This is a Soul: The Mis­sion of Rick Hodes

  • Review
By – September 19, 2011

Some­times chance encoun­ters have the abil­i­ty to trans­form our lives. One such occur­rence for­ev­er altered the life of Mar­i­lyn Berg­er. Orig­i­nal­ly in Africa to write about Dr. Rick Hodes, This Is a Soul is her sto­ry about how her life is for­ev­er changed as it becomes inter­twined with the poor­est chil­dren of this continent. 

Hodes has been in Ethiopia for 20 years, min­is­ter­ing to the sick­est, most vul­ner­a­ble chil­dren on earth. Orig­i­nal­ly drawn to Africa from sub­ur­ban New York because of the famine, he even­tu­al­ly made it to Rwan­da and then Ethiopia. He found his true call­ing, car­ing for chil­dren, at Moth­er Teresa’s mis­sion. His life is about what Yehu­dah haNasi describes as the prop­er path that a per­son should choose, per­form­ing both minor” and major” mitzvot and seek­ing no finan­cial reward. His approach to med­ical care is often lost in west­ern soci­ety, as he tends to the soul as well as the flesh. Berg­er describes his sto­ry with warmth and human­i­ty. Hodes’s life serves as an inspi­ra­tion to physi­cians and lay­men alike, and the read­er will find this vol­ume an uplift­ing experience.

Paul M. Arnold, MD, is pro­fes­sor of neu­ro­surgery and direc­tor of the Spinal Cord Injury Cen­ter at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Kansas.

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