There’s nothing more likely to concentrate one’s mind on survival than to be in a disabled transport aircraft, almost out of fuel, the cabin depressurised and the landing gear stuck. Especially when it happens at 80˚South above a vast, chill white desert that is Antarctica.Such an experience focused the author’s mind on those life and death events from which some people walk away unscathed, while for others an unforgiving Antarctic is their tomb.In Antarctica, as Father Michael Smith SJ reflects for the author, it is not hard to see God at work in the beauty of creation – in the mountain ranges, in the ice sheet, in the limitless blue sky, in the vastness of the continent, in the seals, in the penguins. Hundreds, if not thousands of people visit Antarctica each year in pursuit of science, exploration or carrying a tourist ticket. To their homes they return safely bearing memories of an awesome white continent. Life and Death in Antarctica is the other side of that story – a gripping account of people since the days of the earliest explorers, who have had to summon their faith in a moment when survival hung in the balance.
The South Pole and the Spirit
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