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With simple, down-to-earth language, Rolheiser illustrates the importance of prayer and offers techniques for how to pray, using examples from daily life, Scripture, and contemporary writers. He delves into the places that we fear to go with our issues about prayer, encouraging us with gentle kindness and words of hope and inspiration.
The book is divided into five sections.
Why Pray? Illustrates the purposes and benefits of prayer for ourselves, as well as for the broader Catholic community and even the world.Why Is It so Hard? Notes how our contemporary culture conspires against taking time out for solitude and prayer, and how our own ego—with its fears, restlessness, and narcissism—can work against developing a deeper relationship with God through prayer.What Is Prayer? Outlines the two basic types of prayer, that is, affective (personal) and priestly (for the world). Describes the many ways or methods for each type of prayer, such as meditation, contemplation, the divine office, the Mass, and Scripture.Sticking with It. This section covers the development of mature prayer, discussing ways to pray in times of boredom, disillusionment, crisis, helplessness, or after a loved one's death.Mysticism. Here we learn about this increasingly popular form of intimate relationship with God.This is a book for all manner of believers, whether your faith is solidly rooted, wavering between childhood religion and adult faith, or just not sure what you believe—or whether you believe at all. It addresses topics such as narcissism, pragmatism, efficiency, and self-gratification that work against a healthy spiritual life. Rolheiser takes us to a place of contact and comfort, in relationship not only with God but with our true selves as well.
A study guide for the book can be found here.
Ronald Rolheiser, a Roman Catholic priest with the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, is an internationally renowned speaker and spiritual writer. His award-winning weekly column "In Exile" is carried by more than seventy newspapers worldwide. He is president of the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, Texas. Rolheiser is among the most popular and inclusive spiritual writers today. Although rooted in the Catholic faith, he is able to transcend denominational boundaries and religious language to appeal to both practicing Christians and unaffiliated seekers.