Chasing Francis: A Pilgrim's Tale by Ian Morgan Cron
published by Zondervan and released May 7.13
Ian Cron introduces us to Francis of Assissi via his impact on a contemporary pastor, Chase Falson, who hits the wall in his faith journey after the death of one of his parish children. Taking a much needed break to restore, refresh and rediscover faith, he travels to Italy to spend time with his uncle, a Fransiscan priest.
While he's on this spiritual journey, the youth pastor back home is on a campaign to aggrandize his position to the elders and ingratiate himself to the congregation in order to become the replacement senior pastor. Chase had planted the church after his graduation from college, and seen it through all the early struggles, growth and building enlargement to its current place of respectability in the academically and intellectually wealthy area of Thackery.
Chase's beliefs and the teachings of Francis collide in the experiential realities Chase encounters during his time in Rome and pilgrimage in the steps of Francis. God orchestrated connections and relationships speak deeply to him, re-orient his spiritual direction and focus that dramatically impacts his future upon returning to his US homeland.
I'm including some of author Ian Cron's quotes to introduce readers to Francis and inspire us as readers to new ways of being Light to our world as well ...
“First, if Francis were around today, he'd say our church community relies too much on words to tell others about our faith. For Francis, the gathered community was as potent a form of witness as words. He was convinced that how we live together is what attracts people to faith.”
“Francis taught me that if we spent less time worrying about how to share our faith with someone on an airplane and more time thinking about how to live radically generous lives, more people would start taking our message seriously.”
“Beauty can break a heart and make it think about something more spiritual than the mindless routine we go through day after day to get by. Francis was a singer, a poet, an actor. He knew that the imagination was a stealth way into people's souls, a way to get all of us to think about God. For him, beauty was its own apologetic. That's why a church should care about the arts. They inspire all of us to think about the eternal.”
― Ian Morgan Cron, Chasing Francis: A Pilgrim's Tale
I appreciate the thought provoking challenges of this novel that had me countering with my own spiritual insights and responses. Definitely an interactive read. Thank you, Ian.
I received this book from Zondervan Publishers to read and review without obligation. Thank you for the opportunity.