Catholics interested in his philosophy.
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About the Author

Karol Wojtyla was born in Wadowice, Poland, on May 18, 1920. He was ordained a priest in 1946, and named auxiliary bishop of Krakow in 1958, and archbishop of Krakow in 1964. On October 16, 1978, he was elected Pope and assumed the name John Paul II. In 1994 he published, together with Vittorio Messori, Crossing the Threshold of Hope. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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I felt the Pope becoming my very own father and arousing my youthful spirit.
S. Burek
Interestingly, Pope John Paul II called Cardinal Adam Sapieha his role model. (p. 133).
Jan Peczkis
That said, I found this to be a very well written and interesting little book.
Dennis Phillips

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

58 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Dennis Phillips on November 24, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I think that it is incumbent on me to preface this review by admitting that it would be extremely difficult for me to award a book written by the Holy Father anything less than five stars. The very high regard I feel for the Papacy and the current occupant of that office may very well cloud my judgment and anyone who reads this review should keep that in mind.

That said, I found this to be a very well written and interesting little book. John Paul II wrote this book for the most part as a book of instruction for his Bishops. Within it's pages he lays out in a very clear way what he thinks the duties of a Bishop are and he does this by telling the story of his years as a Bishop in Poland. The Pope makes it very clear that while the first priority of a Bishop is to preach the Gospel, he must also be a shepherd to his flock. Again and again His Holiness hammers on this point and makes it very clear that he expects his Bishops to get out of their office and be among the people. He is very proud of the fact that even with his Pontifical duties he has visited almost every Parish under his official care as Bishop of Rome.

This book would never have been published in this manner however if it were only useful to Bishops and there is indeed much information here for everyone else. Many people of all faiths are fascinated by the Pope's struggle with the Communist authorities in Poland and many of the stories in this book deal with that subject. There are also a fair number of accounts of the Nazi occupation and the brave efforts of the Polish people to rid themselves of this curse. There is little doubt that the writings of this Pope will be invaluable to future historians as they delve into 20th century Europe.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Sam Adams on March 25, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I always have known that the Holy Father is a theological mastermind. I've read many of his encyclicals, but I never read met him as a person until I read this book. It follows his days from bishop-elect to auxillary, then archbishop, cardinal, and finally pope. He speaks of the importance of the role of bishop, and how he fulfilled the job, both instructing his brother bishops to follow certain things, but he also says not to make the same mistakes, and mentions them.

I feel now, that I know Karol Wojtyla the man, and I love him like a father.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By S. Burek on April 20, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This book captured my spirit. I felt the Pope becoming my very own father and arousing my youthful spirit. I felt for the humiliation the Church and the people in Poland experienced during those years of Hitler's invasion and Communism.

John Paul II speaks of his interests, circumstances, the courage of others that influenced him, and God's words confirming him and leading him onward.

All his life journey, like ours, is in the hands of God no matter what prevails.

I was impressed, but not surprised to understand how prayerful and dedicated John Paul II was to the spiritual life, (of Christ)connecting to others, the circumstances he had before him, and rising up to meet them with acceptance.

The book is for all; no matter you are a bishop, a student, or a "nobody". We are all the same to God.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By FrKurt Messick HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 5, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Following his frank and forthright conversations in 'Crossing the Threshold of Hope', Pope John Paul II wrote more explicitly on his vocation and role as a bishop, hoping through his words to both explain to the laity and clergy, as well as teach those who were fellow-bishops (albeit without the papal authority he himself carried) what it is like to be a bishop.

My favourite part of the book is the first section; being someone who has spent the greater part of his life in one form or another of discernment of vocation, it is fascinating to see what vocational aspects are most relavent to a pope. From both the practical aspect of knowing this particular pope, as well as the general aspect of learning more about what his vision of what a bishop and pope should be, John Paul II has provided an interesting insight into why he did the things he did.

Vocation is a mystery, and authority from God is also a mystery. It might not seem so from outside, but it is a heavy burden with which to be entrusted. 'Do you know what you have done?' This is a question that might be asked of the cardinals by a new pope; this is a question we might ask ourselves. However, John Paul II recasts it in asking if we know what God has done for us, in the midst of all the world's troubles and joys.

The gospel of John records, 'You did not choose me, but I chose you.' Pope John Paul II, far from being a perfect person, was nonetheless a good and faithful servant to his vision of what he was chosen to be, and worked to bear the fruit of his ministry that will last. This book explains that this was important to him, and will stand as a testimony of sorts to what he expects the leaders of the church to be and to do.
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Steven K. Szmutko VINE VOICE on December 31, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Pope John Paul II provides a thoughtful meditation combining autobiography with matters of faith and devotion. Although addressed in many respects to his brother bishops, he reminds everyone of the importance of vocation and fidelity and the book speaks to all who seek a more intimate relationship with God. RISE, LET US BE ON OUR WAY begins where his previous book, GIFT AND MYSTERY, leaves off with his ordination as a bishop in the late 1950's. He chronicles the challenges of ministering in then communist Poland. Later, he addresses his participation in Vatican II, a pivotal moment of his spiritual and ministerial life.

The integration of scripture and personal history provides a unique glimpse of not only the pontiff, but of the man who has served as spiritual head of the Catholic Church for many years. He reminds all, clerics and laity alike, of the need for openness and communication with all people. The importance of the pastoral role of bishops, and indeed all people, cannot be minimized.

The book, written in the Pope's unique style, often requires a little effort and rereading in order to fully grasp the richness of his thought, but the richness and scriptural fidelity of his prose make this a valuable addition to anyone's library. It is a book that can speak not only to Catholics, but to anyone who seeks to gain a greater intimacy with God.
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