By Mitch Albom
#7509 This inspiring book is about believing in something bigger than yourself. Its about a life’s purpose; about losing belief and finding it again; about the divine spark inside us all. Its the story of the authors remarkable eight-year journey between two worlds – two men, two faiths, two communities.
It begins with an unusual request: an 82-year-old rabbi asks Albom to deliver his eulogy. Feeling unworthy, Albom insists on understanding the man better, which throws him back into a world of faith he’d left years ago.
Meanwhile, Albom becomes involved with a Detroit pastor – a reformed drug dealer and convict – who preaches to the poor and homeless in a decaying church with a hole in its roof. Moving between their worlds, Christian and Jewish, African-American and white, impoverished and well-to-do, Albom observes how these very different men employ faith similarly in fighting for survival: the older, suburban rabbi embracing it as death approaches; the younger, inner-city pastor relying on it to keep himself and his church afloat.
They explore issues that perplex modern man: how to endure when difficult things happen; what heaven is; intermarriage; forgiveness; doubting God; and the importance of faith in trying times. Although the texts, prayers, and histories are different, Albom begins to recognize a striking unity between the two worlds.
In the end, as the rabbi nears death and a harsh winter threatens the pastor’s wobbly church, Albom sadly fulfills the rabbi’s last request and writes the eulogy. And he finally understands what both men had been teaching all along: the profound comfort of believing in something bigger than yourself.
Ten percent of the profits from this book go to charity, including The Hole In The Roof Foundation, which helps refurbish places of worship that aid the homeless (with the help of the author, the roof on this church was finally replaced in December 2009!).
272 pages. Softcover. 2011.$17.99.
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