Pope Francis, leader of the world’s one billion Roman Catholics and frequent bestselling author, will offer an inspiring, yet pragmatic, response to the deadly sweep of the Covid pandemic in a new book Let Us Dream: The Path to a Better Future, publisher Simon & Schuster announced Wednesday.
It’s drawn from conversations in English and Spanish between Pope Francis and his biographer, Austen Ivereigh (The Great Reformer: Francis and the Making of a Radical Pope, Holt, 2014), in the weeks following the coronavirus lockdown. The book, due out December 1, will be published in both languages in hardcover and audio formats in the U.S. and by S&S’s international companies in Australia, Canada, India and the U.K. Consulting publisher Steve Rubin and v-p and executive editor Eamon Dolan acquired world rights, first serial rights and audio rights from the agent, William Barry.
“Any wisdom the Pope had to offer would be extremely valuable now,” Dolan said in a statement. “But what made me believe Let Us Dream might actually change the world is how clear and practical his guidance is, and how deeply comforting is the voice with which he delivers it. Here the Pope sounds closer to us—and even kinder—than we’ve ever heard him before.”
Still, the publisher promises, Francis doesn’t hold back. The pope launches a "brilliant, scathing critique of the systems and ideologies that conspired to produce the current crisis, from a global economy obsessed with profit and heedless of the people and environment it harms, to politicians who foment their people’s fear and use it to increase their own power at their people’s expense. He reminds us that Christians’ first duty is to serve others, especially the poor and the marginalized, just as Jesus did.”
Francis will suggest that the path out of crisis is to “build a better world for all humanity by putting the poor and the planet at the heart of new thinking. For this plan, he draws not only on sacred sources, but also on the latest findings from renowned scientists, economists, activists, and other thinkers.
Pope Francis has a second book coming out this fall, Christ in the Storm: An Extraordinary Blessing for the Suffering World ). It centers on the special apostolic blessing he preached to an empty St. Peter’s square at the height of the coronavirus pandemic in Italy. It includes a foreward by journalist John Allen, an introduction University of Notre Dame theology professor, and special features on the history and origins of the prayers and religious artifacts.