“TOO OFTEN WE POSTPONE LIFE, AS IF THERE WERE NO DEADLINE.” Chris Glaser offers a new expression of his embodied, here-and-now, spirituality—his twelfth book, The Final Deadline: What Death Has Taught Me About Life, released by Morehouse Publishing (New York) in September, 2010.
As a writer, Chris Glaser experiences deadlines as friendly reminders that something has to be accomplished by a given time. He views death as the final deadline, one that insists we “get it” or “get it done” – whatever “it is” – during our lifetimes.
Glaser depicts Death as an inscrutable Zen master ready to teach us, a spiritual director eager to inspire us, a soul-friend reminding us that our life spans have sacred worth. Movingly, he recounts the deaths that have shaped his soul, opening readers’ hearts to their own discoveries facing The Final Deadline.
“In an accessible, thoughtful, and often entertaining way, theologian and spiritual leader Glaser (Come Home! Reclaiming Spirituality and Community as Gay Men and Lesbians) explicates his personal experiences with death. Gleaning wisdom from his several callings–as a gay Christian minister, activist, and caregiver during the AIDS crisis, and, most significantly, as a writer–Glaser examines death’s harsh realities and suggests the benefit of viewing death as a “kindly if awesome teacher about what is vital, important, and ultimate.” With compassionate introspection as well as a touch of gallows humor, Glaser unpacks his own reactions to deaths he personally experienced: his grandmother’s, from illness; accidental deaths of classmates; public deaths (such as JFK’s); murders; suicides; AIDS deaths; even a beloved pet’s death and a relationship’s end. By sharing personal stories of his gratitude at being present for a loved one’s final breath, his shock at learning of a colleague’s murder, and his regret at an estranged friend’s unexpected death, Glaser provides an honest and hopeful witness to death’s lessons for the living. (Sept.)”
– Publishers Weekly
“In The Final Deadline we meet a man of God searching the meaning of death for his own life. By his compassionate accompaniment of friends and relatives approaching death, Chris Glaser has received unique gifts from each one. I found myself in the privileged company of a friend and master, sharing his kind spirit, his deep wisdom, and his compassionate heart. His message deserves to be widely read and deeply contemplated.”
—Sue Mosteller, C.S.J., Henri Nouwen Legacy Trust
“Most of human history has lived very close to death, and initiation rites forced it into our awareness. Now we need wise teachers like Chris to invite us into this cosmic dance. He will help you to know that death is not primarily a medical event, but a spiritual one!”
— Fr. Richard Rohr, O.F.M., Center for Action and Contemplation, Albuquerque, New Mexico
“Chris Glaser, with the heart of a pastor, the sensitivity of a therapist and the insight of a theologian, confronts the power of death in all its forms. He engages it, learns from it, wrestles with it, and ultimately transforms its sting into a stimulus for a renewed commitment to living. It is a touching and gracious book.”
—John Shelby Spong, author of Eternal Life: A New Vision, Beyond Religion, Beyond Theism, and Beyond Heaven and Hell
“Spirited mastery in making sense of the losses and grief’s shaping our journey! Chris Glaser offers wisdom for discovering new life in the deaths and resurrections we experience, inviting transformation into becoming even more fully alive. This book will become a must-read for study groups and individuals.”
—Robert V. Taylor, speaker, author, and Chair of the Desmond Tutu Peace Foundation
“Chris Glaser has squarely faced the deadline that most of us seek to avoid. In an honest, helpful style he has faced the painful and inexplicable ways of death. This book is written for persons who desire to face honestly their final transition.”
— Ben Campbell Johnson, cofounder of the Spiritual Formation Program at Columbia Theological Seminary and author of Confessing a Life: A Spiritual Odyssey
“In his inimitable style that warmly embraces storytelling, Chris Glaser reveals our multifaceted experiences of death. Best of all, he includes his own vulnerable role as a seeker.”
— Malcolm Boyd, writer-in-residence of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles and author of Are You Running with Me, Jesus?
Morehouse Publishing, 2010