|About the Book|
The disheveled beggar approached Jo Anna Ford shortly after she exited the Church of St. Francis of Assisi in Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico. He had a simple request: Fifty cents for the bus that would take him to a free meal at the Community Center. JoMoreThe disheveled beggar approached Jo Anna Ford shortly after she exited the Church of St. Francis of Assisi in Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico. He had a simple request: Fifty cents for the bus that would take him to a free meal at the Community Center. Jo Anna carried no purse during her evening walks- she apologized for having no money with her. Then, would you just talk with me for a moment? he asked. We could sit on that stone wall and just chat a bit. It seemed to be a simple request, and Jo Anna agreed to sit with him for just a few minutes. Within a few seconds she was listening to a story of hardship, loss, loneliness, and despair. As he finished the brief chronicle of his life, he revealed his most painful secret. He had been diagnosed as schizophrenic with messianic ideation and locked away in a mental institution for years. With a determined gaze and a soft smile, he assured Jo Anna that he was not insane. She began to doubt her own sanity when she realized she actually believed him - not that he was the Messiah, but that he was not insane. That strange encounter rekindled her interest in the historical Jesus. It was the beginning of a journey that would lead her to the philosophers and historians of Jesus time: Philo of Alexandria, Josephus, Tacitus, Seutonius, Pliny, and others. She found the epic poems of Ovid, and Homer, and Euripides. The puzzle pieces each of these ancient sources held eventually led her to a most startling realization. Someone would have to rewrite The History of the Roman Empire to include the amazing feats of the man and woman who played the roles of Jesus the Nazarene and Mary Magdalene. And as far as she knew, she was the only person who had been able to uncover their secret historical identities.