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SUMMER 2003
Vol 37 No 4


Editorial
CONSCIENCE OUR GUIDE

Brian Lewis
THE ROLE OF THE CHURCH IN THE FORMATION OF CHRISTIAN CONSCIENCE

Philip Malone MSC
THE COMPLETE IDIOTíS GUIDE TO UNDERSTANDING MORAL THEOLOGY

Liz Hepburn IBVM
THE CULTIVATION OF CONSCIENCE

Tom Ryan SM
IN GODíS IMAGE: TOWARDS A THEOLOGY OF OUR EMOTIONS

Neil Pembroke
JUNG AND THE MORAL SELF

Bruce Duncan CSsR
A SCHIZOPHRENIC PROCESS IN THE CHURCH? THE CONSERVATIVE RETREAT FROM THE SOCIAL DIMENSION OF THE GOSPEL

John Ryan
PRAYER - ANSWERED?


BOOKROOM

Kevin Mark
NEW RELIGIOUS BOOKS BY AUSTRALASIAN AUTHORS



 

BOOKROOM
Resources for liturgy and prayer

At this time of year we may still be on the look-out for resources for worship and prayer in the coming year. The Archdiocese of Chicago produces Liturgy Training Publications,a series of books for use by parishes and religious communities; they are well worth considering. The following are the latest titles.

Paul Turner, 2004 Sourcebook for Sundays and Seasons: An Almanac of Parish Liturgy for Sundays and Seasons. Archdiocese of Chicago: Liturgy Training Publications, Chicago; US $15.00 [I-56854-426-X]; 2003
‘This long book is about little things. Sometimes the details are tedious. But God is in the details’ (p.vii). This modest statement by the author/editor gives a sense of the spirit of the book, which is helpful and anything but tedious. The text follows the liturgical calendar of the Catholic Church and attends to several other calendars. It provides seasonal overviews (Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter— the Paschal Triduum gets similar treatment, Ordinary Time). There are ideas for each day, but the primary purpose is to assist with celebrations of Sundays and Seasons. Bulletin inserts are also offered at no extra charge. The mystery of each Sunday liturgy is pondered, and reflections on Scripture are provided. The presentation is imaginative and theadvice given is flexible.

Michael Cameron et al., At Home With The Word 2004: Sunday Scriptures and Scripture Insights. Archdiocese of Chicago: Liturgy Training Publications, Chicago; US $8.00 [I-56854-421-9]; 2003. Also available in a large print edition: US $10.00.
The full texts and readings of Sunday liturgies are presented, followed by pointers to applications described as ‘practice of virtues’ (prudence, temperance, fortitude, justice), followed by ‘Scripture Insights’. The translation of the readings is that used in the US lectionary—the Revised Common Lectionary, which relies on The New American Bible; the unfamiliar translation will be a drawback for many Australian readers.

Bryan M Cones, Daily Prayer 2004. Archdiocese of Chicago: Liturgy Training Publications, Chicago; US $15.00 [I-56854-418-9]; 2003.
This is a book of prayer, psalms, sacred reading and reflection in tune with the seasons, feasts and ordinary days of the year. It is intended for individual and group use, is appropriate for older students and teachers, catechumens and candidates for full communion—in fact for any person or group that wants to pray in rhythm with the Church. Each day takes one page. Highly recommended, with the same warning as above about the unfamiliar translation of Scripture for Australians, except that it should not be quite so distracting in this book.


Julie Lonneman, Clip Art for Sundays and Solemnities. Archdiocese of Chicago: Liturgy Training Publications, Chicago; US $20.00 [I-56854-489-8]; 2003.
Covers the three-year cycle of the lectionary and all the major feasts. Strong images, with biblical feel but contemporary artistic presentation. For parish bulletins, hand-outs, newsletters, parish websites. Can be photocopied from the page or downloaded from the CD which comes as part of the package.

Two books: Prayer in Times of Crisis and Prayer During the Night. These small books, also published by the Archdiocese of Chicago: Liturgy Training Publications, are collections of short prayers from diverse religious traditions. I am unable to furnish the publication details as I gave them to a person who was in great pain and seeking spiritual nourishment. They were accepted with gratitude.

Anselm Grun, A Path Through the Desert: 40 Sayings of the Desert Fathers. St Pauls Publishing, London; [0-85439-663-2]; 2003.
This is a collection of wise sayings of monks who retired to the deserts of Egypt during the third to the sixth centuries. They were respected as holy me n striving to live the Gospel in a radical way. The desert was seen as a place where one could become human—one with God—by facing oneself and one’s demons with the help of God. These sayings were given to people who flocked to them for counsel and direction for their life journey.

Twenty of the sayings are from various monks, taken from a collection of over a thousand sayings, or apophthegms, that have been preserved; the other twenty are taken from The Praktikos of Evagrius Ponticus, the most important spiritual author of the fourth century. Each ‘chapter’ of this book is headed by a short saying of one or two sentences from the Father, followed by less than two pages from Fr Anselm (of the Benedictine Abbey of Munsterschwarzach in Germany) who ‘breaks open’ the saying to help us discover the depth of the wisdom contained.

I was surprised to find that principles I had been attributing to the genius of later spiritual masters are already found in the advice of these ancient desert fathers, and that made these principles all the more reliable since they are clearly more deeply embedded in Christian tradition than I had previously realised. Highly recommended.

- Ed.