Well, I feel like I’m a little “late” to the “let’s read Pope Francis’s encyclical (that came out in July 2013)” party. But, better late than never. While this letter very much coincided with the Year of Faith, the truths touched on are still true today.
This was the first encyclical I’ve ever read. I know they’re all available online at the Vatican’s website, but I have a really hard time reading lengthy documents on the computer, so this format was MUCH more my style (Real book. In hand.) I was surprised how simple it was to read. I hesitate to say “easy”, because there was so much depth in every sentence, it did require that you actually pay attention (or at least for me it did, I don’t have the ability to absorb books on the fly). What I mean by “simple”: practically everything written was so… obvious.
Faith, received from God… becomes a light for our way, guiding our journey through time.
I really feel that Pope Francis has a way of putting words so beautifully.
The thing which spoke to me the most while reading, was when faith was tied in directly with Love, specifically God’s love. Two passages specifically. The first when it’s talking about faith being increased when we receive God’s love and God being faithful to us in giving his love:
Only to the extent that love is grounded in truth can it endure over time…
When I read this, I immediately compared it to my marriage. I was able to see the immediate human impact that this statement holds, which I was then able to transfer to my relationship with God, very powerful and solidifying in this up and down period of my life.
The light of faith is capable of enhancing the richness of human relations, their ability to endure, to be trustworthy, to enrich our life together.
I love how this takes the surety of the faith and thereby love that we have received from God, and extends it out to form the interactions of the rest of our human relationships.
I would whole heartedly recommend this book to everyone. There were so many passages about love that were absolutely beautiful. I know this book is about faith, but I think it’s just as much about faith and what can happen to us (in us, for us, from us, etc…) if we open ourselves up to receive it.
This was a very though provoking read, this review doesn’t even scratch the surface. I look forward to working my way through more of Pope Francis’s writings.
I received a free copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.