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Customer Review

37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Boyle takes you into his world, July 15, 2010
By 
This review is from: Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion (Hardcover)
I wasn't sure what to expect when I opened up the book, Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion by Gregory Boyle, a Jesuit Priest and Founder/Executive Director of Homeboy Industries, an organization that provides jobs, job training, and encouragement to those wanting to remove themselves from gang participation. Although there were certain areas I disagreed with Boyle regarding his view of scripture, the book as a whole was well worth the read.

Pastor Gregory Boyle has a very witty way of telling stories of his involvement with gang members and their families. His stories about suffering are both full of laughter and sorrow. The message of this book is bold: Everyone of us - whether gang member, flight attendant, or car shop owner; can break down walls and be a part of the same "jurisdiction". His stories grabbed at my heart and pulled me in as if I was there. The book challenged me to think outside of my box and reconsider the unlovely among me. How can I show them love?

The thing I loved the most about this book is the revealing nature of these gangsters, or as Boyle calls them, "Homies". When you stripped away the anger and pain, you got a view of the things they carry so close to them: shame, defeat, loss, fear, and a basic need to be loved. It would be easy to judge such people as "lost causes" or "hopeless", but Boyle allows us to see things in his world and the view is amazing.

Boyle has chosen to "live among them" and lets us into his sorrowful, violent, and sometimes comical world. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to see the world through compassionate eyes, at the same time being able to laugh at some of the hilarious stories that Boyle tells. All proceeds from the sale of this book go back to Homeboy Industries where "homies" are given the tools to get on their feet and leave their life of violence. It's one more reason I applaud Gregory Boyle and his ever-growing compassionate heart.
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