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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 20 September 2003
“Crossing The Threshold Of Hope” originated out of a planned televised interview of Pope John Paul II by an Italian journalist. When the Pope's schedule forced the cancellation of the interview the project seemed to have lapsed. A few months later the journalist was surprised when His Holiness provided written answers to the questions which had been posed, hence, this book.
In this book we read Pope John Paul II’s views on a variety of the issues which capture the imagination of the modern public. Among the topics covered are The Papacy, Prayer, and How the Pope Prays. He expounds on Jesus, His role as the Son of God, the existence of God and its proof and why God seems to be hiding. We listen at the feet of the Master as he explains the meaning of salvation, comments on the multitude of religions, evangelization and the future of the Church. The Pope’s enthusiasm for the young and his passion for human rights leap from the pages.
The reader of this book gets the kernel of John Paul II’s teaching condensed into a book which is readable and understandable to a broad range of the public. The message of this spokesman for Christ comes through clearly and forcefully. I cannot recommend this book too highly. Be Not afraid! Pick up and Read!
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HALL OF FAMEon 4 April 2005
Pope John Paul II will be remembered in history for many things: as a world traveler, as the champion of the West over and against the Communist regimes of Europe, and as a theologian of skill and insight. Some of this insight is captured in this book, 'Crossing the Threshold of Hope', in which an Italian journalist, Vittorio Messori, quizzes the Pope on his theological, ecclesiological and biblical beliefs. Messori asks thoughtful, probing questions, and the Pope does not shrink from addressing hard questions.
One of the first questions in the book might well be summed up in a sense as 'who do you think you are?' Messori asks this with all its possible meanings; the Pope addresses the answers - does the Pope represent anything more than the remnant of powerful historical mythology, or is there something more? The Pope recasts the question, as he does occasionally in this text, seeking greater clarification. Rather than answering the question 'who do you think you are?', he changes it to 'why be afraid of who you are?' This is question that applies not simply to the Pope, but to all of us, as we stand before God as part of God's creation.
The portion of the text that deals with Mariology is particularly interesting, given Pope John Paul II's particular devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. Here one gets some of the deepest of emotions from the Pope, as he talks about his spiritual life in both mystical and practical terms.
This is not a systematic theology; it is more a series of reflective responses to questions posed by someone outside formal theological tradition (although it is obvious that Messori's questions have theological depth). This spans the life of the Pope, from his early days in Poland to recent times in the Vatican; he refers to theologians and figures Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox, as well as people beyond the Christian traditions. He speaks with hopefulness toward a day when there will be greater Christian unity, and cooperation and mutual community with other religious traditions such as Judaism.
This is a good text in which to see the heart of the Pope.
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on 10 April 2005
I was absorbed by this book, having just read Memory and Identity. This book truly reflects on how the church can celebrate difference and still be united in its mission to the world. Truly Christ died for the world and it is in this spirit that the answers are made to the very vital questions that are asked. All religions have a place but Christ is the way to the Father through His sacrifice on the Cross which no other religious leader was called to do. It is this that marks Jesus as the way to salvation and He is the hope of the world. I think any christian or non christian will be challenged by this book and all divisions will fade away as the Truth is seen and received. I pray that with the passing of the Pope that his writings will have a more powerful place in leading other's in the way of Truth.
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on 19 October 2009
Pope John Paul II was, for many, the man of the twentieth century. An academic philosopher of religion, a secretely-trained priest under nazi and communist oppression, an evangelical preacher, and a Pope who made so many believe again in the person and role of St Peter's successor.

Karol's works are not easy reads. In an age of lightweight commentaries and soundbites, he invites you to absorb and think. His words are reminiscent of listening in to beautiful music or looking at rich paintings. You have to stop, sit and take time, but you will be richly rewarded.

I first read this book over a decade ago and have revisited it often. In my copy the pages are now a bit loose and the cover is fading. Every time I read it I learn more about how this great man understood his calling to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It would perhaps be fashionable in the secular west to poo-poo such Christian simplicity, but it would be wrong to underestimate the power of this man's thoughts against the background of his life and education in Poland.

If you are willing to take the time, do sit with his other books. They are not just beautiful on the bookshelf, but also to the thinking mind. In a non-religious world of easy, throw-away commentary it is good to be reminded that there is better to be had.
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on 20 July 2013
It was a perfect birthday present for my brother as its light weight and not bulky. The price was really competative too.
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on 24 March 2011
A nice book to read, but not a book for study. My copy had somebody else's opinion already marked on the pages.
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on 6 October 2015
A truly wonderful, insightful book by Pope John Paul I I
A classic in its time.
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on 15 January 2016
Good read
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