This lovely, inspiring collection of meditations by the senior elder of the Bruderhof is as much an introduction to the extraordinary witness of that singularly ordinary community as it is a reflection on the fullness of life in the face of death. Combined with a foreword by Madeleine L'Engle and a note to readers written by Mumia Abu-Jamal from death row, this is a powerful collection indeed. Most of the book is devoted to stories of ordinary people--both inside and outside the Bruderhof community--who have faced their own deaths or the deaths of others with courage and dignity. Because Arnold's writing is simple and elegant, it allows the lives of ordinary people to speak with a clarity that is too often denied. That in itself is a commendation of the simplicity of the Bruderhof, a simplicity that is likely to leave readers not only comforted but also curious. A brief section on the Bruderhof and sources for additional information add to the book's value as a library resource. Steve Schroeder
Madeleine L'Engle I wish a friend had put this beautiful book in my hands when my husband died. Sue Elkins, BBC Radio The stories are certainly moving; there's a sense of facing death without fear, and of finding meaning in the death of someone close to you. I think it's as much about living as about dying.
This best-selling volume addresses fears every human faces - vulnerability, illness, aging, and dying. Yet at its core this book is more about living than dying. Arnold says living for a cause greater than ourselves enables us to face eternity with the strength that comes from faith. Drawing on stories of people he has known and counseled as pastor, relative, or friend, Arnold shows how suffering can be given meaning, and despair overcome. He offers the assurance that even today, in our culture of isolation and death, there is hope. As you read, you'll meet individuals who lived life to the fullest by serving others.
About the Author
An outspoken social critic and award-winning author, Johann Christoph Arnold's books have sold over 300,000 copies in English and have been translated into 18 foreign languages: German, Korean, Spanish, Arabic, Czech, Italian, Romanian, Swedish, Thai, Norwegian, French, Creole, Japanese, Estonian, Dutch, Portuguese, Telugu, and Chinese. Arnold has been a guest on hundreds of talk shows, and a speaker at numerous colleges and high schools