Carefully selected to lift your soul to God in those hectic days that stretch from Thanksgiving to Christmas, these forty daily meditations will keep you mindful of the real meaning of Christmas while affording you an admirable distillation of the doctrines and piety of our Holy Catholic Church.
With the help of Bishop Bossuet and the sense of God's grandeur and love that permeates his every word all through the rush toward Christmas you'll stay mindful of the holy words of Isaiah foretelling the birth of our savior; you'll find yourself marveling at the Annunciation and the Visitation; you'll rejoice in anticipation of the coming birth of Jesus; and, finally, you ll look forward to kneeling with St. Joseph and the Blessed Virgin in silent adoration of the incarnate Son of God.
This year, you won't (as so often happens) arrive at Midnight Mass distracted, exhausted, and frazzled, having neglected your Advent devotions and your ordinary prayers, too. Instead, you'll find yourself stepping lightly into church, ready and eager to adore the newborn King, your soul what it should be: a fit dwelling place for the Redeemer. Don't waste another Advent! Let Meditations for Advent keep you prayerful amidst the worst distractions of the holiday season. Let it draw you daily closer to Jesus, whose birth the season celebrates, and whose birth your soul yearns to celebrate, too.
Considered by Ratzinger devotees as his greatest work on the Liturgy, this profound and beautifully written treatment of the "great prayer of the Church" will help readers rediscover the Liturgy in all its hidden spiritual wealth and transcendent grandeur as the very center of our Christian life.
In his own foreward to the book, Cardinal Ratzinger compares this work to a much earlier classic of the same title by Romano Guardini because Ratzinger feels that his insights here are similar with what Guardini achieved in his time regarding a renewed understanding of the Liturgy.
"My purpose here is to assist this renewal of understanding of the Liturgy. Its basic intentions coincide with what Guardini wanted to achieve. The only difference is that I have had to translate what Guardini did at the end of the First World War, in a totally different historical situation, into the context of our present-day questions, hopes and dangers. Like Guardini, I am not attempting to involve myself with scholarly discussion and research. I am simply offering an aid to the understanding of the faith and to the right way to give the faith its central form of expression in the Liturgy."
Now translator Christopher Blum has selected from Bishop Bossuet's voluminous works fifty brief but remarkably powerful meditations that complement the daily readings at Mass during the Lenten season, thus offering to us the perfect companion for a thoughtful and fruitful Lent.
If you read and meditate briefly on just one of them each day in Lent, I guarantee that this good French bishop's eloquence will soon have you not merely remembering the events of Christ's journey to His Crucifixion; it will have you spiritually walking with Him on that journey . . . which is precisely what we are called to do in Lent!
With Bossuet, this Lent you will find yourself saying, "O Jesus! I present myself to you to make my journey in your company. O my Savior, receive your traveler! Here I am ready, holding on to nothing. Let me go with You to the Father."
That's the fire that should burn in the heart of all Christians. This Lent, let Bishop Bossuet enkindle it in yours. Among the Meditations:God Alone SufficesPray to God in SecretThe Truth and the LifeTempted in the DesertThe Sign of JonahLove Your EnemiesThis Is My Beloved SonAnd You Will Be ForgivenThe Wicked TenantsIn Spirit and in TruthThe Silence of ChristPriest, Prophet, and KingOur Life, a Journey to GodThe Great CommandmentI Was Hungry and You Fed MeThe Love of God for Repentant SinnersUp to JerusalemGod, the Life of the SoulThe Witness of the BaptistThe Raising of LazarusJesus Is PersecutedThe True MessiahThe AnointingThe BetrayalThe EucharistThe PassionThe Brevity of LifeWashed of Our SinsA Sign of ContradictionNo Man Ever Spoke Like This ManThe Entry of Our Lord into JerusalemTo Unite Ourselves with Christ
You’ll even see why He had to be abandoned by everyone — including His disciples — yet His Father remained close to Him then, just as He remains close to you now. Your new insight into why Jesus chose His own particular paths will illuminate the paths He is choosing for your now — and will help you stay on those paths with gratitude and joy.
Let your newfound knowledge of Jesus blossom into joy as — directed by these pages — you open yourself to the One whose whole being will resound in your heart and will nourish your soul.
"I am totally unaware of a more comprehensive treatment of this subject in any book, including those of mine. It should be read by all worshipers, and should be required study for all who aspire to lead congregational worship."
- Dr. Judson Cornwall, from the foreword
The author brings out the role of Jesus Christ as the essential link in prayer, through whom alone we may know the Father, and he draws copiously on Scripture, throwing us back on what God Himself has said of our approach to Him. Prayer is seen, too, as a response to facts, meaning a grappling with the real world, which is a world created, sustained, and ordered by God. There are chapters on mysticism, on popular prayers, on the liturgy, all of which subjects are treated with new insight and a real understanding of the needs of all levels of spirituality.
Using the texts of the New Testament, Yoder critically examines the traditional portrait of Jesus as an apolitical figure and attempts to clarify the true impact of Jesus' life, work, and teachings on his disciples' social behavior.
The book first surveys the multiple ways the image of an apolitical Jesus has been propagated, then canvasses the Gospel narrative to reveal how Jesus is rightly portrayed as a thinker and leader immediately concerned with the agenda of politics and the related issues of power, status, and right relations. Selected passages from the epistles corroborate a Savior deeply concerned with social, political, and moral issues.
In this thorough revision of his acclaimed 1972 text, Yoder provides updated interaction with publications touching on this subject. Following most of the chapters are new "epilogues" that summarize research conducted during the last two decades -- research that continues to support the insights set forth in Yoder's original work.
Currently a standard in many college and seminary ethics courses, The Politics of Jesus is also an excellent resource for the general reader desiring to understand Christ's response to the world of politics and his will for those who would follow him.
Christ taught us the Lord’s Prayer as the first and most important of all our catechisms. If you haven’t considered it carefully, now’s the time to begin — and here’s the book to help you uncover the riches Christ placed in these familiar words.
Unlock the secrets of the Lord’s Prayer
Msgr. Romano Guardini, acclaimed author of The Rosary of Our Lady and The Art of Praying, here reveals the holy wisdom of these 55 words of Jesus. With Msgr. Guardini’s gentle help, you’ll:
✓ Develop a greater love for the Lord’s Prayer
✓ Come to understand God’s tender care for you
✓ Discover His holy will for you
✓ Learn how to live always in His love, and
✓ Develop the strength to live in conformity with His holy will.
In a word, The Lord’s Prayer will help you to pray better . . . and to live better.
For over fifteen hundred years St. Benedict's Rule has been a source of guidance, support, inspiration, challenge, comfort and discomfort for men and women. It has helped both those living under monastic vows and those living outside the cloister in all the mess and muddle of ordinary, busy lives in the world. Esther de Waal's Seeking God serves as an introduction to this life-giving way and encourages people to discover for themselves the gift that St. Benedict can bring to individuals, to the Church, and to the world, now and in the years to come.
Through this definitive classic Esther de Waal has become known as an authority for the lay person on the Rule of St. Benedict. Her ability to communicate clearly the principal values of the Rule when applied to lay people is the ultimate strength of this book. She follows each chapter with a page or two of thoughts and prayers, contributing to its meditative quality.
Esther de Waal is an Anglican lay woman, married with four sons and a number of grandchildren. She lives on the Welsh Borders where she grew up and spends her time gardening, writing, traveling, and taking retreats. She became interested in Benedictine monasticism as a result of living for ten years in Canterbury and has written several books on the Rule of St. Benedict including a life-Giving Way, published by The Liturgical Press, 1995. She holds a PhD. from Cambridge and was given an honorary doctorate from St. John's University for her contribution to Benedictine studies and for her ecumenical work. She was awarded the Templeton Prize for having started the Benedictine Experience weeks which are now widely held throughout America and England.
From the small beginnings of a few Christians in New Testament Jerusalem, the prayer of the Church spread, changing and evolving as it met and was assimilated by different cultures.
This classic study is a major resource for the liturgical scholar.
The book tells the story of the Jesuits’ great successes as missionaries, educators, scientists, cartographers, polemicists, theologians, poets, patrons of the arts, and confessors to kings. It tells the story of their failures and of the calamity that struck them in 1773 when Pope Clement XIV suppressed them worldwide. It tells how a subsequent pope restored them to life and how they have fared to this day in virtually every country in the world. Along the way it introduces readers to key figures in Jesuit history, such as Matteo Ricci and Pedro Arrupe, and important Jesuit writings, such as the Spiritual Exercises.
Concise and compelling, The Jesuits is an accessible introduction for anyone interested in world or church history. In addition to the narrative, the book provides a timeline, a list of significant figures, photos of important figures and locations, recommendations for additional reading, and more.
Beginning not with early Israelite worship, but with creation itself, this work uncovers the glories and beauty of true worship as it is progressively revealed from its beginning in the Garden to its climax in the new heavens and new earth. Throughout the book, the focus is on the integral issue of who we worship . . . and why. Ross then applies these discoveries to the contemporary Christian practice and debate.
Recalling the Hope of Glory stands to become a definitive resource for the pastor, worship leader, and those training for the ministry. Regardless of their denomination, readers will appreciate the author's high view of Scripture and just how much it can and should inform Christian worship.
In Reaching Out Without Dumbing Down, Marva Dawn writes to help local parishes and denominations think more thoroughly about worship and culture so that they can function effectively in contemporary society. She roots her discussion of worship issues in a careful assessment of significant aspects of the present technological, boomer, post-modern society and names criteria by which to judge the various cultural influences. She then sketches essential attributes of worship. Dawn recognizes that the vitality and faithfulness of our personal and corporate Christian lives and the effectiveness of our outreach to the world depend on the character that is formed in individuals and communities.
How can churches best reach out to society without dumbing down this essential character formation? Dawn discusses music, preaching, and all the accouterments of worship and offers practical suggestions for choosing the best tools and forms to deepen worship life, nurture faith development, and increase believers outreach throughout the universal church and to the world.
"The lessons were awesome! God knew I needed to be there. My heart overflows with joy."
"In your kitchen I learned about seasoning food. In your living room I reacquainted myself with the seasoning work of the Holy Spirit."
"The program gives value to women who are homemakers and wives. The Bible study and cooking lessons improved my perspective on staying home with children. . . . The program is a good eye-opener and refresher to what is really important: God, husband, children, family, and friends."
"So many positive things have happened in my life since, and because of, my Apples of Gold summer. Much confidence was gained that went far beyond the kitchen. . . . This was truly a life changing experience!"
"God knew I needed Apples of Gold. It is probably inconceivable to you to know how you and the mentors have touched the lives of Apples of Gold moms!"
"I loved being with older women, finding out how much we have in common, and building relationships with a different generation."
"Apples of Gold makes you focus on what is really important in your life. We discussed subjects I was not familiar with, like the real meaning of submission and purity. It certainly has changed the way I feel about them."
"Apples of Gold takes the warm atmosphere of the home and teaches how to extend it beyond the immediate family."
Gail Hover Ledbetter
Author, Family Fragrance
In Churches That Make a Difference, best-selling author Ron Sider and his coauthors give those involved in community outreach a comprehensive resource for developing holistic ministry--a balance of evangelism and social outreach. Illustrations and helpful organizational tips detail the how-to's of an effective holistic ministry. Case studies that show how different churches across the United States reach out to their communities provide a variety of ideas and practical applications. User-friendly tools are included as well for congregational studies, surveys, evaluations, and community assessments.
The authors draw on extensive experience with church ministries and faith-based organizations as they share the life-changing vision and biblical mandate for living the whole gospel. Church leaders will be encouraged in their process of developing and maintaining a holistic ministry, and local churches will rediscover a passion for loving the whole person the way Jesus did.
In this book, Fernando identifies the foundational elements that allow you to be both effective and joyful in your service. He shows from Jesus' own ministry that relating to the people you minister to, retreating from busyness to prayer, being affirmed and empowered by God, discipling younger leaders, and gaining strength from God's Word must be at the heart of your ministry.
Rich in Scripture and full of stories from Fernando's own years of ministry, this book will help men and women commit themselves afresh to those vital basics of ministry that make for long-term service that is both fruitful and joyful.
With Mormonism on the nation’s radar as never before, religious historian Matthew Bowman has written an essential book that pulls back the curtain on more than 180 years of Mormon history and doctrine. He recounts the church’s origins and explains how the Mormon vision has evolved—and with it the esteem in which Mormons have been held in the eyes of their countrymen. Admired on the one hand as hardworking paragons of family values, Mormons have also been derided as oddballs and persecuted as polygamists, heretics, and zealots. The place of Mormonism in public life continues to generate heated debate, yet the faith has never been more popular. One of the fastest-growing religions in the world, it retains an uneasy sense of its relationship with the main line of American culture.
Mormons will surely play an even greater role in American civic life in the years ahead. The Mormon People comes as a vital addition to the corpus of American religious history—a frank and balanced demystification of a faith that remains a mystery for many.
With a new afterword by the author.
“Fascinating and fair-minded . . . a sweeping soup-to-nuts primer on Mormonism.”—The Boston Globe
“A cogent, judicious, and important account of a faith that has been an important element in American history but remained surprisingly misunderstood.”—Michael Beschloss
“A thorough, stimulating rendering of the Mormon past and present.”—Kirkus Reviews
“[A] smart, lucid history.”—Tom Brokaw
The Ministry of the Missional Church leads pastors, ministry leaders, and laypersons through three simple arguments--the church is; the church does what it is; the church organizes what it does--in order to make sense of how missional churches work. And by focusing the work of the church as the work of the Triune God, this unique book will change the way readers think about the church and the world.
What will the Catholic Church be like in 100 years? Will there be a woman pope? Will dioceses throughout the United States and the rest of the world go bankrupt from years of scandal? In THE FUTURE CHURCH, John L. Allen puts forth the ten trends he believes will transform the Church into the twenty-second century. From the influence of Catholics in Africa, Asia, and Latin America on doctrine and practices to the impact of multinational organizations on local and ethical standards, Allen delves into the impact of globalization on the Roman Catholic Church and argues that it must rethink fundamental issues, policies, and ways of doing business. Allen shows that over the next century, the Church will have to respond to changes within the institution itself and in the world as a whole whether it is contending with biotechnical advances—including cloning and genetic enhancement—the aging Catholic population, or expanding the roles of the laity.
Like Thomas Friedman’s The World Is Flat, THE FUTURE CHURCH establishes a new framework for meeting the challenges of a changing world.
From the Hardcover edition.
"The Preschool Church "provides teachers with practical lesson ideas for preschoolers, recognizing that 3-5 year olds are curious about God and want to learn. Lesson seeds include discussion topics, suggestions for telling Bible stories, songs, activities, supply lists, and craft ideas that are easy for little hands, inexpensive to make, and result in a finished product kids can be proud of. The book also contains suggestions for including preschoolers in the larger church community and involving adults in the church school activities.
This book will be helpful to:
- Sunday school teachers
- Vacation Bible School teachers
- Parents for use in home instruction
- Weekday Church School classes
Eve Parker is an experienced preschool teacher. She is also an attorney, holding a B.A. degree and a J.D. Law degree from the University of Minnesota. She makes her home in Minneapolis where she is raising her two young sons. Her father and sister are ministers in the United Church of Christ.
While the Rule offers much to those seeking a pattern to the structure of their day-to-day, exterior" life, which de Waal's previous commentaries have addressed, this commentary focuses on what Benedict tells us about the interior life. It takes the shape of prayerful reflections on his words of wisdom regarding the disposition of the heart. It leads the reader, as the Rule was meant to lead the novice, to answer the very personal question we must all, as Christians, answer: "Am I truly seeking God?" Includes a copy of the Rule.
Esther de Waal is a well-known author whose interests lie particularly in monastic and Celtic spirituality. Her first book, Seeking God: The Way of St. Benedict (The Liturgical Press), continues to be a bestseller and has-been translated world wide. It was followed by Living with Contradiction: Further Reflections on the Rule and, most recently, A World Made Whole: Rediscovering the Celtic Tradition and A Seven Day Journey with Thomas Merton. She is married with four grown-up sons and lives in the Welsh Borders."
In one series, the original writings of the universally acknowledged teachers of the Catholic, Protestant, Eastern Orthodox, Jewish, Islamic and Native American traditions have been critically selected, translated and introduced by internationally recognized scholars and spiritual leaders.
The texts are first-rate, and the introductions are informative and reliable. The books will be a welcome addition to the bookshelf of every literate religious persons". -- The Christian Century