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Fr. Ed Jansen

  • 9
  • reviews
  • 44
  • helpful votes
  • 10
  • ratings
  • The Meaning of Mary Magdalene

  • Discovering the Woman at the Heart of Christianity
  • By: Cynthia Bourgeault
  • Narrated by: Gabra Zackman
  • Length: 7 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 149
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 136
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 134

Mary Magdalene is one of the most influential symbols in the history of Christianity - yet, if you look in the Bible, you'll find only a handful of verses that speak of her. How did she become such a compelling saint in the face of such paltry evidence? In her effort to answer that question, Cynthia Bourgeault examines the Bible, church tradition, art, legend, and newly discovered texts to see what's there.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Forever Changed

  • By Fr. Ed Jansen on 11-02-15

Forever Changed

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-02-15

Where does The Meaning of Mary Magdalene rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I can honestly say it is at the top of the list.

What did you like best about this story?

It was written by someone who has lived, studied and contemplated the topic for many, many years. The idea of the church being formed by "male, celibate monastics" caused a major shift in my perspective. This combination resonated with me as a major cause of movement away from the Beginning Church.

Which scene was your favorite?

I have celebrated the Mass for many years and today, it was different for me; it was different as a result of Cynthia's presentation of what "This is my Body" means. I am forever changed and eternally grateful....and I get it!

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

This Is My Body is not what you think

Any additional comments?

This book is for those who are open to a new way of looking at Christ, women, Mary M and the Church. If you're a conservative Roman Catholic or Evangelical, I suspect you won't like her or this book unless the Holy Spirit is drawing you into a deeper love relationship with God. I caution the reader, though. Hold onto your hat. She will say things that might shake you up; she may say things that might upset you. But hang in there. LISTEN to what she says, take it in, pray about it. I confess I was ready, at one point, to put the book down and not pick it up. Truly. But today, after the 2nd reading of it, I deeply sense she is a modern day prophet worthy of your time to read or listen to what she has to say.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Popes and the Papacy: A History

  • By: Thomas F. X. Noble, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Thomas F. X. Noble
  • Length: 12 hrs and 15 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 204
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 187
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 182

Despite the papacy's enormous influence, how much do you really know about this ancient and powerful institution? Catholics and non-Catholics alike will enjoy these 24 illuminating lectures about this remarkable institution. Professor Noble gives you priceless insights into the dramatic history of the papal office and the lives of the men who represented it. Filled with interesting stories and remarkable insights, this course promises to educate, enlighten, and entertain you.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent Series

  • By David I. Williams on 05-12-15

Engaging Professor - Easy listening

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-29-15

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. It offered a good history of the Papacy with an incredible amount of detail on many of the Popes. It also engaged the listener in areas of theology and church history.

Any additional comments?

A great presentation by an enthusiastic teacher. I was hoping for a neutral, scholarly perspective and was encouraged in the beginning when he raised the fact that there are questions of whether or not Peter was ever in Rome, let alone be its first bishop. But he seemed to become more and more of a "company man" as the teaching progressed. He kind of lost me when he tried to suggest that the Roman Catholic Church was not wealthy. He even suggested that the artwork was nothing the church would ever sell. I wanted to talk back to him and ask him one question: "What about all the real estate it owns around the world?" But don't let that deter you from listening to him. He does a great job even if his bias becomes very clear as time goes on in his teaching.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Proof of Heaven

  • A Neurosurgeon's Near-Death Experience and Journey into the Afterlife
  • By: Eben Alexander
  • Narrated by: Eben Alexander
  • Length: 6 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,670
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,217
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,239

On November 10, 2008, Dr. Eben Alexander was driven into coma by a disease so lethal that only 1 in 10,000,000 survive. Seven days later, he awakened with memories of a fantastic odyssey deep into another realm that were more real than this earthly one - memories that included meeting a deceased birth sister he had never known existed. Dr. Alexander deployed all his knowledge as a scientist to find out whether his mind could have played a trick on him. In its shutdown state, there was no way it could have.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Compelling

  • By Kelly on 10-27-12

A Marriage of Faith and Science

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-06-15

What did you love best about Proof of Heaven?

Dr. Alexander's desire to share his most intimate thoughts about his life experiences.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Proof of Heaven?

When he spoke of the realization that it was his sister who spoke to him from the wings of a butterfly.

Have you listened to any of Eben Alexander’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Throughout the book Dr. Alexander communicated a sense of mission and purpose; to share his near death experience with others so that they might find hope in this life and love in the afterlife.

Any additional comments?

One does not have to agree with the author's theological conclusions in this book to make the reading/listening of it be meaningful. It is a rare quality to "see" such conviction on the subject matter presented in such a personal, yet scientific way; AND written with a great deal of love. Great book. Thank you Dr. Alexander. Keep on keeping on. :-)

Sapiens
    A Brief History of Humankind
    
        By:
        












    





    





    
        
            
            
                
            
        
        Yuval Noah Harari
    
    


    
    
        Narrated by:
        












    





    





    
        
            
            
                
            
        
        Derek Perkins
    
    


    
    Length: 15 hrs and 18 mins
    18,055 ratings
    Overall 4.7
  • Sapiens

  • A Brief History of Humankind
  • By: Yuval Noah Harari
  • Narrated by: Derek Perkins
  • Length: 15 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,055
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16,077
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15,984

One hundred thousand years ago, at least six human species inhabited the Earth. Today there is just one. Us. Homo sapiens. How did our species succeed in the battle for dominance? Why did our foraging ancestors come together to create cities and kingdoms? How did we come to believe in gods, nations, and human rights; to trust money, books, and laws; and to be enslaved by bureaucracy, timetables, and consumerism?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Sums it up nicely

  • By Mark on 05-15-15

I have three qustions

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-30-15

What disappointed you about Sapiens?

I sense the author has a "bone to pick" with people of faith. At least that's how he came across to me. His approach is scholarly to the extent of the research. He lost me when he went out of his way to belittle people of faith and their practices as though they are at some base existence. It's one thing to be theistic. It's another thing to be atheistic. I can understand both positions. But this author comes across as anti-theistic. It is this anti-theistic presentation that robs the book of being a scholarly work. All of us view our world with our perspective. I believe the scholarly approach would have been for him to own this perspective and presented the research without the snide commentary.

What does Derek Perkins bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Derek Perkins did a beautiful job in reading the book. Most enjoyable voice.

Any additional comments?

My three questions are this: 1. Why did the author go out of his way to ridicule a god, that in his own mind, does not exist? 2. Where did matter, (the elements) come from? 3. And if matter did not come from a creator, then can you prove your belief with scientific evidence or are you stuck, like the rest of us humans, having to accept certain things in life, on faith?

8 of 21 people found this review helpful

  • The Apocalypse: Controversies and Meaning in Western History

  • By: Craig R. Koester, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Craig R. Koester
  • Length: 12 hrs and 25 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 123
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 111
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 108

Get an authoritative guide to this extraordinary work in 24 thought-provoking and enlightening lectures, divided into three parts: the historical and intellectual background of the Apocalypse; a close reading of John's text, focusing on the meaning of its images; and the wide-ranging impact of the book on Christian and Western history. Throughout these lectures, Professor Koester focuses on what John actually wrote. what his situation tells us about his meaning, how that meaning can be applied to our own lives, and how contemporary biblical scholars relate Revelation to the modern world.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Educational

  • By SAMA on 12-19-13

Outstanding Scholarship

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-16-15

What did you love best about The Apocalypse: Controversies and Meaning in Western History?

Looking at Revelation from a literary perspective brought new understanding for me.

Have you listened to any of Professor Craig R. Koester’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I wish the professor had more teachings available. I thoroughly appreciated his academic approach, presenting his understanding as well as other perspectives.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

The book of Revelation is not about the future, rather a classic writing that speaks to people of any time and culture.

Any additional comments?

I couldn't help thinking that the U.S. today is very much like the imperialistic Roman Empire at the time Revelation was written. We are also a culture that embraces power and violence; which caused me to wonder if my country, the United States of America, isn't the "Whore of Babylon."

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • In the Footsteps of St. Paul

  • By: Richard Rohr
  • Narrated by: Richard Rohr
  • Length: 7 hrs and 34 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 87
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 75
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 78

In retracing the second and third missionary trips of St. Paul, Father Richard Rohr breaks open the life of this saint, recasting him as a mystic and as the first Christian theologian. Rohr presents Paul's revolutionary and all-embracing vision and invites us to enter into the mystery of Christ and be transformed. Rohr breaks new ground by applying up-to-date theories of our universe, integrating them with Paul's revolutionary thinking about sin, saints, and spirituality.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A great spiritual journey!

  • By Chandler on 05-04-15

Parts were excellent parts were annoying

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-05-15

I love his teaching and he doesn't give you much room to think outside of his Franciscan box. There's almost an arrogance about his perspective which left me feeling diminished and underdeveloped because I did not always agree with his assumptions. I grew weary of hearing the term "tribal", feeling more like a judgement than a description when it did not line up with his perspective. With that said he brings a powerful message of hope and love and redemption for all.

2 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • When the Church Was Young

  • Voices of the Early Fathers
  • By: Marcellino D'Ambrosio
  • Narrated by: Marcellino D'Ambrosio
  • Length: 9 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 604
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 529
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 529

Marcellino D'Ambrosio dusts off what might have been just dry theology to bring you the exciting stories of great heroes such as Ambrose, Augustine, Basil, Athanasius, John Chrysostom, and Jerome. These brilliant, embattled, and sometimes eccentric men defined the biblical canon, hammered out the Creed, and gave us our understanding of sacraments and salvation. It is they who preserved the rich legacy of the early Church for us.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Masterful summary of the early Church Fathers

  • By Mike C on 08-22-14

A Roman Catholic Apologetic

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-24-15

Would you try another book from Marcellino D'Ambrosio and/or Marcellino D'Ambrosio?

Yes, knowing it would probably be another Roman Catholic Apologetic

What about Marcellino D'Ambrosio’s performance did you like?

He was enthusiastic about his topic and well informed.

Any additional comments?

I found myself talking back to the author when he would state his opinion as fact. It lacked a scholarly approach that would have presented other opinions and/or perspectives. If you want to understand the justification for Roman Catholic dogma, this is an excellent representation. I just got bored with his perspective after awhile. Sad. It had some good content.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Falling Upward

  • A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life
  • By: Richard Rohr
  • Narrated by: Richard Rohr
  • Length: 6 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,779
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,519
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,500

In the first half of life, we are naturally preoccupied with establishing ourselves; climbing, achieving, and performing. But as we grow older and encounter challenges and mistakes, we need to see ourselves in a different and more life-giving way. This message of falling down - that is in fact moving upward - is the most resisted and counterintuitive of messages in the world's religions. Falling Upward offers a new paradigm for understanding one of the most profound of life's mysteries: how those who have fallen down are the only ones who understand "up".

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I almost gave up on Christianity until I read this

  • By J. Mark Wells on 09-03-14

Gracious living

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-12-13

What did you love best about Falling Upward?

I sense it is an inspired writing about how to live out the second half of our life with an open heart and mind; to live with joy, gratitude and graciousness. In the book, Rohr confronted some of my first half of life thinking and gave me an explanation about what I am experiencing today. It has made me even more grateful for my life and where I am today in this aging process. I recommend it for anyone over 40 (I wish I would have read it then). I do not recommend it for those who are still entrenched in their first half of life thinking where there is an absence of curiosity and the presence of absolute certainty....about anything.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

no

Any additional comments?

It may take a second "reading" before Rohr's teachings can be full absorbed and appreciated.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Red Letter Revolution

  • What If Jesus Really Meant What He Said?
  • By: Shane Claiborne, Tony Campolo
  • Narrated by: Stu Gray, Henry O. Arnold
  • Length: 7 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 69
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 61
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 62

Best-selling authors Shane Claiborne and Tony Campolo talk candidly about the life and teaching of Jesus and the wisdom he offers our fractured world. It is time to re-imagine the world and the way we live - the old patterns of politics, economics, and religion that aren’t working. It’s time for a new kind of Christianity. In Red Letter Revolution, best-selling authors Shane Claiborne and Tony Campolo take on the hardest issues facing our world.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Spot on.....but

  • By Fr. Ed Jansen on 03-27-13

Spot on.....but

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-27-13

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, with caution about their practice of eisegesis.

What other book might you compare Red Letter Revolution to and why?

It is quite unique although it follows much of what the emerging church espouses.

Have you listened to any of Stu Gray and Chip Arnold ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

no.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

no.

Any additional comments?

Claiborne and Campolo work well together. I personally believe their views of the church today and their response is where Christianity needs to move. With that said, it drove me nuts listening to them quote book, chapter and verse almost every minute to prove their point. The very thing they criticize of other Christians, they do themselves. Had they presented their ideas (based upon their understanding of the Scriptures) without the eisegesis, it might have made them more credible biblical scholars. So, if you can get past this, their ideas and practices are, in my opinion, spot-on for the Church today.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful