At the age of sixteen, Ian Morgan Cron was told by his mother that his father, a motion picture executive, worked with the CIA in Europe. This astonishing revelation, coupled with his father's dark struggle with alcoholism, upends the world of a teenager struggling to become a man.
When I first discovered the grainy picture in my mothers deskme as a towheaded two year old sitting in what I remember was a salmon-orange-stained lifeboatI was overwhelmed by the feeling that the boy in the boat was not waving and laughing at the person snapping the photo as much as he was frantically trying to get the attention of the man I am today. The boy was beckoning me to join him on a voyage through the harrowing straits of memory. He was gambling that if we survived the passage, we might discover an ocean where the past would become the wind at our back rather than a driving gale to the nose of our boat. This book is the record of that voyage.
When he was sixteen years old, Ian Morgan Cron was told about his fathers clandestine work with the CIA. This astonishing revelation, coupled with his fathers dark struggles with chronic alcoholism and depression, upended the world of a boy struggling to become a man. Decades later, as he faces his own personal demons, Ian realizes the only way to find peace is to voyage back through a painful childhood marked by extremesprivilege and poverty, violence and tenderness, truth and deceitthat hes spent years trying to escape.
In this surprisingly funny and forgiving memoir, Ian reminds us that no matter how different the pieces may be, in the end we are all cut from the same cloth, stitched by faith into an exquisite quilt of grace.
Simultaneously redemptive and consoling with bright moments of humor . . . this story is chock-full of sacredness and hope. Cron is one of only a few spirituality authors who could articulate these themes as poignantly.
Ian Cron writes with astonishing energy and freshness; his metaphors stick fast in the imagination. This is neither a simple memoir of hurt endured, nor a tidy story of reconciliation and resolution. It israther like Augustines Confessionsa testimony to the unfinished business of grace.
DR. ROWAN WILLIAMS, Archbishop of Canterbury
Ian Cron has the gift of making his human journey a parable for all of our journeys. Read this profound book and be well fed, and freed.
FR. RICHARD ROHR, O.F.M., author of Everything Belongs
Ian Morgan Cron is a brilliant writer. This is the kind of book that you dont just read. It reads you.
MARK BATTERSON, author of In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day
Ian Morgan Cron is an author and nationally recognized speaker. His spiritual memoir Jesus, My Father, the CIA, and Me: A Memoir...of Sorts was a Wall Street Journal bestseller and a featured title in the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers program. Ian lives in Tennessee with his wife, and three children. Website: www.iancron.com.
"Ian is an absolutely magnificent writer, and this memoir is a stunning work. With Miles Davis and squirrels and weddings and Red Bull and fawns and cliff divingit's like he has this bottomless bucket of images and metaphors and they're all so spot-on brilliant. The prose is light and loose and free, and then there are these moments when there's just so much soul right on the page. I literally had to put the book down several times because I began tearing up. What a gift!" - Rob Bell, bestselling author of Love Wins and Velvet Elvis
"Ian Cron is a brilliant writer. This is the kind of book that you dont just read. It reads you." - Mark Batterson, bestselling author of In the Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day
"Simply the best memoir I have read in years. It is engaging, clever, heartbreaking, and God-drenched in all the right ways." - Phyllis Tickle, The Great Emergence: How Christianity Is Changing and Why
"Just like Donald Miller's "Blue Like Jazz" Ian Morgan Cron has written a daring and moving memoir in which abounding joy and grace defeat despair and the disintegration of the human spirit. These confessional pages illuminate for all of us the path toward forgiveness." - Makoto Fujimura, artist, author and founder of International Arts Movement
Ian Morgan Cron served for ten years as the Founding and Senior Pastor of Trinity Church in Greenwich, Conn., a non-denominational community committed to social justice as well as to communicating the Christian story through the arts. Now he is an Episcopal priest, speaker, retreat leader, and songwriter. Cron is also a doctoral student at Fordham University where he is focusing his studies on Christian spirituality and the work of Thomas Merton. In his spare time he enjoys hiking, traveling, and kayaking. He divides his time between homes in Tennessee and Connecticut with his wife and three children, and his Portuguese Water Dog, Hobbes.
For good and ill, parents shape their children's lives in several ways. For decades, Episcopal priest Cron (Chasing Francis: A Pilgrim's Tale) bore the scars of having grown up with an emotionally distant alcoholic father. His story is heartbreaking and brutal, but simultaneously redemptive and consoling with bright moments of humor. An agent for the CIA, Cron's father was an enigma to his family and lacked the resources, financial and psychological, to take care of them. When he slides deeper into depression and alcoholism, Cron's heroic mother struggles to support the family, leaving Cron in the care of a warm and nurturing nanny. Their relationship is touching, but also serves to highlight the dysfunction in this family. Cron eventually succumbs to alcoholism, too, and spends years denying the problem until a trusted therapist challenges him to face it. The author finds the courage to release the repressed inner pain that he had been self-medicating through booze, and begins a slow healing process. While there are not many overtly religious passages, this story is chock-full of sacredness and hope. Cron is one of only a few contemporary spirituality authors who could articulate these themes as poignantly. (June 2) Copyright 2011 Reed Business Information.