Wayne-Daniel Berard, Ph.D. is Professor of English, Director of Spiritual Life and Chaplain of Nichols College, Dudley, MA. He is a Peace Chaplain, an interfaith clergyperson commissioned by the Peace Abbey, Sherborn, MA. Raised in Taunton, MA, Wayne-Daniel spent five years in Franciscan seminary. An adopted child, his discovery as an adult of his Jewish birth-parentage led to years of on-going Torah study with Rabbi Alan Ullman’s School for Judaic Studies, Newton, MA. He is a published poet and essayist, his chapbook The Man Who Remembered Heaven having received the 2003 chapbook award from the journal Ruah. His first full-length book When Christians Were Jews (That Is, Now), subtitled, Recovering the Lost Jewishness of Christianity with St. Mark’s Gospel, was published in 2006 by Cowley Publishing. Wayne-Daniel is the co-founder and co-editor of Soul-Lit, a journal of spiritual poetry. He is a member of B’nai Or, a Jewish Renewal Community in Newton, MA, and of the Emmaus Community in Bridgewater, MA. Wayne-Daniel resides in Mansfield, MA with his wife, The Lovely Christine; their shared families include six children, numerous cats, a rescued black shepherd and very spoiled dachshund.
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The Retreatants tells the story of nine people on a silent retreat called “Experiencing Christ” at a retreat house identified only as The Center. Each of the nine retreatants feels that she or he has “lost God” in some way. Their twenty-one-day retreat is led, surprisingly, by a Jew known only as Abramovich . . .
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