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The Scandal of Redemption: When God Liberates the Poor, Saves Sinners, and Heals Nations

4.46  ·  Rating details ·  121 ratings  ·  27 reviews
To find out why Pope Francis is making Oscar Romero a saint, read the words that cost him his life.

"A church that does not provoke crisis, a gospel that does not disturb, a word of God that does not touch the concrete sin of the society in which it is being proclaimed - what kind of gospel is that?"

Three short years transformed El Salvador's Archbishop Oscar Romero from a
Paperback, 139 pages
Published March 24th 2018 by Plough Publishing House
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Apr 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This slender book is powerful beyond its size, just as Oscar Romero, soon to be sainted, was powerful beyond his size. It is a collection of Romero's radio broadcasts and diaries.

As Romero writes, "...a saint is nothing else than the full realization of a life according to the design of God." Romero reached his own realization by preaching a gospel of peace, of justice in a society (El Salvador) that rejected him and his words, the words of Christ. He preached a gospel that would not just
D.L. Mayfield
Apr 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
a short and gorgeous introduction to the sermons of Oscar Romero. Breathtakingly beautiful and Christ-centered, these sermons are steeped in Romero's love for the poor and suffering in his own country. But even more powerful is his love and prayers for repentance and redemption for those in power who ultimately took his life and inadvertently amplified his message.
Jul 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: biography
Summary: Diary entries and radio broadcast homilies by the martyred Archbishop of El Salvador, capturing both the injustices that moved him and the gospel message of hope he proclaimed to the oppressed people that eventuated in his death.

Oscar Romero became the Archbishop of El Salvador in 1977, considered a "safe" choice who wouldn't rile the oligarchs--until one of his priests, Rutillo Grande was shot down by a gunman connected to an alliance of government and oligarchs who controlled the
Pam Cipkowski
This slim volume gives readers an idea of the draw of this newly canonized saint to the people of El Salvador and ultimately, to people around the world. A short introduction on Who Was Oscar Romero? is followed by a selection of his sermons, radio broadcasts, and diary entries.

Initially, Romero wished to stay neutral in his opinions regarding the government corruption in El Salvador, but it came to a point where he could no longer stay silent. People were mesmerized by his sermons which spoke
Dec 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, religion
Blessed Archbishop Óscar Romero has often been lauded as an advocate and martyr for the oppressed, poor and otherwise downtrodden, an advocate for peace within a world of violence. This collection offers topical selections from the writings of Archbishop Romero, spanning from personal letters and journal entries to sermons and radio talks. It also includes a brief biography of the man, which provides great context for understanding the regional theological framework and local political climate ...more
Joseph J.
Sep 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Those seeking peace in our world
This rich book of lived faith was my companion as Hurricane Florence bore down directly upon me. This is the third in a Plough Publishing House series I have read and reviewed, the others being words by Simone Weil and Dorothy Day. Weil sought identity with the poor while avoiding organized religion. Day brought her strong Catholicism to meet the poor and forgotten in a lifelong mission of identity and service. In Oscar Romero we have a formal representative of the Catholic Church-an ...more
Nathan Albright
Nov 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: challenge2017
[Note:  This book was given free of charge by Net Gallery/Plough Publishing House.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.]

Sometimes books, like other creations (this happens a lot especially in songs and movies) suffer because of a problem of framing.  One may find a great deal that is praiseworthy in content that is presented, but one finds the framing of that content to be troublesome, and one hesitates to praise the content because the person who wrote this book is being co-opted for an
Jun 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
From the first time I heard of Oscar Romero, he became a hero of mine. The Catholic Archbishop of El Salvador stood up to the powers of corrupt government and violent rebels and preached the radical Gospel of non-violence and enemy love. He was assassinated on March 24, 1980 while celebrating the Eucharist.

Here are some of his last words:
May this body that was immolated and this flesh that was sacrificed for humankind also nourish us so that we can give our bodies and our blood to suffering
Luke Hillier
Jan 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Romero was obviously an incredibly powerful figure and left behind a breathtaking legacy, so there was no doubt that this relatively short collection of sermons and journal entries would be worthwhile. For whatever reason, I didn't necessarily find myself enthralled with them, and it took longer than anticipated to finish reading. My guess is that his words would be more gripping if they were heard spoken aloud and in his original language (aka as they were initially delivered). Along those ...more
Apr 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Like "The Violence of Love", this book is a compilation of Romero's sermons, although these appear to be complete homilies. In addition, the chapters are interspersed with notes from Romero's diary. If there is a narrative in this book, it is in Romero's diary excerpts. The homilies are the bulk of this book. Reading them and meditating on them will give you a deep understanding of Romero. Romero's life and words are a challenge to the status-quo of religiosity in the service of oligarchic rule ...more
Jun 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Plough Publishing's The Scandal of Redemption is a collection of radio addresses, interspersed with personal journals, from Archbishop Oscar Romero, in the couple of years leading up to his death. It's a very short, slender introduction to a powerful priest of the Church, who continues to challenge the Body of Christ in the world. For Romero, "a saint is nothing else than the full realization of a life according to the design of God". This collection brings the spiritual depth of that life, ...more
Andrew Micah
Mar 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
When I was employed at Feed My Starving Children I had the opportunity to visit the nation of El Salvador for a week. As part of the trip we paid visits to the church where Romero preached and the his parsonage, which is now a museum in his honor. Our trip leader recommended this little book of Romero's sermons to us, and through its pages I was rocked by an encounter with the faith and courage of a true martyr. This book has become one of my favorites and I return to it often. He was a man of ...more
Russell Fox
Oct 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
This books is a wonderful collection of Bishop Romero's writings, up to and including his final sermon before he was assassinated. In this short selection, we read Romero testifying to the connection between God's blessings and the land (hence the need for agrarian reform and bringing land ownership in line with the needs of the poor), between personal sin and social sin (reversing the usual assumption, Romero points out that it is easy to fault society, but difficult to take personal ...more
Sep 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I cannot even begin to discuss this book except to say, a lot of crying, a lot of raising my fists and a lot of shaking my head in shame for what others have done, especially from those who claim to know Christ. And also in reflection of where the church is now and how people are, I just feel Oscar Romero did what we, as the children of God, are supposed to do always til the day we die and what really are we doing? I just... read it if you are a believer or not and you will see what ...more
Dora Okeyo
Mar 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
I was reading this book while listening to the BBC news in the background yesterday and was intrigued when I heard that the Vatican had declared that Oscar Romero would be canonized into a Saint.
This book provides insights on the man and his fight against an oppression, especially from a state and a people who expected him to stay silent and stick to his priestly duties. I was saddened upon reading about how he was assassinated and do hope that his legacy does live on. This was an eARC from
Mary Helene
Not really a biography, but a collection of themes from his sermons so expertly arranged that I thought it was one sermon until partway through, when I realized the footnotes in the back referenced the variou source sermons along with the dates. Since we know he was murdered March 24, 1980, we can read into these gems of insight, humility and love as he grows and is increasingly aware that he is next on the hit list. Nonetheless, none the less, he continues to preach and invite us all to a ...more
Dec 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: faith, to-think-on
I really encourage anyone who has heard of Oscar Romero to read his work - this is a great little collection. Prior to reading this, I had heard a lot about Romero, some good but most pretty negative. After reading these selections, I have a better grasp not only of what he preached, but of what he himself believed. Really great stuff - Im inspired to see about finding recordings of some of his teaching to listen to a complete presentation! ...more
Kirsten Kinnell
Oct 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Five stars for Romero, two for the format of the book. I would like to read the full text of Romero's homilies and pastoral letters, from which these excerpts are taken. I have the feeling that the editor took out too many particulars in the effort to make Romero's words more universal, but in doing so divorced the statements from their arguments. In any case, a good introduction to Romero's thought.
Sep 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
I knew the story of Oscar Romero before reading this small book. But I had not read his words. This book pulls together excerpts from homilies as well as diary entries from the last 3 years of his life. The diary shows what a shepherd he was, with the smell of the sheep as Pope Francis suggests. The homilies show how rooted in the Gospel he was. ...more
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
(I received a free advance copy from Net Gallery in exchange for an honest review.)

An absolutely gorgeous collection of Oscar Romeos speeches. Lots of insightful and profound theology I absolutely enjoyed reading.
Jill  M Caldwell
Jan 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Oscar Romero, now a saint, was brave, courageous and dedicated to his work. This book summarizes his story using accounts of life from others, his diaries and his homilies. Beautiful!
Joe Hodes
Oct 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Moving and challenging writings of St. Oscar Romero.
Mar 05, 2019 rated it it was ok
Not what I expected. Was looking more for biographical material about this latest Saint.
Andy Millman
Jan 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Great little book from one of my favorite liberationists. As timely now as when it was written.
Jun 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Inspiring and thought provoking.
J. Scott
Lately, I've become increasingly engrossed with the life and legacy of Óscar Romero (1917-1980), the martyred Archbishop of San Salvador soon to be beatified by the Roman Catholic Church. I am finding this material both inspiring and challenging, and am moved to ponder what this recognition means for the history of Christianity in the Americas -- indeed, for the Christian churches worldwide. In that vein, I've been ruminating on a short volume of excerpts from Romero's diary entries and ...more
rated it it was amazing
Dec 14, 2018
Brigid Hogan
rated it really liked it
Aug 29, 2020
rated it it was ok
Sep 24, 2018
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