What if a bishop decided to live as a beggar, and then as a bishop again? New York Times bestselling fiction author and Catholic priest Fr. Joseph F. Girzone, known for his Joshua Series, tells such a story in The Homeless Bishop.
In the first novel published in the 41 years of Orbis Books, the book division of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, an intelligent and talented Catholic archbishop (Carlo) is granted permission to take an extended leave to understand why Jesus loved the poor and disadvantaged. Carlo gives up his status and worldly goods to experience life in America as a homeless man.
When he returns to his diocese in Italy, Carlo decides to build housing for the homeless. He adopts eight homeless children and asks his cousin to be their mother. Carlo turns a cold and empty mansion into a place of life and laughter. Soon after, Carlo becomes homeless again, though not of his choosing, and he is sent on a sensitive diplomatic mission.
The Homeless Bishop is an imaginative "what if" journey that takes readers from the halls of the Vatican to the streets of New York and even to unexpected places such as Iran. The story shows that instead of fear and mistrust, the disadvantaged can be healed with love, forgiveness and help.
Creating his first new character in 25 years, Father Girzone was motivated by an increasing concern about the attitude of Americans, especially Christians, toward the poor. He considered how Christian scripture emphasized Jesus' special love for the poor.
"I set about to explore this question for myself," said Father Girzone. "Why is Jesus so obsessed with the poor?"
Founded during 1970, Orbis Books endeavors to publish works that enlighten the mind, nourish the spirit, and challenge the conscience. Orbis seeks to explore the global dimensions of Christian faith and mission, to invite dialogue with diverse cultures and religious traditions, and to serve the cause of reconciliation and peace.