Jesus, A Pilgrimage – Book Review and Giveaway

970992_10152306293894233_290989403_n In November 2004, I had a chance to visit Israel, a place that I had longed to see. At the time, the  Second Intifada was in full swing, the Carmel market in Tel Aviv had been hit with by a suicide bomb two weeks before I was to go, and Yasser Arafat died two days my prior to my arrival.  It was an uncertain time, but I was not afraid. It turned out to be the trip of a lifetime, and one that truly impacted my faith. Before going, I read so many books about the Holy Land and about faith, although no book at that time could have prepared me for my journey.

In his new book, Jesus, A Pilgrimage, (Harper Collins, 510 pp, $27.95) Jesuit priest, author, and commentator, James Martin SJ writes about his own journey to Israel, his life of faith, and about Jesus. My initial reaction? Where was this book when I went on my pilgrimage?

Whether you are about to go to Israel or not, this book is a journey of mind, body, and spirit. With his deft writing skills well honed from years of working his craft, Fr. Martin leads us on a pilgrimage like no other. Weaving stories and anecdotes from his own recent visit to Israel, along with a remarkable breadth and depth of scriptural reflections and insights, he takes us on a journey to know Jesus.

It is the rare gift that someone can take scholarly material and make it accessible and easy to understand, without dumbing it down. Fr. Martin possesses this gift in abundance!  Whether examining scripture,  historical context, or a spiritual kernel of wisdom, the author takes us higher and deeper at the same time,  satisfying the intellect and the heart at once. He cleverly uses anecdotes from his own travel experiences and often in humorous ways, to illustrate a point, and Martin’s scholarly references provide a solid foundation for the conversation.

Whether or not you have ever been – or ever want to go to the Holy Land is not important. If you have an interest in Jesus, from any perspective, this book has something to offer you. For those of us who follow Jesus, we will find an invitation to deepen that knowledge through not only what we read, but because of the ways that this book invites one into prayer and reflection.

Smart, funny, inviting, engaging, wise, and deep, Jesus by James Martin is a pilgrimage like no other. You don’t have to leave your chair, but you must open your mind and heart, your transformation is optional, but it would be hard to imagine reading this book, and not being transformed in some way.

Jesus, A Pilgrimage. The journey awaits you- are you ready?

Would you like to win a copy of this book? Here’s how… Please leave a comment on the blog; it needs to be a full sentence, not just a word. This post will appear on multiple blog platforms, but there is only one drawing. Multiple comments does not mean multiple entries. Deadline for leaving comments that will be entered into a random drawing is Friday, April 4, 2014, 11:59pm. Winner will be informed via email no later than Monday, April 7, 2014.


9 thoughts on “Jesus, A Pilgrimage – Book Review and Giveaway

  1. My in-laws have a trip planned for May. I was looking for a gift for them and was thinking of a travel journal, but you’ve given me a better idea -thanks!


  2. I would eventually love to go to the Holy Land. While I know it will not be until well into the future it sounds like this book will bring me to a spiritual experience also like no other.


  3. Fran, well done, as always. Ive read all of Fr. Martin’s books (was fortunate to get them thru the library) and you are spot on about his writing. And I love the Jesuits! Cant wait to read this one, would love to own it!


  4. Great Lenten reading for the journey to Easter. I have my own copy already but would be honored to receive another and send it on to a friend. (Maybe I’ll do that on my own.)


  5. I love the tone of his writing.
    I’ve never had the want to visit Israel except for Masada. My friend lives there and when she visited Masada and posted pictures, I found them unbelievably moving. Win the book or not, I’m looking forward to reading it.


  6. One of our ladies’ groups is reading and discussing Father Martins’ My Life with the Saints. So I already know that I would enjoy reading this new book by Father. What a pleasure it would be to win!


  7. Jesus, a Pilgrimage, sounds like a book to be read and shared with others so that together they might grow in understanding of Jesus an his life in relation to their own.


  8. I’ve not read any of Father Martin’s books. Jesus, a Pilgrimage sounds like it has a wealth of riches for those seeking to learn more about Jesus’ life and our lives in Jesus. I would love to read it and journey with Father Martin to the Holy Land.


  9. I would love to win a copy of Fr. Martin’s book, “Jesus, a Pilgrimage”, to enhance the memories of my own pilgrimage to Israel.


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