- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: Ron Moses Camarda (June 24, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0615195784
- ISBN-13: 978-0615195780
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,746,980 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Tear in the Desert
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Top Customer Reviews
Padre Camarda shares with us the strength of his faith and the humanity of his emotions as he allows us to glimpse the true miracle of life in a dying soldier's single tear. This is a book about our own journey, insecurities, love, pain. and redemption.
I wasn't sure how people would react when they opened the newspaper on Christmas morning in 2005. The story I had written filled the front page of the Florida Times-Union. And it wasn't your typical warm-and-fuzzy holiday tale. It was set in Fallujah, not Bedford Falls. It was the story of Ron Camarda, a Catholic priest from Jacksonville who had spent the previous Christmas as a Navy reservist chaplain in Iraq. He kept a journal with the names of troops he ministered to. The list grew to about 2,000. Eighty-one with crosses next to them, representing those who died.
This front page had a photo of the journal cupped in the priest's hands, open to a page of names. The headline said, "The Best Christmas Ever."
The reaction was overwhelming. I kept telling people that any praise should go to Father Ron, that it was his story, that I just tried not to mess it up while re-telling it. Several people said he should write a book. And he did.
It's hard to find a different way of looking at war and Iraq. But Father Ron did. In many ways, his perspective unfolds in reverse. It begins with death, with him being there for the last breaths of lives, with him often knowing little more about the person in front of him than maybe a name, rank or detail on a tattoo. It is after their deaths that he learns about their lives, their loved ones -- and their lasting effect on him. The result is a powerful story about war, faith, love and "the best Christmas ever."
Fr. Ron Moses Camarda is a US Navy chaplain who spent time in Iraq. During that time he had both peak experiences of God’s mercy and love as well as periods of absolute pain and sorrow as he ministered to the soldiers and interfaced with families. These interactions with so many of the fallen soldiers and their families are related with much tenderness and love, making us aware once again of the pain and sorrow of mother and fathers, wives and children, and family members who sacrificed so much during the Iraq War.
Fr. Ron is a poet as well as a priest: he intersperses his writings with his feeling, prayers, hopes, anxieties, and fears, making all of us aware that even a priest has these very basic human emotions which are so much a part of who we are as human beings. His prayers are so real; honest conversations with God about everything and every emotion that is going on during his time both before, during, and after his service. He freely expresses his love of God and humanity without reserve or concern for conventional thinking. His language is both gut wrenching and base as well as lofty and lyrical.
It is no wonder that Fr. Ron received the Silver Medal Award from the Military Writers Society of America for this sensitive book. He holds nothing back! Like Fr. Ron, who relates that “I had always feared the Middle East,” I sometimes found that it was difficult to read his writings as the emotion was so raw and real.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An passionate look into the soul of a Chaplain on the front lines in Iraq. As with the book, "Heaven in the midst of Hell", it provides a unique perspective on the... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Err
I am honored to have finished reading the amazing recounting of “Padre’s” experiences. I do not feel worthy to write a review of this incredible book. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Bill Norris, Flying Into The Storm
This book is about a personal journey and healing in the midst of a war. It's not an easy book to read. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Toe Tag
I was honored this past week by rooming at the Military Writer's Society of America's annual writing conference in Dayton, Ohio (September 2013). Read morePublished on October 3, 2013 by W. H. McDonald Jr.
The book was delivered as promised and was in the condition it was advertised. It is good reading and has a meditative quality to it.Published on July 19, 2013 by GTD
I enjoyed this book so much. I love how it was written and felt the pain and sufferings of war. I had the pleasure of being at one of the masses by Father Ron Camarda and he is... Read morePublished on July 9, 2013 by Jean Estry
Fr. Ron is one of the unsung hero's of our time. His book brings to life the tragedy of the war in Iraq.
I loved the book, his insight, heart and poetry. Read more
God works in strange ways. Just when life hits a certain routine and having served in the Naval Reserve for twenty years with his paperwork in for retirement God throws a curve... Read morePublished on May 18, 2012 by Richard C. Geschke