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Posted April 23, 2011
A Life Changing Book
What would your life be like if you heard the words of Jesus and asked, "Do you think He meant what He said?" How would your life change if you discovered that the gospel was personal - that God meant for you to apply His instructions to your daily life? These are the questions that a prestigious Wall Street finance lawyer faced after walking into church one night and hearing the challenge Jesus gave a rich young man - a man just like him - in Mark 10:17-25. Now I Walk On Death Row chronicles the spiritual odyssey of Dale S. Recinella - a man who spent a lifetime running from God - only to discover that he cannot escape God's call. In this memoir, we witness how God transforms Recinella from a powerful, privileged, chain-smoking attorney to a humble, self-sacrificing, volunteer chaplain who ministers to the poor, the homeless, the mentally ill, those with AIDS, and ultimately, those living in solitary confinement and serving on death row in Florida's most dangerous prisons. It's been a long time since I've read a book that has touched me so deeply. When I first saw the title, I didn't want to pick it up. After I started reading it, I didn't want to put it down. If you're looking for a book that will change your perspective on life and the world around you, then read this book. I cannot recommend it more highly.
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Posted May 5, 2011
Compelling story of a radically surrendered life
Now I Walk on Death Row by Dale S. Recinella is a thought provoking biography of one man's journey in faith. Recinella first learned about the unfairness of life when his younger sister, Jan, was crippled by a high fever that left her in a vegetative state, bringing his parents' life in the American Dream to an end. He grew up to be a lawyer, to always have enough money and to be in a position of control in life. His career takes off and he is soon handling billion dollar deals, but his marriage and family life suffers as he engages in a fast-paced lifestyle of drinking and extreme work weeks of 100+ hours. His younger brother, Gary, confronts Dale and helps him turn his life over to Christ. That decision soon leads him to wife Susan and they begin a new life together with three more children and life in a high-priced neighborhood with all the best things money can buy. Until Susan and Dale read the story of the Rich Young Man in the Bible where Jesus tells him to give all his belongings to the poor and to follow Him. This sets the couple, and their children, on a quest to discover: Does Jesus really mean what He says? The answer they finally discover sends them on a path of radical surrender and obedience that few readers can truly comprehend following. Eventually Dale works as a spiritual adviser in Florida's state prisons for death row inmates. Dale's journey is absolutely fascinating and his willingness to live as God commands, no matter the cost, is both inspiring and jaw-dropping. The writing is compelling, and I had a hard time putting the book down once I started reading it, because I truly wanted to see where God would take the Recinella family. I hope that Dale follows up this book with one focusing only on the stories of the men he has met in his time working on death row. The book takes on an urgency and depth when the Dale starts his work in the prisons, and I would love to read all of the stories he didn't have room to share here.
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Posted April 11, 2011
This book will change your life!
Now I Walk On Death Row by Dale S. Recinella is a riveting story of one man's journey from his personal death row to eternal life and servitude among those condemned on death row. The author is transparent as he shares the trials of his childhood, poverty and suffering, and the self-made trials of adulthood. Anyone looking from the outside would have only seen a successful finance lawyer, wealth of Wall Street, and luxury. Inside, Dale Recinella was a broken man searching for a more purposeful life.
When his brother invites him to a Bible study, he attends with the purpose of meeting a girl. Yes, he finds his wife, but also the Lord. In studying the Bible with his wife, a question continues to invade his thoughts. Did Jesus mean what He said? They began to peel away the comforts of their lifestyle, decreased their workload, and increased their ministry to the poor and homeless, still asking this thought-provoking question. When he was asked to attend a conference sponsored by the American Catholic Church, he asked the panel the following.
The things you are saying about our gospel, to go beyond our comfort zone, our gospel to live in relationship with the poor, our gospel duty to make management decisions in multinational companies based on criteria other than just profit, these things are tremendous. But I have been an American Catholic all my life and have regularly attended church in wealthy suburban parishes for the last twenty years. I have never heard this from the pulpits of an affluent American church. When will we hear these words from the pulpit of our American churches? .. After translation into several languages, the reply came. Don't wait to hear it from the pulpit. Jesus said it. You read it. Go do it.
Unemployed, his wife accepted a position in Florida. He decided to volunteer at the prison, sharing Christ's salvation to those awaiting death. One priest had been serving the entire prison for fifteen years and knew that Dale Recinella was sent from God for this time. The author also shares his personal journey to a total pro-life position, a position that I, too, hold. He was once asked, How can a Christian justify being opposed to the law of the land? The death penalty is the law of the land. The author replied, So is legalized abortion, and as a Christian I must be against that as well.
He has fought against the execution of the mentally ill, and has been a minister to the families of the inmates and victims. He reminds us that when we live out the words of Jesus, what we give up is nothing compared to what we receive in return.
I highly recommend you read this inspirational book. It will not only open your heart to greater service to God, but also open your eyes to the lives of those on death row, remembering that they, too, are souls for whom Jesus died. This book comes with the recommendations of many Christian faiths and Christian ministers. This book is published by Chosen, Spirit filled Living, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
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Posted June 13, 2011
You won't be able to put it down
If you want to read a book that falls into the category of "I can't put this one down" then add Now I Walk on Death Row to your summer reading list. Wow! How do I summarize this one? It was, truly, one of those books that once I started to read it I couldn't put it down. This is the true-life story of Dale Recinella, a Wall Street finance lawyer, who decides to ask the question, "Does Jesus really mean what he says?" The answer, he concludes, leads to a transformation in his life that can only be explained as miraculous. Over time he leaves his work as a finance lawyer and enters the full-time ministry (volunteer, ministry, I might add, not paid ministry) serving "the least of these". Mr. Recinella begins by serving the homeless and down-and-out in the inner city where he lives, then transitions to serving AIDS patients, then works with men in prison, and eventually ends up as a volunteer chaplain ministering to the inmates on Florida's death row. It is a remarkable journey - one that is a model of what it looks like to "walk by faith and not by sight". This book at times made me laugh, cry, and even get angry - it was everything a good book should be. And to top it all off, it is a true story. Now I Walk on Death Row challenged me - and will most likely challenge you - to examine if you're really taking Jesus at his word and if you are truly living the life God has called you to live. What was shocking (and humbling) as I read the story is not how bad life is for many people in this world, but how ignorant I am of the pain around me and how unwilling I can be to sacrifice my own self to share with them the good news of Jesus' love. This book receives 5/5 stars.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Note: I received this book free from the publisher as part of their blogger review program. I was not required to write a positive review of it. I am disclosing this to comply with FTC regulations.
Posted May 30, 2011
I received this book for free from Bethany Publishers. This book was by far one of the best books I ever read. When I first received the book, I wasn't sure what to expect. I was curious about the author since he was a lawyer and I happen to work in a law firm. It was amazing that when I read the first page, I was immediately drawn in and I couldn't put the book down. Mr. Recinella is a prolific and gifted writer. I sincerely hope he writes another book, because I'm definitely going to read it. I never laughed and cried so much from a book in my life. It was so interesting to read about his life from basically being an unbeliever and then how he becomes a believer in Jesus Christ. But not only did he become a believer, he became a servant of the Lord. He took God at His Word and gave his life to serve others. He is truly an inspiration. This book was life transforming, thought provoking as it was convicting. It really makes you think about those who are incarcerated but innocent and facing the death penalty based on archaic laws. I don't want to give too much away, but I highly recommend this book and believe everyone should read it.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 19, 2013
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