Thank you for donating thirty books! More to come?

Thirty monasteries and convents have now received, or will soon receive, a free copy of The Big Book of Christian Mysticism, thanks to the generous support of the readers of this blog! I truly appreciate everyone who has sent in a gift to assist in purchasing copies of the book (at cost), and mailing them to religious communities throughout the United States (and even as far away as the Czech Republic).Would you please consider giving a gift of $16 to pay for a book, at wholesale cost, and the … [Read more...]

Would you give a book to a monastery, please?

A couple of weeks ago, one of my dearest monk friends (who gets written about on this blog all the time, usually anonymously — see this post, for example) brought in to the Abbey Store a check that a friend of his had written to him. Typical of the monks, he used the money to benefit someone other than himself: he bought a copy of The Big Book of Christian Mysticism to send to the monks of Our Lady of Gethsemani — the monastery where Thomas Merton lived.I did not put him up to this. As is so of … [Read more...]

Cloister Talks

Cloister Talks: Learning from My Friends the Monks By Jon M. Sweeney Grand Rapids: Brazos Press, 2009 Review by Carl McColmanMonasteries are archetypal. Even for Protestants who live in a religious milieu that does not include monastic communities, monks and nuns (and their communal way of life) symbolize either strong positive or negative concepts: at worst, they represent religious decadence or hypocrisy, no doubt a lingering after-effect of the hostilities of the reformation era or the … [Read more...]