Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Let's start Lent off on the right foot

For something a little different, today I am going to join in a meme being hosted by RAnn at This, That and the Other Thing, about Lenten reading. As you may, or may not know, today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the season of Lent, which is a period of 40 days leading up Easter and helping to prepare us for the feast, the pinnacle of the Christian year. One is encouraged to fast, give alms, do acts of penance, prayer and spiritual reading.
So let's see what the question is....

What books have you read and/or reviewed in the last year that you would recommend to people looking for Lenten reading? What book/s is/are you reading this Lent?

Unlike RAnn, who also reviews for a Catholic bookseller, my reviews have tended to be of a more secular nature. But what have I read? Well, it is not something that I read this year, but a book that I loved, that I think is a true classic about the spiritual life and would recommend to any reader is The Seven Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton, his autobiography of his journey from a VERY secular young man to a Trappist monk. I have my issues with Merton in his later life, and not everyone is so positive about this book, but I loved it and really, as i said, think it is a classic.

What am I going to read? Well, I have picked a recent arrival off my TBR pile {{watch out Kitty!!}}, Mother Teresa's Secret Fire by Joseph Langford.
I have not read it yet, but it comes highly recommended from someone whose opinion I respect, so I will quote a bit about the book from the cover description.
"Christians and non-Christians alike long for something larger than our daily routine, something more meaningful and sustaining that anything money, fame, or power can buy.

There is no better example that Mother Teresa. She continues to be a worldwide icon, a symbol of the nobility of the human spirit and every person's capacity to do extraordinary things.

At age 38, Mother Teresa broke out of her safe and reliable routine as a teacher. With only five rupees to her name, she began going daily into the slums of Calcutta. By the time of her death in 1997, her Missionaries of Charity had spread to more than 120 countries and touched millions of lives.

What was it that caused this transformation? How do we account for her universal impact from such extreme, humble conditions? What was it in her that touched so many so deeply?"
I had the privilege once to hear Mother Teresa speak and I will never forget it...and maybe when I review the book by the end of Lent, I will tell you about it.

In the mean time, be sure to go over to RAnn's blog and read her suggestions and maybe join in with you own.


  1. Hi Caite,

    I love "The Seven Storey Mountain" although it's been awhile since I read it (pre-blogging days) and hence no review. Lucky you getting to meet Mother Teresa! I have "Secret Fire" and hope to read it before long too--will be looking for your review!

    Nice to "meet" you and thanks for visiting my blog!

  2. hi. i'm a fuzzy puppy so there's no place for me to get ashes. my mom went last night though. she said she had to park on the grass somewhere randomly because there were THAT many people there - like you'd have expected the POPE to be there! she also said she read the mother teresa book in 4th grade.


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