Ulf and Birgitta Ekman are no strangers to controversy. As a Lutheran priest at Uppsala University in the 1980s, Ulf was a leader of a student revival that resulted in his very public separation from the Church of Sweden. With his wife, Birgitta, he founded Word of Life, a large Pentecostal church that attracted thousands of members and planted churches and Bible schools around the world. Word of Life became the first “mega-church” in the country, and Ulf Ekman became Sweden’s most prominent Christian leader.
Being well-known Christian leaders in one of the world’s most secular countries brings many challenges. The Ekmans were constantly in the crosshairs of the media, who were critical of what they dubbed a “prosperity gospel”. But the biggest criticisms would come from within the Christian church when the Ekmans answered the persistent call to join the Catholic Church. The news of their leaving Word of Life Church to become Catholics was a bombshell in Sweden.
In The Great Discovery the Ekmans tell the amazing, inspirational story of their road to Rome, from their own intense opposition to Catholicism to meeting with Pope Francis. The result is an instant classic of Christian autobiography.
“An unforgettable tale. A story commingled with theology, a journey of honest questions, enduring love, dissatisfaction, and—finally—sweet resolution.”
— Tyler Blanski, Author, An Immovable Feast: How I Gave Up Spirituality for a Life of Religious Abundance
“Ulf and Birgitta Ekman spent decades as evangelists. Ulf was known as ‘Sweden’s Billy Graham’. This book is their amazing story. You don’t have to be Catholic to love it. If you’re human, it will move you.”
— Scott Hahn, Ph.D., Author, Rome Sweet Home
“The Ekmans’ journey is fascinating, enjoyable, inspiring, and convincing. To hear their enthusiasm for the Catholic faith is to rediscover the joy of this blessed Church, which so many of us too often take for granted.”
— Marcus Grodi, EWTN TV Host, The Journey Home
“The Ekmans found their way into the Church through a lifetime of repeated encounters with devout Catholics, the ineluctable presence of Christ in the Eucharist, a holy desire for Christian unity . . . and even intense personal suffering. This book will remind you that your everyday Catholic life can change the world through its effect upon others you encounter.”
— David Currie, Author, Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic
“Reading this book is akin to listening to husband and wife at a kitchen table, and they are truly humbling and charming company. Their resolve to convert to Catholicism is a staggering testimony to quiet courage in Christ.”
— Sally Read, Author, Night’s Bright Darkness
“The Great Discovery shows the challenge of searching for truth and the joy of its discovery. I am convinced that this book will encourage many people in their search for the truth about God.”
— Most Reverend Tomash Peta, Metropolitan Archbishop of Astana, Kazakhstan
“A fascinating and extremely well-written account of a spiritual journey. This challenging explanation of the Ekmans’ intellectual, emotional, and Spirit-inspired experiences, some of which I saw firsthand, makes inspirational reading.”
— Charles Whitehead, Chairman, International Charismatic Consultation