The Second Calling, by Hans S. Reinders
On the edge of a village near Seville, southern Spain, at the end of a dusty road running through fields of sunflowers and olive trees, is a house which is home to a community of people. The residents of the House of Bethany work together, eat together, laugh together and cry together, celebrating the life that God has given them. Every member of the community is unique, yet each has come to the house for a reason… even if they do not yet know what that reason is.
The House of Bethany is a place in which people discover their second calling: a purpose so surprising, so far beyond expectation, that it can only be learned from each other. The Second Calling is a novel inspired by the life and work of Jean Vanier (recipient of the Templeton Prize in 2015) and the ministry of L’Arche, a worldwide network of communities in which people with and without intellectual disabilities live together. It was written by Hans S. Reinders, Professor of Ethics at the Free University of Amsterdam, and President of the European Society for the Study of Theology and Disability, after Jean invited him to write a book to introduce the work of L’Arche to a wider audience.