NEW RELEASE: Sonnets From the Spirit (Kindle edition)

Sonnets from the Spirit FRONT COVERHope and Life Press is pleased to announce the release of the Kindle edition of the book Sonnets From the Spirit, written by the award-winning British Catholic theologian and poet Christopher Villiers. The paperback edition of the book was released by Hope and Life Press last month.

Sonnets From the Spirit is a collection of 52 icons in poetry on major episodes from Sacred Scripture, written according to the ancient practice of midrash. The themes of the sonnets are illustrated by great works of sacred art. This book is intended to provide readers with a little feel for God working through, and sometimes despite, very human people whose strengths and weaknesses greatly resembled those of 21st century humankind. Sonnets From the Spirit is also available in paperback and ebook editions directly from Hope and Life Press, Amazon globally, and other major booksellers.

Early Reviews

“The poems of Villiers continue the ancient practice of midrash, the breaking open of Scripture texts, by entering into the voices of its characters and illuminating new facets of the stories. As such they offer worthy meditations to accompany our sacred reading, inviting us to consider our own lived responses” – Christine Valters Paintner, Ph.D., online Abbess at Abbey of the Arts, Pantheos contributor, and author of eight books on monastic spirituality and creativity.

“In this series of sonnets, Villiers takes us from the birth of Eve to the Assumption of the Virgin, the Second Eve. The sonnets are like icons in poetry, each poem a meditation seeking to take us through the biblical text into the mystery of God” –Archpriest Andrew Louth, FBA, Professor Emeritus of Patristic and Byzantine Studies, Durham University.

“A new voice in poetry that helps us to find fresh insights into some of the classic passages of Holy Scripture, stimulating reflection and prayer” – Reverend Paul Richardson, Assistant Bishop (ret.) of Newcastle and Reviews Editor of the Church of England Newspaper.

“In Sonnets from the Spirit, the talented poet and theologian Christopher Villiers conveys Bible stories in verse. These rhythmic sonnets do not just tell a story. As you read, you become the central character of each poem, entering the viewpoint of Bible people and the events they encountered then, coming away with an ‘I’ ready to perceive and receive an ongoing relationship with God” – Mary Harwell Sayler, Christian poet and writer.

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NEW RELEASE: Sonnets From the Spirit (Kindle edition)

From the Heart – A Journey of Love #4 Bestseller in Middle Eastern Poetry

FROMTHEHEARTFrom the Heart – A Journey of Love by the Jordanian-American author and HuffPo Passionista Hadel S. Ma’ayeh (Hope & Life Press, 2014) is now the #4 Bestseller in Middle Eastern Poetry books in Canada. From the Heart is available from major booksellers worldwide in paperback and ebook editions.

From the Heart – A Journey of Love #4 Bestseller in Middle Eastern Poetry

Juha Roisko interviewed at Orthodox Christian Network

3979301Juha Roisko, our Finnish author-photographer of the book Life (Hope & Life Press, 2014) and trustee of Uspenski Cathedral in Finland, has just been interviewed by Chris Vlahonasios at the Orthodox Christian Network (OCN). The interview was titled An Orthodox Photographer and Therapist, and it was featured as part of OCN’s series The Moving Icon. You can read more about the interview and listen to Juha speak about his work here.

Juha Roisko interviewed at Orthodox Christian Network

From the Heart – A Journey of Love called “great recommendation”

FROMTHEHEARTHadel Ma’ayeh’s book of poems, haikus and sayings From the Heart – A Journey of Love (Hope & Life Press, 2014) has just been selected by Austin Roarers™ as a “great recommendation” for readers on Goodreads. Powers said that Ma’ayeh’s book was “one of the most fantastic works I have had the honor to read, rate and review.” From the Heart – A Journey of Love can be obtained in paperback and ebook editions directly from ourselves, Amazon globally, and major booksellers.

From the Heart – A Journey of Love called “great recommendation”

NEW RELEASE – Approaching the Divine: A Primer for Iconography by Fr. Richard G. Cannuli, OSA

APPROACHING THE DIVINE FRONT COVER revWe are pleased to announce the release for the Christmas season of the book Approaching the Divine – A Primer for Iconography, a collection of original icons – transfigurations of beauty and windows to heaven – by the hand of world-renowned American iconographer and Villanova University professor of art, the Reverend Richard G. Cannuli, O.S.A. Displaying icons of Christ, the Eternal Father, the Virgin Mary, angels and archangels, festal icons and icons of various saints in more than 100 full color pictures, Cannuli masterfully straddles and unites into one the artistic and spiritual divide between the Western Church and the Eastern Church by writing Catholic icons in the Russian-Byzantine tradition as a bi-ritual priest. Cannuli’s icons can be found in several churches and collections, and in the possession of many individuals around the globe including His Holiness, Pope Francis; the Maronite Primate, Patriarch Nasrallah Peter Sfeir and in the famous icon collection of Saint Catherine at Mount Sinai, Egypt. Approaching the Divine – A Primer for Iconography is available in hardback, paperback and ebook editions directly from Hope and Life Press, at Amazon globally and other booksellers.

Early Reviews

“The artworks project is a rare essence of mysticism . . . helping the artist connect with his audience while urging them to connect with each other, as they seek to respect the spirit of mystery and life” – Burton Wasserman, Emeritus Professor of Art and Art Critic, Rowan University.

“Cannuli has offered a great gift to those who know his work. I recently had the privilege of presenting Father Richard’s icon of Saint Augustine to His Holiness, Pope Francis, who was visibly moved and deeply appreciative as he held it in his hands. The spirituality of Saint Augustine, of which interiority is a pillar, is beautifully represented by all that Father Richard communicates through his art: God is truly present in our midst” – Bishop Robert F. Prevost, Titular Bishop of Sufar and Former Prior General of the Order of Saint Augustine.

“Cannuli is among the foremost iconographers today. His icons, teaching of future iconographers and deep sense of the history and power of icons in evoking spiritual devotion are qualities that have endeared him to a whole generation of people. Approaching the Divine brings together decades of his work for those looking for spiritual sustenance and a personal path to union with the divine” – Carol Ludwig, Executive Director, The Center for Spiritual Care.

“Cannuli’s book Approaching the Divine gives the viewer insight into faith and hope by using imagery and color to explain the abundant graces and mercies of the God of the universe to a world greatly in need” – Archpriest John Perich, Saint Herman of Alaska Orthodox Church.

About the Author

Villanova University Annual Report Photography

Fr. Richard G. Cannuli, O.S.A., obtained the Bachelor of Fine Arts from Villanova University, Pennsylvania in 1973 and the Master of Fine Arts from the Platt Institute in Brooklyn, New York in 1978. He studied iconography under the Russian master-iconographer Vladislav Andrejev and watercolor in Siena, Italy. Cannuli joined the faculty at Villanova University, teaching courses on transparent watercolor, printmaking, oil painting, figure drawing, fabric and iconography. Cannuli is the founder and director of the art gallery of the university and curator of its art collection.

Cannuli was appointed full professor of fine arts in 2000. He chaired the Department of Studio Art, History of Art and Music at Villanova University for 11 years and the Department of Theatre, Studio Art and Music for five years. Besides being a noted iconographer, Cannuli is also a master watercolorist and world-renowned designer of liturgical vestments. He designs and works with stained glass windows, mosaic, fabric and liturgical furniture. Certified in liturgical design by the Chicago Theological Union, Cannuli has consulted for numerous communities on the construction of choir and chapel spaces in Italy and the US.

Cannuli has presented exhibits of his icons in Austria, Czech Republic, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Poland, South Africa and the US. He has also presented watercolor exhibits in Belarus, China, Greece, Italy, Russia, Spain and the US. Cannuli has organized, curated and judged various art exhibitions and consulted on determining the symbolism of antique icons together with specialists from Belarus and Russia. Cannuli regularly conducts iconography workshops in the Czech Republic, England, Italy, Poland and the US.

Icons of Cannuli have been commissioned by several parish communities and private individuals in Europe and the US. Some major commissions he has written can be found at the chapel of the law school of Villanova University in Pennsylvania, the churches of Divine Mercy and Saint Francis Xavier in Philadelphia, the convent of Saint Augustine in San Gimigniano, Italy, and the monastery of the Holy Name of Jesus in Denmark, Wisconsin.

Cannuli’s icon titled Do Not Weep For Me, Mother has been presented on behalf of Villanova University to the Primate of the Maronite Church, His Eminence, Patriarch Nasrallah Peter Sfeir, whereas his latest icon of Saint Augustine has been presented to His Holiness, Pope Francis on the occasion of the opening of the General Chapter of the Order of Saint Augustine. Cannuli’s icon titled The Holy Face Made Without Hands has been accepted into the permanent collection of the Holy Monastery of Saint Catherine at Mount Sinai, Egypt – a collection considered to portray the best early icons worldwide.

NEW RELEASE – Approaching the Divine: A Primer for Iconography by Fr. Richard G. Cannuli, OSA

NEW RELEASE – Life by Juha Roisko

LIFE FRONT COVERWe are pleased to announce the release for the Christmas season of the book Life by Finnish photographer and family therapist, Juha Roisko. Life is a collection of pictures which portray the various layers of life and experiences it provides. Displaying the postmodern city, the departure, the bridge, the country, the hard winter, the respite and the return in 100 full color photographs described as surreal moments suspended in time, Roisko subtly guides the viewer through common, daily scenes to multiple layers of mystery and beyond, touching upon the very essence of human life. Beauty, joy, hope, sorrow, sadness, curiosity and longing are captured in a sophisticated way, making this collection valuable for the healing of humankind and the survivors of abuse and cruelty. Life is available in hardback, paperback and ebook editions directly from Hope and Life Press, at Amazon globally and other booksellers.

Early Reviews

“In Roisko’s images, the Kodak moments are not so much frozen as suspended in time. His keenly observed scenes appear to hang in a space of their own as they prepare to embark on an internal journey of new meaning” – Barry Downard, Photo Illustrator, South Africa.

“The first image I saw from Roisko, its message, the power of the subject and surrealistic way it was captured, really left me astonished . . . Roisko can capture those imperceptible moments and turn them into truly subtle, surreal photographs that will make you stare and wonder at them for ages” – Raul Bermudez, Concept Artist, Mexico.

“Roisko’s photographs are rich in color with subtle tones. Everyday scenes are seen with a fresh eye” – Marcel Roggisch, Photographer, The Netherlands.

“Humanity, dignity, life’s little but meaningful details and nature meet each other in this very special book. Roisko’s stunning talent of capturing the passing moments of life arises from his strong musical and observing way of seeing life as artwork” – Kari Laakso, Musician, Finland.

About Juha Roisko

3979301Juha Roisko was born to a family of humble origin, early settlers of Finnish-Russian descent in the historical province of Karelia, Finland. He is a family therapist in clinical practice for 12 years. Roisko has lived most of his life as a witness to people’s tragic life experiences, a witnessing that has influenced his passion to help families, particularly children, to healing and recovery through psychotherapy.

Roisko is a man without prejudice, at peace with the world and with himself. He retains a very close, personal relationship with the Orthodox Church. Some photographs in this book were, in fact, taken inside Uspenski Cathedral in Helsinki, Finland, the largest Orthodox Church in Western Europe and of which Roisko is the trustee.

Roisko is a self-taught artist in photography whose work has been greatly praised by others. Some of his photographs were originally designed to be a tool for therapeutic healing. His photographs radiate a sense of well-being to viewers, one that calms the mind and allows people to appreciate and take in within themselves true beauty at first lens capture.

NEW RELEASE – Life by Juha Roisko

Traditional iconography by Fr Richard Cannuli – Video

Video

Hadel S. Ma’ayeh featured in Chicago’s Mundelein Review

Hadel GOODHadel S. Ma’ayeh, our Huffington Post Passionista and Jordanian-American author of the book of poetry, haikus and sayings From the Heart – A Journey of Love, has been featured in the Mundelein ReviewFrom the Heart made Amazon’s list of Hot Releases in Middle Eastern Literature. It was released in paperback and ebook editions by Hope and Life in October 2014.

Hadel S. Ma’ayeh featured in Chicago’s Mundelein Review

Juha Roisko featured in Britain’s “The Guardian”

3979301Two photographs titled Lake Mirror and Serenity respectively by our Finnish author Juha Roisko have just been featured in The Guardian – Witness. Taken on November 22, Lake Mirror shows the “mirror-effect reflection of trees on the partially frozen lake” in Luukki, Finland. Serenity shows a “serene moment on a shore, lovely small lake just 20 kilometers from Helsinki.”

Roisko is the photographic author of Life, a book of 100 stunning, color photographs dedicated to the victims and survivors of abuse and cruelty. Life will be released to the general public on December 1, 2014, in hardback, paperback and ebook editions by Hope and Life Press. Roisko is the trustee of Uspenski Cathedral in Finland, the largest Orthodox church in Western Europe.

Juha Roisko featured in Britain’s “The Guardian”

Forthcoming in 2015 – Divine Light

RICHARD CANNULIWe are pleased to announce that in the first quarter of 2015, we will be releasing a large, full color book of stained glass windows titled Divine Light which were designed by the hand of Villanova University professor of studio art, Fr. Richard G. Cannuli, O.S.A. Fr. Cannuli is a world-renowned iconographer and the author of Approaching the Divine – A Primer for Iconography which is released by Hope and Life Press on December 1, 2014, in hardback, paperback and ebook editions. Fr. Cannuli is also a master watercolorist and designer of liturgical vestments.

Forthcoming in 2015 – Divine Light