The Way of Mercy

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“We are called to show mercy, because mercy has first been shown to us.” —Pope Francis

In proclaiming the Jubilee Year of Mercy, Pope Francis has called on the entire church to to “open our hearts to those living on the outermost fringes of society” which means “opening our eyes to see the misery of the world, the wounds of our brothers and sisters who are denied their dignity” and to “recognize that we are compelled to heed their cry for help.”

Responding to this call, The Way of Mercy features essays and meditations on this gospel theme, beginning with the text of Pope Francis for the Year of Mercy, as well as reflections on mercy by theologians such as Walter Kasper, Jon Sobrino, and Leonardo Boff, and beloved spiritual writers including Thomas Merton, Dorothy Day, Jim Forest, Joan Chittister, and Joyce Rupp, as well as poems by jessica Powers and R.S. Thomas.  They reflect on Jesus and the ethics of mercy, on a “church of mercy,” on the spiritual and corporal “works of mercy,” and on ways to foster mercy in our lives and in our prayer.

The Way of Mercy closes with Pope Francis’s Prayer for the Jubilee Year of Mercy, a good prayer to carry us into this special year and into the years to come.


  • The Mercy of God by Jessica Powers
  • The Face of Mercy, and The Embrace of Mercy by Pope Francis
  • Mercy, by Walter Kasper
  • Christianity and Jesus, by Leonardo Boff
  • Blessed Are the Merciful . . . by Jim Forest
  • The Samaritan Church and the Principle of Mercy, by Jon Sobrino
  • The Climate of Mercy, by Thomas Merton
  • The Corporal Works of Mercy and the Spiritual Works of Mercy, by James F. Keenan, S.J.
  • What Is the Place of the Spiritual Works of Mercy in Our Life Together? by Sidney Callahan
  • Divine Mercy--the Audacity of Mercy, by Joan Chittister
  • Living in the Mercy, by Elaine M. Prevallet, S.L.
  • God's Mercy Is Infinite, and Making Myself Aware of God's Mercy, by Joyce Rupp
  • Kyrie by R.S. Thomas
  • Pope Francis' Prayer for the Jubilee Year of Mercy

Christine M. Bochen is professor of religious studies at Nazareth College, Rochester, New York. Particularly well-known for her work as a scholar of Thomas Merton, she is co-author of The Thomas Merton Encyclopedia and has edited The Courage for Truth, one of the volumes of Merton’s collected letters, Learning to Love, the sixth volume of his journals, and Thomas Merton: Essential Writings.

Book Details

The Way of Mercy
Christine M. Bochen
Pope Francis, Thomas Merton, Joyce Rupp, many more
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The Way of Mercy Table of Contents 160 Kb