• Hardcover: 240 pages
• Publisher: HarperOne (October 4, 2011)
In Between Heaven and Mirth, James Martin, SJ, assures us that God wants us to experience joy, to cultivate a sense of holy humor, and to laugh at life’s absurdities—not to mention our own humanity. Father Martin invites believers to rediscover the importance of humor and laughter in our daily lives and to embrace an essential truth: faith leads to joy.
Holy people are joyful people, says Father Martin, offering countless examples of healthy humor and purposeful levity in the stories of biblical heroes and heroines, and in the lives of the saints and the world’s great spiritual masters. He shows us how the parables are often the stuff of comedy, and how the gospels reveal Jesus to be a man with a palpable sense of joy and even playfulness. In fact, Father Martin argues compellingly, thinking about a Jesus without a sense of humor may be close to heretical.
Drawing on Scripture, sharing anecdotes from his experiences as a lifelong Catholic, a Jesuit for over twenty years, and a priest for more than ten, and including amusing and insightful sidebars, footnotes, and jokes, Father Martin illustrates how joy, humor, and laughter help us to live more spiritual lives, understand ourselves and others better, and more fully appreciate God’s presence among us. Practical how-to advice helps us use humor to show our faith, embrace our humanity, put things into perspective, open our minds, speak truth, demonstrate courage, challenge power, learn hospitality, foster effective human relations, deepen our relationship with God, and … enjoy ourselves. Inviting God to lighten our hearts, we can enjoy a little heaven on earth.
The Rev. James Martin, S.J., is a Jesuit priest, culture editor of America magazine, and New York Times bestselling author of The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything. Father Martin is a frequent commentator in the national media, having appeared in such diverse venues as The Colbert Report (which refers to Martin as the “Official Chaplain to Colbert Nation”), NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross, Fox News’ The O’Reilly Factor, PBS’ Newshour, as well as in The New York Times, The Boston Globe, and The Huffington Post. Before entering the Jesuits, he graduated from the Wharton School of Business and worked with General Electric for six years.
James’ Tour Stops
Tuesday, October 4th: JonathanFSullivan.com
Wednesday, October 5th: Scrutinies
Tuesday, October 11th: Imprisoned in My Bones
Friday, October 14th: Elizabeth Esther
Monday, October 17th: The Curt Jester
Wednesday, October 19th: The House of the Seven Tails
Thursday, October 20th: Vox Nova
Monday, October 24th: Happy Catholic
Tuesday, October 25th: imperfect prose
Thursday, October 27th: Mom’s Mustard Seeds
Friday, October 28th: A Catholic Life
Monday, October 31st: Why I Am Catholic
Wednesday, November 30th: Patheos
Tuesday, December 6th: SnoringScholar.com