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Posted October 12, 2010
Not What You Think It Is
'Chasing Francis' is one of the best fictionalized non-fiction books I have read in a very long time. The story is about a pastor who has lost his faith. Sound familiar and dull? I thought so too until I was on the second page. And then everything changed. The book is actually about the teachings of St. Francis of Assisi but set in a fictional story featuring Chase Falson, the disillusioned pastor of a large New England church. The book chronicles Chase's search for the real Jesus, not the one that he had manufactured to suit his own theology. To find Him, Chase turns to an uncle who is a Franciscan priest in Italy. Compelling fiction is skillfully woven around a detailed examination of the teachings of St. Francis, leading the reader into a path of self-reflection that will challenge any Christian's blind acceptance of what they have always been taught about who Jesus is and what He stands for in today's culture. The only disappointment was the last few pages which are a 'sermon' by the main character. Had to slough through them to get to the Epilogue which picked the story back up and tied up the loose ends very nicely. Even though I was provided this book by NavPress Publishers as part of their blogger review program, I have since bought three copies and given them to friends and family who are wondering about their own faith. This is a great read for anybody who thinks they know Jesus but who are willing to be surprised by discovering Someone new.
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Posted August 10, 2013
Many Christians question their faith from time to time. But when
Many Christians question their faith from time to time. But when a pastor questions his faith in front of the entire congregation during a service, things will never be the same for either the pastor or the church. This book is about just such a crisis of faith, and what the pastor does to reclaim his faith in himself and his faith in God.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
I found this to be an exceptionally interesting, if not a fast read. I felt the need to stop and reflect now and then upon what I was reading or had just read. I like books like this - books that make me think about how my life relates to what I am reading. Chase's journey to discover whether he still believes in God is simple, yet takes some complicated twists and turns. I had hoped for a different conclusion, but it is what I was expecting.
I was given an advance copy of this book in exchange for a fair review. I was not required to give a good review; the opinions expressed herein are my own.
Posted July 6, 2013
I received a copy of CHASING FRANCIS: A PILGRIM¿S TALE by Ian Mo
I received a copy of CHASING FRANCIS: A PILGRIM’S TALE by Ian Morgan Cron from Thomas Nelson via BookSneeze. The back cover warns that the book reads more like a memoir than fiction, and it does, which is perfect. It gets to ring closer to home and may mean more to readers. It felt as though I sat across from the main character, Pastor Chase Falson, while he told me his tale.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
The story involves his loss of faith and how he revived it by visiting his uncle in Italy. He learns through the teachings of Francis of Assisi. I especially liked that part since I read a biography about him a short while ago. The end of the book includes a pilgrim’s guide to help you on your journey to follow in their footsteps.
I found even the cover of the book to be very relaxing. I have been going through difficult times at work, with a severe emotional drain, and this book offered the perfect, intelligent escape. I could reflect on many of the inner-struggle thoughts. This is definitely a book I will recommend to others, and will pass this one on at work to others who are need of enlightenment.
Posted April 1, 2011
St. Francis of Assisi is a TRUE Patron Saint~!!
Chasing Francis: A Pilgrim's Tale is a spiritually uplifting novel for anyone who has lost their faith and are in search of a renewal. The author, Ian Morgan Cron, has weaved a tale of fiction with non-fiction that is sure to enlighten all those who peruse its pages. Chase Falcon is a pastor of a very successful ministry who begins to see flaws in his parishioners and the church he preaches from. While struggling internally with the materialistic trappings that have become a part of the religious cycle, Chase doubts his influence. The day one of his young members dies from an accident, Chase's floodgates can no longer be held back and in front of his congregation he laments about the evils that each of them has allowed into their house of God. The elders are appalled and ask Chase to take a leave of absence until he can get his head together. Stepping into Chase's shoes is his Senior Pastor, Chip, causing a rift in the church, and eventually, the churches demise. Suffering from depression, Chase is uncertain of his future, and has no direction. A phone call from his Uncle Kenny, a Franciscan Monk, to come spend some with himself and his brothers in France and retrace the steps of his patron saint, St. Francis of Assisi, sounds appealing to Chase and he embarks on what will be one of the best experiences in his life. Dispersed throughout the narrative are aspects of St. Francis that will give a different light on the Patron Saint of Children and Animals. Ian Morgan Cron has given you insight into the kind of person St. Francis was and why he is still reveled to this day. I quite enjoyed the book, it was easy to read, understand and the characters are enjoyable. I found myself wishing I were hanging out with the Franciscan Monks. Their jocularity and intense love of life would be refreshing to be around.
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Posted January 31, 2011
Wonderful vision for the church
I have to agree with Gordon MacDonald who wrote, "I'd like to be part of a church that this hero ends up proposing." Chasing Francis is a historical novel that tells the story of a disenfranchised, evangelical minister who goes on a pilgrimage (sabbatical?) to rediscover his faith. He makes it very clear that he didn't loose his love for Jesus but for Jesus' church. Through traveling to Italy and following the journeys of and studying the life of Francis of Assisi, Chase (the main character) comes to a deeper understanding of what it means to truly follow Christ.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
From a theological standpoint, I struggled with the emphasis on Francis instead of a focus on Christ, but I had to remind myself that the book is fiction and not necessarily what we would consider "Christian Living." However, his final picture of the church he wants to lead is in line with Christ's vision set out in the Gospels. There are some things I would add to his vision, but I believe the implication behind the story is not that the church needed so much to be only what was presented but needed to add to what it was already doing, while changing some things, to better realize Biblical Christianity.
Over all this book was worth reading and I'd love to participate in a discussion group of it. For the record, I was in tears at the end of it. It's been a long time since I read a good piece of fiction (literally, probably over 10 years), and this was a great re-introduction to the genre. Overall, I'll give it 4/5 stars.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."