Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Saffron Cross- Christianity Meets Hinduism

Hello all! Jocelyn here! I know, long time, no post.
I could give you the usual excuses of being busy with the new school year (teaching), with all 3 of my children being in school, and But the truth is that I have simply been lazy. Forgive me.

So, what brings me out of my stupor now? I'm so glad you asked! It's this book:

This story is about the unlikely matching of a Christian Minister (Dana) and a Hindu Monk (Fred). There have been a few books written about interfaith marriages, but none that have covered a Christian/ Hindu relationship- especially with so much feeling and detail.
For those of you who know me, even a little, you know that my usual genre of choice is smut. (That would be romance novels in layman's terms.) There is very little that would make me change the topic on my Kindle screen. For this book, however, I was willing and eager to make an exception.
You see, my sister Joanna is the editor of this book! She works with the Upper Room Publishing House in Nashville, TN and we are so proud of her for using her English major properly! (without having to ask about fries and biggie-sizing!) :)
This book was published through their Fresh Air Books heading, and it certainly was a breath of fresh air. 

I had the pleasure of meeting Dana and Fred this past Sunday when Dana spoke at Belmont United Methodist Church. I attended with my sister, who was there in support of her author. I am so glad I went! Dana and Fred shared pieces of their story, as well as snippets from the book, and I was entranced. I loved hearing about special honeymoon. (I really want you to read the book for yourself, but I found myself laughing and sighing during this chapter.) Just one hour spent with Dana and Fred and I could see what a special team they made. (Check out Dana's website! J. Dana Trent)

 When I attended the book reading/ signing at Parnassus Books on Monday, Dana and Fred again showed their wonderful chemistry and teamwork. Here are a few pictures I got.

Joanna (the editor), Me, and our older (and pregnant) sister Jennifer

With the author Dana Trent!

So, after hearing Dana and Fred on Sunday, I couldn't wait to get the book. Blame it on society's need for instant gratification, but I was very glad that my Kindle is 3G and able to download books from anywhere, say... maybe.... in a pew during church. That's right. DURING CHURCH. The book is about God, so I figured He wouldn't mind. 

Since I began reading it on my Kindle, it just made sense that Dana should sign... my Kindle! I'm totally going to start a trend.

Of course I had to buy paperback as well. There's no way I'm going to loan my Kindle out to anyone. (I'm generous to a fault) Dana graciously signed my paperback as well. I tried to not be too demanding. :)

And Dana with the sisters

So, here are the Top 5 Reasons You Should Buy This Book:

5. My sister is the editor. She worked her tail off to make sure that Dana's book came to fruition and the end result is just fabulous. Plus, it would make my mom really happy. :)

4. It's an easy and pleasurable read. Yes, both Dana and Fred are highly educated in their chosen faiths, but the book is written to share their story with others. It's not full of words that would require the reader ( to have a dictionary handy, or a Masters Degree in Divinity.

3. It has a wonderful attention to detail. The book does an amazing job of "showing" and not just "telling" Dana and Fred's story. To quote Larry the Cucumber, "I laughed. I cried. It moved me, Bob."

2.  It's not just written for couples in interfaith relationships. I am happily married to my hubby and don't plan on ditching him any time soon, but I can see myself using this book in the future. Dana and Fred's marriage is based on communication, understanding, and a shared faith in God. (though practiced in different ways) While I might not use this book in my romantic life, I can see myself using points from it when talking to friends of different faiths. Conversing with people of different beliefs requires both parties to be open in their questioning and sharing. I believe Saffron Cross is a perfect example of the power of open communication.

1. What else have you got to do? Laundry? Dishes? Kids need dinner? Me too, but you don't see me jumping off my couch any time soon!
This book is beautifully written about two individuals deeply in love with each other and with God. Saffron Cross is a beautiful tapestry of their lives interwoven with back-stories , personal trials and successes, and a mutual search of God and His love. And guess what- they find that love, together.

So, seriously, what else have you got to do?