The Messenger Publications’ latest book entitled Finding God in the Mess: Meditations for Mindful Living will be launched by Bishop Alan McGuckian SJ on Thursday 26 October at 7pm in Duncairn Centre for Culture & Arts, Belfast. Authors Brendan McManus SJ and Jim Deeds will tell the story of how the book came about and they plan to entertain the audience with stories, songs, and images.
Brendan says: “The book was born out of a mess! While recovering from a fractured knee and in the midst of immobility and boredom, I came up with the idea for a book combining my photos and Jim’s reflections. When I got better, we walked the mountains that ring Belfast and discussed something that would speak to the messiness of people’s lives and help them find God there.” This meant tackling tough subjects such as depression, pain and grief, as well as joy, peace and happiness. The book was written from the twin perspectives of Ignatian spirituality and a focus on the mysteries of the Rosary, and it invites readers to consider how each reflection and each image is revealing of God’s Spirit, even the messy ones.
Speaking with The Irish Catholic, Brendan says: “Often people have a tendency to separate things, as if I have God over here, and all the things that are going well, and I have the rest of my life over here.” He continues: “We’re trying to bring all that together in order that we can find what God wants for this, to bring God’s healing, to bring God’s light, to bring God’s life into those situations.” Fr McManus speaks warmly of the transformation that can happen if people can get over their resistance to letting God in and bring God into their darker moments. He added, “God can transform things for us if we can persevere in faith during our moments of greatest suffering and God’s apparent absence.”
Finding God in the Mess: Meditations for Mindful Living can be purchased online through the Messenger Publications.