I am not usually drawn to reading novels, but as I started into “Chasing Francis” I was hooked, but not for the reasons you might think. The book does offer an intriguing plotline where a mega-church pastor suffers a crisis of faith and has to travel to Italy to discover what “true” Christianity really is. But the hook for me was finding out how Cron would develop this plotline. In the end I was very much disappointed. Cron is a typical “emergent church” kind of guy who is quick to point out all the flaws modern evangelical Christianity, but terribly weak on solutions. As I read though the book, it felt like I was reading emergent church guru, Brian McLaren and his “A New Kind of Christian” trilogy instead of Ian Morgan Cron. Apparently, instead of looking to Jesus and the Bible, we need to look to a 12th century Catholic saint to find out what Christianity is all about. Not surprisingly, given his Catholic bent, you end up with a works –based theology where “trusting in Jesus” takes a back seat to “living like Jesus.”
I would encourage you to not waste your time with this book, and if you do decide to read it – read it carefully and discerningly. As I said earlier, this is nothing new if you are familiar with the emergent church, but Cron has just spiced it up a little by packaging it in story form.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”