15 Days of Prayer with Henri Nouwen

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Overview

Henri Nouwen (1932-1996) is considered one of the greatest spiritual masters of the modern age. Born, educated and ordained in Holland, he came to America as a professor of pastoral theology. Invited by Jean Vanier to join his mission to help the handicapped, Nouwen left academia behind to become pastor of L'Arche Daybreak, a home for the disabled in Toronto. There, among God's wounded, he found a home and his greatest happiness. A heart attack cut short his rich life as writer,...

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15 Days of Prayer with Henri Nouwen

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Overview

Henri Nouwen (1932-1996) is considered one of the greatest spiritual masters of the modern age. Born, educated and ordained in Holland, he came to America as a professor of pastoral theology. Invited by Jean Vanier to join his mission to help the handicapped, Nouwen left academia behind to become pastor of L'Arche Daybreak, a home for the disabled in Toronto. There, among God's wounded, he found a home and his greatest happiness. A heart attack cut short his rich life as writer, lecturer and priest.

Nouwen drew standing room only audiences, who flocked to hear his message that we are God's beloved children, that God is the One of unconditional love who loves us now, with no strings attached. His many books are arrows pointing towards this love, reminding Christians of the timeless message that Christ came into the world not to blame but to love.

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Editorial Reviews

Religious Studies Review
Waldron's valuable book leads the reader through fifteen prayer periods with Nouwen as a spiritual companion to achieve a more intimate relationship with God. The reader is meant to navigate this work with three rules in mind: 1) reading in an atmosphere that allows for reflection without distraction; 2) reading during a time when one is most receptive to meditation and reflection; and, most importantly, 3) allowing for the freedom to accept oneself without judgment. Following an introduction as well as an account of Nouwen's life and spiritual practice, this book is divided into fifteen chapters that interweave Nouwen's spiritual teachings and his love of visual art. Each chapter ends with thoughtful reflection questions and calls the reader to participate in meditation and prayer on a specified topic. Particularly noteworthy are Waldron's chapters on 'The Cup of Life' and 'Writing,' where the reader is invited to embrace the life given by God and to seek an emotional outlet that allows one to recharge and discover one's latent abilities. This book constitutes a good primer for individuals seeking to enhance their spiritual life. It is accessible to both beginners and seasoned meditators alike, and would be a great asset to individuals, parishes, and retreat centers.'
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781565483248
  • Publisher: New City Press NY
  • Publication date: 10/1/2009
  • Series: 15 Days of Prayer
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 443,655
  • Product dimensions: 4.60 (w) x 7.40 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Lecturer and Retreat Director Robert Waldron has received four fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities as well as a 1997 first prize from the Catholic Press Association. He has written extensively on the spiritual life, especially the life and teaching of Thomas Merton and Henri Nouwen. He resides in Boston, Massachusetts.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Surrender yourself to God

    In this latest entry in the "15 Days of Prayer With" series, author Robert Waldron crafts events from the life and work of Henri Nouwen into short, practical meditations on topics such as intimacy, friendship and prayer. Born in 1932, Nouwen spent his adult life as a brilliant and charismatic teacher, gifted preacher, prolific writer, and priest.

    Following the series format, the book opens with a chronology and overview of Nouwen's life. Each of the 15 chapters begins with a focus statement and ends with questions for reflection. A guide on how to use the book points out that its purpose is to bring readers to a closer relationship with God.

    As one who considered himself "wounded," Nouwen learned to see the hurt in others and to rely on God's mercy. "His spirituality exclaims for all to hear: God accepts and loves you as you are now, with all your imperfections, flaws, and wounds," Waldron writes.

    Nouwen's insecurity and self-doubt, led to his exaggerated need for approval, acceptance and affection, which sometimes turned friends away. Through intensive therapy following a nervous breakdown, Nouwen came to see that only God could fill the empty space at the center of his being.

    Another source of insight for Nouwen grew out of his fascination with circus clowns and trapeze artists. Waldron tells of the priest's friendship with a European family of "fliers." Nouwen recounted one conversation in which the flier explained, "I have simply to stretch out my arms and hands and wait for him to catch me and pull me safely over the apron behind the catchbar." That image gave birth to Nouwen's philosophy of life and death, Waldron writes. "Surrender yourself to God, our catcher. He will catch us during life's airy leaps and flights; He will also catch us in our greatest leap, into the darkness of death."

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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