This morning I put Laura in a cab and walked away, down the predawn Princes Street in Edinburgh watching the sun cast its early light on the castle, and later down the still-sleepy streets of Town listening as the bells rang out over it. My head was filled with the first forty pages of Children of God, the sequel to The Sparrow that I had delayed reading out of cowardice. Something I could not have hoped for has happened, and yet it fills me with dread, apprehension. This is love—this is faith, I think as I dare to read on: to encounter the impossible and tremble at its terrible beauty.
I never wrote a review of The Sparrow, as I said I would. It is too personal. As I take this journey into the dark, back to Rakhat, I leave you with what I wrote in my journal while reading The Sparrow:
Who am I? That my plain, human heart would faint to love God, to commune with the Divine? I, who am both agnostic and mystic, believer and skeptic, lover and beloved? God is as constant as my changeable heart; God is faithful, alleluia, amen.
Last night, a Catholic-leaning Protestant said to a Protestant-leaning Catholic, both drawn to Judaism: “I see no reason why we cannot celebrate both Catholic tradition and Jewish tradition.” Her response was, “Now that is ecumenical reform.”