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Hope in Action

In his new book published in September, Cardinal Vincent explores the contribution of faith to society. The book is based on a series of talks and lectures he had given, mainly during the Year of Mercy.

As he explains in the preface, the Cardinal looks at ‘what we mean by Christian hope, and what it means to be a disciple with a mission’. As Archbishop Justin Welby amplifies in the Forward, this is a ‘book about practical hope, hope for every day, everywhere and every person. It is about recognising and nurturing signs of hope around us. It is about the hope that faithfulness in the small things of life can make a difference that reaches far beyond what we can imagine; hope that rests on God’s incommensurable love for human beings and the power of his Spirit at work within us and without us.’

The chapters that follow focus on ‘the importance of mercy and some particular situations in which God asks us to put our Christian hope into action’. These situations include some of the more pressing problems that face society, such as sexual violence and abuse, human trafficking and slavery, the treatment of prisoners, and religious extremism.

This slim volume concludes with an epilogue on what makes us human. Tears shed at the problems and injustices of the world, as a mark of our humanity, ‘must move us in ways that will help to heal these wounds,’ he explains. ‘We must strive to bring God’s hope and mercy to the world. For this is our calling, our God-given mission.’