Ian Morgan Cron ©2006, 2013
214 pp. plus study questions and answers and bibliography (ppbk)
The church Chase Falson founded now has 3,000 members and Chase is about burnt out. He isn’t even sure what he believes anymore. After a meltdown during his last sermon the elders insist he take time off to recover. Meanwhile, his assistant appears eager for the head pastor role.
Chase flies to Italy to spend time with his Uncle Kenny, a monk in the Franciscan orders near Florence. Kenny arranges a pilgrimage for Chase, to follow the path of 13th century Francis of Assisi.
Chase learns astonishing things that help him see similarities between many present day churches and the church of Francis’ time. Francis quietly but insistently returned the church of his age to truth and wholeness.
Chase knows Francis’ methods are needed for our day. He realizes where he’d erred in his own theology and preaching. During Chase’s journey he meets several interesting people and receives a cool surprise that will clue readers to this sincere, tired pastor’s possible future.
The combination of a novel about struggling Christians and facts from the life of a 13th century monk create a most interesting book. What the story teaches readers can be exciting for our own lives and worship.
To keep the novel from ‘lecturing’ the author includes a section at the end of the book with questions and more information about Francis’ teachings.