Michael Crosby

Finding Francis, Following Christ

The award winning Finding Francis, Following Christ, authored by Capuchin friar Michael H. Crosby, is a thought provoking integration of Franciscan spirituality and Francis’ life, challenging the reader to explore peacemaking in today’s violent world.

The Catholic Press Association of Canada and the U.S. awarded Finding Francis, Following Christ, 2nd place for 2007 books on Spirituality. The Catholic Press Association writes: "Crosby finds in the spiritual odyssey of Francis of Assisi the antidote for the problem of violence in our world today. As Francis called into question both his culture's story and his church's story, Crosby engages in a narrative of Francis' life that challenges the contemporary reader to question the culture in which we live today. The centrality of the life of Christ that captivated Francis is the motivating factor that led him into a form of spiritual revolution that has reverberated through the centuries. The book is truly a challenge to the accepted understanding of 'Americanism' in the public mind and 'Romanism' in the Catholic Church. The path of Francis transcended the historical time in which he lived and beckons us to treat this path to peace in our inner life and in the world."

“Francis is our model for the gospel in action,” Crosby explains.  “Some have described my work as being provocative.  That is not my goal.  I have attempted to make connections, demonstrating Francis’ spirituality and peacemaking and how we can use this model to discover a just peace in today’s world. How are we living our Christian discipleship in today’s world?”

Some of the advance praise for Finding Francis, Following Christ

“Francis lives! He walks right off the pages of this remarkable book and into the violent world of America today. Michael Crosby has given us the opportunity to meet Francis as if for the first time. A thoughtful and mature work from one of the most prophetic writers in America today.” 
--Mary Jo Leddy, author, Radical Gratitude

“Only Michael Crosby could make so many creative and compelling connections! As a follower of Christ and of Francis, I can only hope that this book receives the readership it deserves. It is radical, personal, inspiring, and brilliant at the same time.”
--Richard Rohr, O.F.M., Center for Action and Contemplation, Albuquerque, New Mexico

“Readers of Michael Crosby’s work know his passion for a new way of living Christian faith in our world. In Finding Francis, Following Christ he reveals the personal roots of that passion through a retelling of the story of a hero’s journey, that of Francis of Assisi. The saint of 13th-century Umbria suggests an alternative to our increasingly violent society, to an economics of global greed and dehumanizing ideologies. Crosby’s retrieval of early Franciscan stories will make readers stop and think how much the world today could be different if the message of the Little Poor Man of Assisi were taken seriously.”
--William J. Short, OFM, Franciscan School of Theology, Berkeley CA

“Provocative as always, Michael Crosby offers in this exposition of the life of Francis of Assisi a commentary on our own time and the radical requirements of the Gospel of justice and peace. He most eloquently describes Francis’ ‘surrender’ of the false ways of power and possession and his ‘capture’ of the power and gift of God’s love in the Incarnation!” 
--Joseph P. Chinnici, OFM, former provincial minister of the Franciscan Friars

“Michael Crosby’s book combines careful study of Franciscan historical and textual research of the last century, deliberate weaving of contemporary critics of the dominant culture, and the Capuchin’s Order’s collective and courageous effort to redefine Franciscan poverty for our times. The result is a study of themes that permeate the biographies of Francis and that provide a path of illumination for those who see in Francis an enchanting model of discipleship.”
–Margaret Carney, OSF, STD, President, St. Bonaventure University

“Provocative, challenging, timely: Michael Crosby breathes news life into the enduring tale of Francis of Assisi. Leaning squarely on the best contemporary scholarship, he reverently uses the example of Francis to point beyond himself to the mystery of Christ in today’s world. Reading Finding Francis, Following Christ is an enriching experience for anyone eager to investigate the timeless character of Francis and to discover, in the process, the eternal mystery of Christ.” 
--Regis J. Armstrong, O.F.M. Cap., editor, Francis and Clare: The Complete Writings

“Once again, in Finding Francis, Following Christ we encounter the kind of honest, courageous, and heartfelt approach to his topic that many of us have come to expect from Michael Crosby’s writings. His reflections are daring, insightful, and profoundly relevant for our time. This is not a simple hagiography for our edification. It is, instead, a passionate challenge to take on, in fact, to become the Christ as, indeed, Francis did.”
–Barbara Fiand, SNDdeN, author, From Religion Back to Faith

“This book provides a solid integration of Franciscan spirituality and history as it explores one of the greatest peacemakers of all times, Francis of Assisi. It shows the impact of his life to the burning question of the day--the pursuit of a just peace. Michael Crosby challenges us to reflect on authentic Christian discipleship in a world torn apart by violence, materialism, and ideologies. This is an important study for those who seek to live the Gospel of peace.” 
--Ilia Delio, Washington Theological Union

“Michael Crosby has not created yet another biography about Francis of Assisi. Rather, he uses the life of Francis to uncover his spiritual insights in fascinating ways. Creating the biography of a spirituality, Crosby has sketched a progression of spiritual insight seldom if ever found in a single glance. Finding Francis, Following Christ proves it is possible to construct a Franciscan spirituality that strongly challenges the Franciscan world without rejecting the official sources for Francis’ life. . . I know of no other Franciscan author so on top of the critical literature about joy! It's quite incredible.”
--William R. Hugo, OFMCap., Studying the Life of Francis of Assisi: A Beginner's Handbook

“To wean ourselves from the web of personal, cultural, institutional, economic, military and planetary violence is crucial to Christian conversion. Crosby draws from the best of Franciscan scholarship to present a Francis who shows the way. The ‘Spirit of the Lord’ leaps from every page!”
--J. A. Wayne Hellmann OFM Conv., Saint Louis University

“This is a thorough explanation and strong endorsement of the revolution in social and economic relations practiced and preached by St. Francis, following the example of the efforts of Jesus more than a millennium earlier. Both of them insisted on an equality and fraternity—with implied liberty from their inherited cultural structures—that was feared and resisted by secular and ecclesial authorities. These values continue to need and deserve our earnest and concerted defense wherever they are lacking or endangers.” 
–Beatrice Bruteau, author, The Holy Thursday Revolution

“Michael Crosby’s fresh approach to the Francis story attempts to engage the ‘Franciscan imagination’ as an effective means of negotiating the challenges of life in the church and our world. He succeeds in doing what the early biographers of Francis did--presenting the life of Francis as an effective model for Christian response to the challenges of the gospel in their own culture and history. This is an important book for all who seek the way of justice and peace as a way of life today!”
--Michael W Blastic, OFM, The Franciscan Institute, St. Bonaventure University

 Franciscan Retreat with Michael Crosby

21 25-Minute Topics on 8 CD Set or Download Including Written Guide on CD

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