This is such a wonderful story. I never really thought how busy a clergy man's (or woman's) life is and how much they actually do in their chosen vocation. Father Tim, the rector, in Mitford is the central character. He is just turning sixty at the beginning of the story and has reached a time in his life that he has lost a little of the joy and fulfillment he has always felt before. He is need of a vacation, which he has not taken in years, but which he always finds excuses to not take-he is getting burned out. Enter a huge bad-mannered dog (who is only controlled by hearing scriptures from the bible spoken to him) who has decided to adopt Father Tim, a young untamed boy, a new attractive neighbor, a jewel theft, a sixty year old secret love story, missing food and much more and you have a story that is so wonderful and so human and so enjoyable. I felt the urge to go to my bible and eagerly look up the many stories on Jesus because it made me feel so close to him and loved by him. Don't make the mistake that it is a preachy type story from what I just said but rather a feel good story that makes you want to reach out. The characters are all portrayed as actual everyday people we know ourselves with all their foibles and goodness combined. If you want a book that will leave you with a good contented feeling then this book will fullfill your wishes.