Book Review: Encountering Truth by Pope Francis

Encountering Truth by Pope FrancisIt’s easy to forget that long before Pope Francis was the Pope, he was a Parish Priest. As a Parish Priest, he delivered messages on a daily basis. Yet, as Pope, we only know about he big messages he delivers: Easter, Christmas, World Youth Day, etc.

The new volume from Pope Francis, Encountering Truth, is a collection of 186 homilies delivered by Pope Francis at the morning Mass held in the chapel at Saint Martha’s in the Vatican. These homilies draw from the daily Scriptures, and are a wealth of wisdom from the Holy Father.

Each homily was transcribed by Radio Vatican and are presented as summations with direct quotes.

These messages run the gamut of Christian life. He discusses topics that range from love, to forgiveness, to prayer, and to work. They are messages that give hope and life for the day ahead (remember these are homilies from morning mass). And, they are messages that disciple and encourage and strengthen and spur us to walking out the life of Christ in the day-to-day.

For instance, in Number 28, Pope Francis delivers a message about how just societies do not exploit workers, and ensures that all have access to work. “Work gives us dignity,” the Pope says. He continues, “Not to pay what is right, not to give work, because I am looking only at the bottom line, at the company bottom line; I’m looking only at what I can gain. That goes against God!”

This volume is an excellent read. It can be read straight through as a normal book. It can be used for day-to-day devotions (one homily each morning or evening). It can also be a great resource or commentary on specific passages. (Although, it does lack an index of Scripture References.)

The real beauty of this volume is that it gives a great insight into the heart of Pope Francis. It strips away the media bias, and just goes to his words. What does the text say to him. What is God saying to him in his meditation on the Scriptures. As you read through this volume, you feel the heart and soul of Pope Francis, and he shifts from a larger-than-life leader of the Catholic Church to a Parish Priest.

There is a great responsibility for us, the baptized: to proclaim Christ, to carry the Church forward, this fruitful maternity of the Church. Being Christian does not mean making a career in an office, to become a Christian lawyer or doctor. No. Being Christian is a gift that moves us forward with the power of the Spirit in the proclamation of Jesus Christ.

— Pope Francis, Homily dated 17 April 2013.

If you’d like to read the first chapter, you can do so by clicking here.


903018: Encountering Truth: Meeting God in the Every Day Encountering Truth: Meeting God in the Every Day
By Pope Francis / ImageEncountering Truth is a collection of highlights from homilies given by Pope Francis in the little Vatican chapel of Saint Martha from March 2013 to May 2014. Along with summaries by Radio Vaticana (who recorded and transcribed the homilies) and commentary by Father Antonio Spadaro, SJ, these reflections provide moments of inspiration, simplicity, and a glimpse into the papal world very few ever get to experience.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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