John Neafsey is staff psychologist at the Heartland Alliance Marjorie Kovler Center in Chicago, a treatment center for survivors of torture. He is the author of A Sacred Voice is Calling: Personal Vocation and Social Conscience, which won two Catholic Press Association Book Awards and was one of S&P's choices for a Best Spiritual Book of 2006.

About his work with survivors of torture, he speaks of those who light a candle in remembrance of others who have been humiliated and tortured:

"This ritual is a way of bringing light to dark places we would rather forget, a practice of 'dangerous memory,' of sending solidarity on the wings of prayer to people under torment by other human beings. It is a way of affirming that human beings are sacred and of reminding ourselves that they should be treated as such."

Jon Sobrino believes that we must learn to "hear the word of reality" which is all the suffering in the world. Whenever we ponder the terrible acts of inhumanity, our reaction is one of compassion and then indignation. We are reminded by theologian Elizabeth Johnson: "Crosses keep on being set up in the world; the cry of abandonment echoes down through the centuries."

Jesus was one of the victims of state terrorism by Imperial Rome. God is always present with those who are tormented. Neafsey takes a long, hard look at the outrages on human dignity perpetrated by Americans at Abu Ghraib and at the Guantanamo Bay prison.

He and his colleagues are doing all they can to work with torture survivors, wounded families, and communities. Recovery from trauma is achieved by the lucky few: there is so much guilt, sorrow, and forgiveness that must be worked through in a slow healing process.

Crucified People is a sobering work on a subject that deserves more thought and prayer!