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Godzdogz

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Recommended books for Lent 2015

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Here are some books which the Godzdogz Team has found nourishing spiritual reading. Do share your own ideas with us, and let us know if you found any of these helpful this Lent!

Ruth Burrows OCD, Love Unknown

How do we practically get caught up in the life and love of the Trinity? How are we to follow the path of Jesus? How can we be holy? This book is an enclosed Carmelite Nun’s attempt to answer such questions. With great spiritual insight and practical insight, she reveals that the challenges of Christian love are present within the cloister as outside, and that all must allow God’s love to take root within us through prayer and charity.

Rowan Williams, Meeting God in Mark

In this liturgical year (B), we are reading through St Mark’s Gospel in the Sunday liturgy. St Mark’s is the shortest Gospel, and very direct in style. Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, reminds us that many people have come to Christian faith, or had their faith strengthened, simply by reading through Mark’s Gospel without any preparation. It’s an easy and remarkably rewarding thing to do! But if you want an approachable guide to Mark and the subtleties under the surface (and there are many fascinating depths), this short and readable book will open your eyes to the Gospel in a new light.

Fulton Sheen, Life of Christ

This book reveals aspects of Our Lord’s earthly life in a refreshing and accessible way. He writes in a beautiful way, and it is easy to forget at times that Sheen wasn’t there walking alongside Our Lord all those years ago. There is something to treasure on every page and a chapter a day will provide ample material for reflection and prayer.

St Robert Bellarmine, Live well, die holy

This sixteenth-century guide to spirituality is both insightful and practical. Cardinal Bellarmine guides his reader through the hows and whys of the spiritual life and offers them useful (and doable!) ways of conforming their daily lives to the Gospel. The path is open to anyone; by living well, filling our days with good deeds and pious practices we can die holy.

St Francis de Sales, The Sermons of St Francis de Sales for Lent

A great little book of treatment during Lent, from a famous Doctor of the Church, this book is for the vocation of all! In these 12 sermons preached to the Visitation nuns in Lent of 1622, what is surprising is that those words of St Francis de Sales are still of vital importance to all those living the Christian life today. The fruits of this book are endless, as I read it again and again every year during Lent, with its central themes of fasting, eternal happiness, and the attitudes we should have to death, humility, and obedience. St Francis uniquely shows that the awe-inspiring sense of God’s special providence truly encompasses all. To follow the homilies as you journey through Lent is like having St Francis preaching to you directly as the holy season unfolds towards Our Lord’s Passion. The holy Scriptures are treated with great reverence by St Francis, but also with great familiarity and insightful teachings. St Francis reminds us that all are weak and foolish in the religious life, but again reminds us that this folly, in unison with steady practice of the virtues, unites us with great hope and confidence in God.

Top image: St Francis de Sales, from the book cover of The Sermons of St Francis de Sales, translated by the Nuns of the Visitation and edited by Father Lewis Fiorelli, OSFS.

Comments

John Woodhouse commented on 17-Feb-2015 09:59 AM
The 2015 Archbishop of Canterbury's Lent book is by Desmond Tutu and is excellent. Last year's by Ben Quoish was also excellent.
Pia Vogler commented on 17-Feb-2015 08:47 PM
It makes me very happy to see an image of St Francis de Sales on your website. He is also one of my favorite Saints and I find his writings on the love of God very inspiring.

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