On Friday, January 5, 2018
The First Friday Club of Chicago in Cooperation with the Authors Group (Union League Club)
Rev. Greg Boyle, S.J.
Founder, Homeboy Industries
Author, Barking to the Choir
Fr. Boyle will discuss his new book, Barking to the Choir. A moving example of unconditional love in difficult times. The bestselling author of Tattoos on the Heart, Fr. Boyle, shares what three decades of working with gangs in Los Angeles has taught him about faith, compassion, and the enduring power of radical kinship.
In a nation deeply divided and a neighborhood plagued by poverty and violence, Barking to the Choir offers a snapshot into the challenges and joys of life in “the barrio.” Jose, arrested at nine, in a gang by twelve, and serving time shortly thereafter, now works with the substance-abuse team at Homeboy to help young boys find sobriety. Andre, abandoned by his family when he tried to attend school at age seven, gradually finds forgiveness for his schizophrenic mother. New father Hector, who never knew his own father, thinks of a daily adventure story to tell his four-year-old son. These former gang members uplift the soul and reveal how bright life can be when filled with unconditional love and kindness.
In his first book, Tattoos on the Heart, Father Gregory Boyle introduced us to Homeboy Industries, the largest and most successful gang-intervention program in the world. Critics hailed that book as an “astounding literary and spiritual feat” (Publishers Weekly) that is “destined to become a classic of both urban reportage and contemporary spirituality” (Los Angeles Times). Now, after the successful expansion of Homeboy Industries, Boyle returns with Barking to the Choir to reveal how compassion is transforming the neighborhood that boasts the highest concentration of murderous gang activity in Los Angeles.
This collection is guaranteed to shake up our ideas about God and about people with a glimpse at a world defined by more compassion and fewer barriers. Gently and humorously, Barking to the Choir invites us to find kinship with one another and re-convinces us all of our own goodness.