Previously recorded by Henri Nouwen as Desert Spirituality and Contemporary Ministry.
©1991 Henri J. M. Nouwen; (P)2009 christianaudio.com
Will need to listen to it again, this time in my study with a pen and paper ready!
It’s hard to give anything but a five star rating to Nouwen. Sometimes I suspect the man had God ghost write his books. This one, a short introduction to the Desert Fathers and Mothers, the Abbas and Ammas, meditates on silence and contemplation. Ministers, he writes, tend to be doers, caught up in parish committees and ministries of caring. (I found his constant reference to ministers puzzling. Is this written for clerics? But then again, all Christians are called to be ministers.) We forget the need for silence, alone time with God. The Desert Fathers spent years in silence with God. But that did not make them alone or apart from the world. It made them more open and compassionate with those who came to visit them. Silence and contemplation, while they are fostered by spiritual practices of prayer and meditation, are less a state of mind to engage in at times and more a state of being to live at all times. Nouwen is always an inspiration.
Found the stress on contemplation overshadowed by slights to the congregation and priests. Hoped for more spiritual insight.
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