Reviews and Comments

“To pull life from death is a great calling upon the Christian community.

Peter Roebbelen’s book, Mercy, does this honestly, beautifully, and with a compelling awareness that can only come from a hand that has held many in the journey towards death.

I read Peter’s book while holding the hand of my sleeping mother who is in her own season of dying. Having been absent, in a variety of ways, in the death of my father, I am now deeply grateful for a book that calls us (and shows us the way) to presence and life in the season of dying.  I have left the reading of Peter’s book with an old adage impressed upon my thoughts – “death kills a person but the thought of death saves them.”

Greg Pennoyer

Editor: God With Us: Rediscovering the Meaning of Christmas


“In this sacred journal, Peter vulnerably shares ‘riches stored in secret places’—intimate and holy moments with the dying, illuminating the promise of Psalm 116:15: ‘His loved ones are very precious to him, and he does not lightly let them die.’”

Moira Brown

Author, and former host of 100 Huntley Street



“An open, thoughtful discussion not just about death but the journey of life as we face the inevitability of death.

Peter says it well “God showed me my dying friends were never more alive than in their season of dying.” This book is a call to live well so that dying well is possible. Most of all, it is an intimate insight to a pastor’s heart. A pastor who walked openly with people he loved and cared about as they entered the mystery of dying. This is essential reading for anyone entering into the debates of a society fearful of death.”

Gary V Nelson

President, Tyndale University College & Seminary



“Wow! I’m just through Mercy – and was both wonderfully blessed and helpfully messed up by it.

The intimacy of the stories made it feel like I was by your side, there’s a very easy flow to your writing, and I came away with powerful insights to reflect on in both life and dying. I cringed with angst, cried in sadness, smiled at beauty and even laughed a couple times during my read – all . Thank you for your faithful, prayerful and hard work Peter – in pastoring, living and writing this book. Thank you for being vulnerable in sharing yourself in the book too.

Dr. Steve A. Brown

President, Arrow Leadership and Author of Leading Me – Eight Practices for a Christian Leader’s Most Important Leadership Assignment


“Accompanying dying people is both the most privileged part of pastoral ministry and also the hardest.

This book’s heartening testimonies demonstrate paradoxical gifts and blessings from the end of life. Discover how a dedicated pastor overcame fear of working with the dying and became an agent of God’s healing and hope in the most dire circumstances.”

Rev. Arthur Boers

Anglican priest and author of Living into Focus: Choosing What Matters in an Age of Distractions



“ So often in the presence of death the Christian response is to pray for healing so life will continue.

Turning that notion on its head, this book demonstrates that life and healing can actually be part of death both for those who are approaching the end of life on earth as well as for those who are walking with them. But what is both disarming and helpful is that the author actually gives us a vulnerable glimpse into his own inner discovery around this complex subject and in the process invites us as readers to confront our own journey as we move toward death.”

Dr. Rod Wilson

Former President of Regent College
Senior Advisor, A Rocha Canada


“How do you help someone to die? Or those left behind? Realizing he had come up against his own limits as a pastor, Peter Roebbelen turns to the experience of those he has seen over the threshold. In their responses, he discovers what he calls the gifts of dying—which, when attended to, can transform the very way we live. Here is an honest account of a believer living at the edge of what we can understand in facing our own shared mortality.”

Jerusha McCormack

Author, Grieving, A Beginner’s Guide



“Facing death is always a challenging and difficult experience.

Peter Roebbelen has done us a service by showing that this journey can have redemptive value and that in the face of death we can experience life.  A helpful book for both the caregivers and those needing care.”

Dr. Roy Matheson

Professor Emeritus
Tyndale Seminary


“Although arguably the most important topic for us all, dying is never easy to discuss. Breathing life into personal stories of death is a wonderful way to engage others in dialogue. In Mercy, Roebbelen does just that, and with the imagery of acknowledging death’s reality—not with our hands up in human submission, but instead with our ‘palms up’ in Christian surrender.”

Megory Anderson, PhD

Author of Sacred Dying Journal: Reflections on Embracing the End of Life