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From the Publisher
In their approach to the question, the style of writing and starting points, these authors make for a varied collection . . . they are ready to face what they see as hard choices needed for monasticism to continue to offer a vision to others.
The Downside Review
Karl Rahner’s observation that in the future, Christians will be mystics or they will be nothing at all, might well summarize the ‘vision’ for monastics in this volume of essays, A Monastic Vision for the Twenty-first Century. Through a wide variety of approaches, the one underlying theme seems to be that the search for God in prayer and communal living is essential to monastics living in any century.
When a monk wonders out loud in a group of monastics and others interested in monasticism and its future, vigorous and enlightening discussion often ensues. This collection of essays results from questions posed in such a setting: what can church and world expect from monasticism in the twenty-first century? How might it be ideally incarnated for the future? Between the bookends of a sharply focused introduction and a poetic lectio on the Easter proclamation, readers discover a wide variety of responses by Cistercian and Benedictine men and women and other writers who, though not members of monasteries, have had long-standing experience and association with monasticism.
American Benedictine Review
The essays all, in their various ways, look at the present, asking what is the real value of monastic life? What is proving to be most attractive and enduring? This is realistic and at the same time an inspiration. All the essays are excellent and would bear several readings.
Quarterly Review of the Community of the Resurrection
In this thought-provoking study Brother Patrick Hart, former secretary to Thomas Merton, has drawn from a notable list of collaborators a full spectrum of ideas on the future of monasticism. . . . Thomas Merton’s ideas permeate this compilation, as contributors frequently cite the renowned Trappist monk. Readers who, like them, are far from ready to pull down the curtains on monastic life will be pleased to find these pages filled with new seeds of contemplation.
A Monastic Vision for the 21st Century is highly recommended to those interested in the future of Benedictine and Cistercian monasticism.
Curled Up With A Good Book