Courage for Caregivers: Sustenance for the Journey in Company with Henri J. M. Nouwen

Reviewed by:

Julie-Allyson Ieron, author/Bible teacher/worship minister



Courage for Caregivers: Sustenance for the Journey in Company with Henri J. M. Nouwen


Marjorie J. Thompson


Intervarsity Press

http://InterVarsity Press

Publication Date:

August 2022


Print book, pb.


176 pp.


In my experience, caregiving is a journey with little time or spare energy to expend on such high-level intellectual pursuits as contemplation. Processing the experience comes later, when the journey is less intense and the fatigue level has decreased.

However, this new book by ordained Presbyterian minister Marjorie J. Thompson, uses classic wisdom from the late Dutch priest and theologian Henri. J. M. Nouwen to bring spiritual sustenance to the caregiver in the center of the journey. Thompson interweaves Nouwen’s published insights with modern-day stories to create an enlightening masterpiece of spiritual truth. Yes, the journey has innate value. Yes, the care receiver has much to offer despite personal limitations. Yes, God uses these seasons of life to craft and mold givers and receivers into Christ’s likeness. The content is strong and uplifting, and Thompson’s writing style is more engaging than the typical contemplative publication.

The project also includes several added-value items, the longest of which is an extensive retreat plan and leader guide. I most appreciated the engaging stories shared by individual caregivers, especially those in the section labeled “Treasury of Stories.” Also valuable are the resource lists (though, as I know from more than a decade of publishing on the caregiving journey) these are challenging to keep up to date.


Rating (1 to 5):


Suggested Audience:

Caregivers and those who would like to lighten their loads.

Christian Impact:

The substance and content are supremely Christian, reminding caregivers and care receivers of their innate value in Christ and of the value of this particular stage of their lives.

Other Notes:

While the content is superb, I am skeptical of how well it will reach its intended audience. For those on the overwhelming, exhausting caregiving journey, retreats and contemplative reads are luxuries that may not be practical for that season of life when the material would be most helpful.

Courage for Caregivers: Sustenance for the Journey in Company with Henri J. M. Nouwen

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