O Death, Where Is Thy Sting?
By: Joe Hoover
What a relief and, strangely, a comfort to be allowed inside a Jesuit brother s own dark nights of questions and quandaries. Readers will feel accompanied in their own profound doubts and sufferings. The load gets lighter shared. --Julia Alvarez, author, Afterlife
Joe Hoover has shaken the theodicean tree and stands among the fallen apples wormy and bruised, laden with grace and gravity. Part Rolling Stone, part Rutter s Requiem, O Death, Where is Thy Sting? serves up sups of Hopkins and Robert Ingersoll, doses of Job, both joyous and sorrowful mysteries, before which we mortals sit in silence, marveling. --Thomas Lynch, author, The Depositions
Joe Hoover has gifted us with an intense, wonderfully poetic, and exceptionally moving interrogation of how we should feel about loss, justice, and holiness amid the upheavals of life. I find it brilliant. --Ron Hansen, author of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
O Death, Where Is Thy Sting? employs stories from unique, compelling angles on everything from philosophy and theology to art, theatre, sports, and social justice as it grapples with suffering. It is a deep exploration of the bleakest and most fearful questions around God’s presence in human suffering and death.
The author creatively weaves together meditations on the poor of El Salvador, the Pine Ridge reservation, the Toronto L’Arche community, the attacks of September 11, the death of the author’s own brother at a young age, and various other encounters. It confronts, denies, and reclaims theology, philosophy, art, and personal stories to grapple with suffering. God wins in the end, yes, but not so easily.
Joe Hoover is a Jesuit brother of the Midwest province. He works as an actor, playwright, and poetry editor at America Media and teaches drama at Brooklyn Jesuit Prep, a middle school in Crown Heights, New York. Br. Hoover has a degree in journalism from Marquette University and graduate degrees in theology from the Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University, and in philosophy from Loyola University Chicago. He has had plays produced in Omaha and New York and has acted in theatre productions nationwide.
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