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Saint John Neumann: Missionary to Immigrants Paperback – October 15, 2016
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In this book we follow Saint John Neumann as he leaves school and travels to America. He was not even sure he would be ordained upon arrival, but God was leading him and he followed. We see him become a rural preacher travelling to wherever Catholic were in need of a priest. Later he will join the Redemptorist. And later even a Bishop. John was made a bishop on March 28th, 1852, which happened to be his birthday. He chose for the motto of is episcopate “Passion of Christ, strengthen me.” And that was how he lived his own life, in the strength of Christ Jesus.
This book follows the others in the series in style and format. The main part of the book is a biography of the saint. Then a prayer to the saint. And this is followed by a glossary. Each glossary is geared to that specific book. The glossary in this specific volume has 31 definitions. There are also 5 illustrations, this time by Virginia Esquinaldo, who illustrated 2 other books in the series.
The specific prayer to Saint John Neumann is:
“Saint John Neumann, you loved Jesus so
much that you wanted to spend your life serving
him. You left your family, your friends, and your
country because you loved God and wanted to
serve him as a missionary in the United States.
Even though the way was difficult, you trusted
that Jesus would always lead you and provide.
Help me to listen to Jesus so he can lead me,
too. Help me to trust him always. Saint John, help
me to be courageous in sharing my faith with
This this book we follow the life of a man who lived to server. His motto was to do all in the strength of Jesus Christ. We follow his across the ocean from Europe to America. We follow him serving rural parishes in rural New York, and final to being the bishop of Philadelphia. He always strived to hear God’s voice and to follow where God lead. And this is the greatest lesson we can learn from this saint.
This book was the 36 published in the Encounter the Saints Series this book was published in 2016, it is currently the most recent in the series with another is due out in January of 2018. Currently this is my favourite series of books. I love reading them for how they help my spiritual journey, but also to share with my children and other children to help with their formation. I highly recommend both the book and the series.
It's a short read for the older crowd (I finished it in a morning), but is sure to keep the target audience engaged, as well. It boasts short chapters, and the occasional, full page, black and white illustration.
I received a complimentary copy from the publisher with the hope that I would provide a (favorable) review. Complimentary copies of books don't necessarily make good books, however. My opinions are my own.
The book includes:
Glossary of Terms (for example: Monstrance, Novitiate, and Surplice)
Easy to read chapters (about five pages per chapter)
Black and white drawings
The book covers John's childhood through his vocational calling (doctor or priest?), missionary work, Forty Hours with Jesus, becoming a Bishop, working in Philadelphia, his death, and canonization.
Note: a copy of this book was provided to me for review purposes by the publisher.
Perhaps the most touching parts as I read them centered on the network of connections that John Neumann formed and supported during his life. His love for family, his care for children and the balance of giftedness with authentic humility present a picture of a man of God worthy of imitation.
As part of the Encounter the Saints series, the book is directed to child readers, but as a lover of John Neumann even before his canonization, I found this book allowed him to come alive in so many warm scenes.
Pauline Books and Media provided me with a free copy of Saint John Neumann in exchange for an honest review.