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My Struggle with Faith    by Joseph F. Girzone order for
My Struggle with Faith
by Joseph F. Girzone
Order:  USA  Can
Doubleday, 2006 (2006)
Hardcover, e-Book

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* * *   Reviewed by Barbara Lingens

Who hasn't struggled with their faith? This book is a comfort to those who are looking for help in understanding what Christians believe and why. Clearly and simply written, the narrative traces Father Girzone's growth in his faith from boyhood to retirement age. As he moved from the faith of his parents to an understanding of what God and Jesus means to him, there were lots of questions. Some questions took years for resolution; others could be answered by careful reflection.

Father Girzone spends much of the book talking about the Jesus he learned to know through the Bible. Other topics include the worship of Mary, the early organization of the Church, celibacy and, very interestingly, his own attempts at ecumenism.

Father Girzone is the author of the popular Joshua books, and he makes good use of the questions and feelings expressed to him by his readers. Many of his anecdotes are very moving; people really flounder when it comes to understanding their belief. The honest, self-effacing approach in this book has lots of appeal.

The solution to Father Girzone's questions is based on reflection and logic. There are no mystical experiences here, though there may be some miracles. We are definitely in a rational mode, and I guess I missed some of the affective struggles that have to be present at times as well. All in all, though, My Struggle with Faith is well worth a read, especially because it helps us understand that the Church and its leaders are not and have never been perfect, even though the source of their dominion is.

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