"To be honest, at this point only two things interest me: my oncologist's advice and if you can teach me to pray."
So began a two-year correspondence between a medical doctor who became a priest, Benedictine monk, and now prior of Montserrat-the monastery that is a spiritual, cultural, historical, and environmental icon in Catalonia-and an accomplished and beloved cardiologist, scientist, mentor, daughter, sister, wife, mother, and friend with a newly diagnosed lung tumor. In this profoundly honest book, two spiritual seekers on two different life-paths walk together through the valley of the shadow of death, praying the psalms in joy and anguish, doubt and praise.
The letters and conversations shared between Magda and Fr. Ignasi offer deep and poignant insights into the very human-and quotidian-dynamics of the life-and-death journey we all face.
Publisher: Liturgical Press
Number of pages: 168
Weight: 227 g
Dimensions: 216 x 140 x 13 mm
"One of life's great challenges is to walk genuinely through the valley of the shadow of death with another human being, maintaining the mystery, not taking refuge behind easy, stock answers. This lovely book tells a story of when it happened-through unfailing relationships and through learning to pray the Psalms. Delicate, sensitive, and highly insightful." The Reverend Dr. James O. Chatham, Pastor, Presbyterian Church (USA)
"This riveting book documents the journey of an internationally-renowned cardiologist and scientist in her fight against cancer. An adventurous read, the book makes the reader eager to find out the progress and outcome of treatment. Under the guidance of a monk, author Magda Heras navigated the book of Psalms for prayer and inspiration in each event she faced on her journey. Equipped with her strong faith and personal relationship with the Lord, Heras feared no evil, even as she walked through the darkest valleys of life. Her witness in connecting faith and science reminds us intellectuals to ponder the ever-important life questions, `What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?'"Dr. Kai-Nan An, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine
"This book, while written in simple conversation, has a powerful message for all of us. Death comes in different ways but comes unavoidably to everyone. The dialogue between a Benedictine priest and an accomplished medical doctor reveals the tangle of emotions that emerge as the reality of death inexorably draws near. The book is not only enlightening but certainly worth a second reading."Irene Nowell, OSB, author of Wisdom: The Good Life
"What a beautiful book this is-one about dying, yes, but at least equally about living well, with a fully-human spirit open to deepening friendship, to the development of prayer life (especially through the medium of the Psalms) and to appreciation of the created world. Magda and Ignasi's correspondence is never saccharine or self-pitying; it acknowledges difficulties both spiritual and material. Yet it ultimately demonstrates-with instruction and reflection, questioning, lyricism, humor, and matter-of-fact description of the progress of cancer-how alive we can be, how much we can give each other even as life wanes. I wish I'd had this book when my husband was dying a decade and a half ago; I'm certainly going to share it with my hospice patients."Susan H. Swetnam, author of In the Mystery's Shadow: Reflections on Caring for the Elderly and Dying
"Even Though I Walk captures the magnificent humanity and steadfast courage of Dr. Magda Heras. Through her spiritual pilgrimage with the increasing reality of a dwindling number of days in this life, Magda's writings inspire the most doubting skeptic. Knowing her in health was a joy and privilege but sharing her intimate ponderings as she approached death is a munificent treasure. This book should have special meaning to those deny the intersection of faith and science or those who search in vain for a `cat with five feet.'"Michael B. Wood, MD, Emeritus President and CEO, Mayo Clinic