A work of major importance, written for an ecumenical audience, Doors to the Sacred is a sweeping and detailed account of the historical and cultural evolution of sacramental rituals and practices.Since its initial publication, the book has garnered widespread critical acclaim and has become a mainstay not only for students but for all thinking Christians who want to understand the past fully while making their present participation in the sacraments more genuine and intelligent. Martos has greatly expanded all of the bibliographic material and has incorporated the latest developments in theological study and inquiry. His focus is on the seven ecclesial sacraments of the Catholic Church: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Reconciliation, Anointing, Marriage, and Orders. Though based on thorough research and impressive scholarship, Doors to the Sacred is written in a lively style that will be welcomed by a general audience. Paperback
"This is written for those who are 'here, but almost there, ' which really means all of us mortals," the author writes in the introduction. "I hope to discuss: How does 'life here' relate to 'life there?' How does 'life here' prepare us for 'life there?' and how can we help those who are imminently close to 'there' ready themselves for the big transition? How do we ready ourselves for that same experience? And finally there is the really big question: What can we say about 'life there?' What is it like?"In this gentle, witty book, William Shannon tackles the essential questions for all mortals: How can a mature consideration of death contribute to a richer, more complete life? How can we face the inevitable (for ourselves and others) with good sense, dignity and faith? What do we, as Catholics, believe about life after death?
A third edition of this textbook is now available. Rooted in the life and ministry of Jesus and the message of the New Testament, the Church proclaims: "Justice is constitutive of the Gospel." Building upon the broad tradition of Catholic social teaching, this third book in our popular Come & See Series offers a fresh discussion of contemporary issues (disarmament, human rights, the option for the poor). Through Scripture, Tradition, world events, and living examples of heroism and holiness ranging from the simple to the extraordinary, Living Justice develops your understanding of Catholic social teaching and inspires you for service.
In 1514, Rome, the Eternal City, was the center of the Christian world and home and workshop to Raphael, Leonardo, and Michelangelo. It was also the city of Pope Leo X, the pleasure-loving pontiff whose court was infamous for its excess, frivolity and impropriety, as well as for its newly-arrived white elephant Hanno. Hanno became a star feature in processions and festivals, and the subject of countless paintings, sculptures and fountains. In this fascinating glimpse at a forgotten sidenote to history, Silvio A. Bedini gives us an elephant's-back view of early modern Europe and the inner workings of the Vatican at the height of its influence. Charmingly written with dozens of accompanying photographs and illustrations, The Pope's Elephant will delight readers just as Hanno delighted the people of Rome five centuries ago.
These lectures on the Christian Sacraments were delivered in Jerusalem in the mid-fourth century, as an exposition of the rites of Christian initiation -- Baptism, Chrismation and the Eucharist -- for the newly baptized. A rich source of information on the worship of the early Church. With parallel Greek text.
This new edition of the Image classic, with more than 100,000 copies sold, brings E. Allison Peers's magnificent translation of St. John of the Cross's masterpiece Dark Night of the Soul to a new generation of readers and will renew the interest of those already familiar with its soaring poetry and timeless truths. The sixteenth-century Carmelite monk St. John of the Cross stands alongside St. Teresa of Avila as the West's best known and most beloved Christian mystic. As Peers writes in the Introduction to his definitive translation of Dark Night of the Soul, "The most sublime of all Spanish mystics, he soars aloft on the wings of Divine love to heights known hardly to any of them... True to the character of his thought, his style is always forceful and energetic."Dark Night of the Soul follows the soul's journey from a state of abandonment and darkness to a loving union with God. In a voice at once grandiose and melodious, and a style that combines the systematic theology of St. Thomas Aquinas with rapturous poetry, St. John describes the process of moving away from routine religious rituals and embracing a Being who can be known only through love. His words, Peers writes, "are a wonderful illustration of the theological truth that grace, far from destroying nature, ennobles and dignifies it, and of the agreement always found between the natural and the supernatural -- between the principles of sound reason and the sublime manifestations of Divine grace." One of the greatest contributions to the literature of mysticism, Dark Night of the Soul offers support and encouragement to all who seek oneness with God.
Responding to the Pope's Apostolic Letter on the Rosary, his five new "Luminous Mysteries," and declaration of 2003 as "The Year of the Rosary," Fr. Groeschel presents this book of meditations on all 20 mysteries of the rosary. Drawing on his vast personal experiences as well as the grand traditions of the Church, he takes us on a spiritual journey that will inspire us to greater depths of prayer. This special book includes: The Pope's Letter on the Rosary, Rosarium Virginis Mariae, and lavishly illustrated with 20 classic color paintings.
There are one billion Catholics in the world today, spread over every continent, speaking almost every conceivable language, and all answering to a single authority. The Vatican is a unique international organization, both in terms of its extraordinary power and influence, and in terms of its endurance. Popes come and go, but the elaborate and complex bureaucracy called the Vatican lives on. For centuries, it has served and sometimes undermined popes; it has been praised and blamed for the actions of the pope and for the state of the church. Yet an objective examination of the workings of the Vatican has been unavailable until now.
Drawing on more than a hundred interviews with Vatican officials, this book affords a firsthand look at the people, the politics, and the organization behind the institution. Reese brings remarkable clarity to the almost Byzantine bureaucracy of congregations, agencies, secretariats, tribunals, nunciature, and offices, showing how they serve the pope and, through him, the universal church. He gives a lively account of how popes are elected and bishops appointed, how dissident theologians are disciplined and civil authorities dealt with. Throughout, revealing and colorful anecdotes from church history and the present day bring the unique culture of the Vatican to life.
The Vatican is a fascinating institution, a model of continuity and adaptation, which remains constant while functioning powerfully in a changing world. As never before, this book provides a clear, objective perspective on how the enormously complex institution surrounding the papacy operates on a day-to-day level, how it has adapted and endured for close to two thousand years, and how it is likely to face the challenges of the next millennium.
The story of four modern American Catholics who made literature out of their search for God
In the mid-twentieth century four American Catholics came to believe that the best way to explore the questions of religious faith was to write about them-in works that readers of all kinds could admire. The Life You Save May Be Your Own is their story-a vivid and enthralling account of great writers and their power over us.
Thomas Merton was a Trappist monk in Kentucky; Dorothy Day the founder of the Catholic Worker in New York; Flannery O'Connor a "Christ-haunted" literary prodigy in Georgia; Walker Percy a doctor in New Orleans who quit medicine to write fiction and philosophy. A friend came up with a name for them-the School of the Holy Ghost-and for three decades they exchanged letters, ardently read one another's books, and grappled with what one of them called a "predicament shared in common."
A pilgrimage is a journey taken in light of a story; and in The Life You Save May Be Your Own Paul Elie tells these writers' story as a pilgrimage from the God-obsessed literary past of Dante and Dostoevsky out into the thrilling chaos of postwar American life. It is a story of how the Catholic faith, in their vision of things, took on forms the faithful could not have anticipated. And it is a story about the ways we look to great books and writers to help us make sense of our experience, about the power of literature to change-to save-our lives.