At Play in the Lions' Den
By: Jim Forest
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"If you want to follow Jesus, you had better look good on wood." -- Daniel Berrigan
"As Jim Forest's biography demonstrates, Daniel Berrigan's life was a full measure of grace that soared up and flowed out of all those times and places that witnessed his unyielding personal commitment in word and deed to peace and social justice, his deep compassion and disarming humor, and the consistently heroic levels of his nonviolent resistance that took our breath away and renewed the face of the earth." --Martin Sheen
"There is no better general introduction to the life of Dan Berrigan, one of the greatest Christians of our age, of any age, than this deeply researched, highly personal, beautifully written biography by his friend Jim Forest." --James Martin, SJ, author, The Jesuit Guide to Almost Everything
"It is hard to deny that God prepares and then uses certain people for very special tasks. You will see that is eminently the case with Daniel Berrigan. . . Read, and enter into a much larger world." --Richard Rohr, O.F.M., Center for Action and Contemplation
Daniel Berrigan (1921-2016), a Jesuit priest and poet, was one of the preeminent Christian peacemakers of his time. After gaining notoriety in 1968 through his role, along with his brother Philip, in destroying Vietnam-era draft files as part of the Catonsville 9, he helped elevate the Christian conscience with regard to issues of war and violence. Resistance to the Vietnam War was followed by decades of protest against nuclear weapons, including his participation in the first “Plowshares” action, the symbolical disarming of nuclear warheads.
But Berrigan’s efforts on behalf of life also involved care for the dying and ministry to those suffering from AIDS. Jim Forest, who worked with Berrigan in building the Catholic Peace Fellowship in the 1960s, draws on his deep friendship over five decades to provide the most comprehensive and intimate picture yet available of this modern-day prophet. Extensive photographs and quotations from Berrigan’s writings complete the portrait.
Jim Forest is an internationally renowned peacemaker and spiritual writer. His many books include biographies of Dorothy Day (All is Grace) and Thomas Merton (Living with Wisdom). His most recent book is The Root of War Is Fear: Thomas Merton’s Advice to Peacemakers. He lives in Alkmaar, the Netherlands.