"A uniquely alive, wonderful narrative."--Nadine Gordimer
"This book is a wonderful testament to what the Gospel can make happen."—Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury
"Michael's life represents a compelling metaphor . . . a foreigner who came to our country and was transformed. His life is part of the tapestry of the many long journeys and struggles of our people."—Nelson Mandela
"I believe this book will inspire people from all walks of life who struggle to triumph over evil and injustice both individually and collectively."--Danny Glover
"This most amazing memoir of a man who writes he 'has never made a distinction between human liberation and my Christian witness.' . . . With dry, self-deprecating wit, Lapsley treats readers to an emotional, gripping tale of a priest, his prosthetics, and his promise, as St. Teresa of Avila put it, to be Christ's hands in the world."—Publishers’ Weekly
In 1990, Fr. Michael Lapsley, an Anglican priest active in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa, opened a letter bomb that nearly killed him. Though he survived, the blast took both his hands and one of his eyes. This memoir tells the story of this horrendous event, beginning with the journey that led him there—particularly his rising awareness of the radical demands of the gospel and his growing identification with the freedom struggle. But that was not the end of his inspiring journey. In post-apartheid South Africa, Lapsley saw a whole nation in need of healing. He discovered a new vocation: drawing on his own experience of trauma to promote the healing of others, in South Africa, and ultimately throughout the world.
Michael Lapsley, born in New Zealand, joined the Society of the Sacred Mission, and was sent to South Africa in 1973. There he became active in the antiapartheid movement, ultimately joining the African National Congress. After surviving an assassination attempt, he returned to South Africa to found the Institute for Healing of Memories.
Stephen Karakashian is an American psychotherapist who has worked with Fr. Michael and the institute in South Africa, and the United States. He lives in Portland.