Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Fr. James Martin's Incredible Book- "Jesus-A Pilgrimage"

The Bible study class in my parish, that I attend, usually meets throughout the year except for the summer months. This summer some of us in that class decided to meet during the summer to read uplifting, spiritual books and discuss them once a week.  The first book that someone suggested was not that uplifting but it was fascinating. I had never heard of it until the group mentioned it and it was written by a rabbi who happens to be a Messianic Jew (he believes in Jesus as Messiah). The book is a best seller and it is quite intriguing.  The book is "The Harbinger" by Jonathan Cahn.
The next book we read was Scott Hahn's masterpiece, "The Lamb's Supper-The Mass as Heaven on Earth." It should be required reading for all Catholic high school students and RCIA participants. We recommended it for everyone in the parish to read though I'm not sure how many actually did.
The final book is a large one and it took us over five weeks to read but it is a truly amazing work and a great book. I highly recommend it. It's Fr. James Martin's "Jesus-A Pilgrimage." We are on the final 100 pages which we will complete discussing next Monday.
I've been reading religious, spiritual books my whole adult life (I've been on this journey a long time). But Fr. James' book is special, he pulls from so many good sources in his reflections and analysis. The book tells of his experiences as he makes a pilgrimage to the Holy Land with his priest-friend George. As a Jesuit, Fr. James shares a lot of his own experiences and thoughts as well as other Scripture scholars that he has either read or studied with.  It's easy reading though the pilgrimage covers the serious subject and experiences of Jesus' life, his travels throughout the Holy Land, (his hidden life as well as his public ministry), his preaching, his relationship with his apostles and disciples and of course his intimate relationship with His Father.
The book is very good.  If you get a chance to read it, don't rush through it. I'm now reading what is for me the most difficult part of Jesus' life to read about and that is the end of his life and his tragic and painful death. It is not easy for me to think about it and reflect upon it.
Fr. Martin is a great writer and all the praying he did in the Holy Land while taking notes for the book, seems to have paid off.  His prayerfulness comes through the work.