It’s not unusual for Livonia priest Father George Shalhoub to receive questions regarding love or marriage. After all, he weds dozens of couples each year. He’s also one of Metro Detroit’s most highly qualified marriage counselors, offering valuable spiritual advice to the hundreds of families he serves.
As an associate professor at Madonna University, Father Shalhoub has taught marriage and family for over 25 years. As if those impressive credentials aren’t enough, Father Shalhoub has been happily married to his wonderful wife for 43 years.
When I met Father at his church office last week, his smile beamed from ear to ear. He was affectionate and tender – an incredibly easy person to talk to.
“How are you, Son?” he asked, as I walked into his office.
“I’m alright. Nice seeing you, Father. It’s been a while,” I replied, taking a seat near his desk. Hundreds of photographs filled the room.
“This place is like a museum,” I said.
“This is my museum. I love this,” he replied.
It was the people in these photos that meant the world to him. In an interview with the television program, Arab American Stories, Father Shalhoub expressed his love for the people he serves.
“If you love something, you’re willing to die for it and I love this community so much that I did not spare anything,” he told PBS.
These features are only minor ingredients to the success of the Basilica of Saint Mary in Livonia, Michigan. As the founding pastor, Father Shalhoub and his parishioners built and maintained one of Metro Detroit’s largest Orthodox churches.
After constantly receiving questions about love and marriage from his beloved parishioners, Father Shalhoub decided to put his inspirational message into writing. A few months and 228-pages later, The Mystery of Love and Marriage was born.
“The book is a roadmap for anyone looking to be in a relationship,” he said. “The Mystery of Love and Marriage exposes the truths to communication, forgiveness and unconditional love, all the scariest and most important pieces of being in a partnership.”
The book chronicles the collected wisdom, insight, and personal stories of Father Shalhoub. When I asked what captivated him to write the book, he smiled.
“This book is not an illusion or quick fix. It is about health living. It is an honest reflection of men and women who wish to live a balanced – happy, and above all, a healthy life whether in family, relationships, or marriage,” he began. “When we recall who we are, God’s miracle made in His image and likeness, we find and discover the mystery of love in our daily life.”
To purchase a copy, visit http://stmarypress.com/.