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The Church of Mercy Paperback – April 25, 2014
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"Refreshingly humane, focusing on people rather than institutions. Admirers of Francis and students of church history alike will find this a useful introduction to the pontiff’s thought."
From the Inside Flap
--Pope Francis, Homily on Palm Sunday, 24 March 2013
"The Church does not rest solely beneath the shadow of our steeple; rather, she embraces a vast number of peoples and nations who profess the same faith, are nourished by the same Eucharist, and are served by the same pastors."
--Pope Francis, General Audience, 9 October 2013
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Top customer reviews
Without being simplistic, the Church of Mercy takes the readers to the fundamentals of Christianity. The reader is reminded that by emulating the teaching of Christ, caring for the poor, demonstrating compassion, avoiding materialism etc. one leads to a more fulfilling life and the life God wants us to lead.
In one chapter, Pope Francis admonishes the clergy to "walk" with congregants. Specifically, to "walk" ahead when needed to show the way, "walk" alongside to be supportive, and to "walk" in back to make sure no one is left behind. While his advice is directed at the clergy, it is an example for lay Christians to follow. This is just one example where, in a new way, Pope Francis explains what the reader already knows about the Christian faith.
One of the fundamentals of the Christian faith is that sins are forgiven. The Church of Mercy acknowledges this but does spend a lot of time on the issue. This is good. In our daily life, most of our behavior is neither sinful not saintly, A church that stresses "we are all sinners" is a church that is unattractive to the vast majority of individuals who, in the daily lives, are just going about their daily routine, neither saints nor sinners.
In the Church of Mercy, Pope Francis reasserts the church's obligation to the poor. He also recognizes that charity includes the dignity and importance of work. Work provides financial stability and decreases the need for charity in the first place.
As noted, in places the Church of Mercy Pope Francis is directing clergy how to better priests or bishops. (This reviewer found it enlightening that Pope Francis felt it necessary to remind bishops to promptly return phone calls from priests). However, the general reader is probably not particularly interested in the "CEO" aspects of being a Pope or Cardinal and this weakens the book.
Also, the last chapter is the chapter is a very Catholic view on the Virgin Mary. Non-Catholics won't get much out of this chapter. As the final chapter is primarily of interest to Catholics and some of Church of Mercy is directed specifically to the clergy, this reviewer can give it only four stars. Pope Francis, the man, however, gets five.
have retained their faith. With this in mind I ordered Pope Francis' book. I was not disappointed. The utter lack of elitism, privilege
is their right from the start. His " who am I to judge" approach showcases this man's Goodness. Have you washed anyone's
feet lately? I haven't-this Pope has! Throughout the book this man's love and compassion and mercy is openly on display. More
men like Francis are needed in this world. I am not easily moved by cinematic or political personalities. I have been moved by this
man's writings and heartily recommend that you look into the heart of Pope Francis by reading his book.
As she did with Saint Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin, Mary of Nazareth offers [us] maternal comfort and love, and whispers in our ear:
"Let your heart not be troubled … Am I not here, who am your Mother?"
Francis is a future saint in Argentina's list for those who became canonized.
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