Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Thirtieth Anniversary of My First Book, "Fishers of Men"

This book was published in December of 1986. It's hard to believe that it has be thirty years.

Before this month ends, I want to mark the thirtieth anniversary of the publication of my first book, Fishers of Men, by Trinity Communications.

I was a 23 year old graduate student and aspiring writer and research journalist in the Summer and Fall of 1986. Thanks to a grant, I was able to travel to different parts of the country to interview priests about their vocation and ministry, and then publish a collection of "profiles" in a book for Trinity as part of a program geared to fostering vocations to the priesthood.

Are you finished laughing? Okay, the photo is overexposed; thus my "heavily tanned" look. Otherwise, this kid is me!

I have such great memories of this adventure, which really enlarged my horizons and gave me a broad experience of the ministry of the Catholic Church all over the United States.

And, though the book was popular and inspirational in genre, it did stimulate my very young theological reflections about the mystery of the Church in the best way, by bringing me into contact with the flesh of Jesus Christ present and at work in the Church's life and mission in the world.

One can see--for example in these pages--that I have already begun to reflect and write about the themes that still concern me today. Other than having a lot more experience and a lot less energy, I don't feel so different than the young man I was thirty years ago.