Famed author and pastor Eugene Peterson has entered hospice care. In a message from his son Eric on Facebook, he explained that his 85-year-old father “ took a sudden and dramatic turn in his health caused by an infection …  the two main medical issues he is facing—heart failure and dementia—are advanced and progressing.”

He continued, “He will come under the care of hospice and his medical care will be primarily palliative. As of now it looks like it will be 1-3 more days before he returns home, depending on when all the support systems are in place … I told him there were three main things for him to know. 1. You are deeply loved. 2. It appears that you are in the last months of your life. (And when I asked him how he felt about that, after some thought, he said, ‘I feel good about that.’) 3. We are going to try to help make these remaining months as comfortable and enjoyable for you as possible.”

Peterson is perhaps best known for The Message, a unique version of the Bible that is written in contemporary language. Peterson has authored dozens of other popular books on faith and theology, and until his retirement in 2006, was one of the most recognized Bible scholars in America. He also founded Maryland’s  Christ Our King Presbyterian Church where he served as pastor for nearly 30 years.