Sunday 5 February 2017

Be Holy A Catholic's Guide to the Spiritual Life - Thomas G. Morrow

Be Holy
A Catholic's Guide to the Spiritual Life
Thomas G. Morrow
Servant Books a division of
Franciscan  Media
ISBN 9780867168785

This is the second book I have read by Father Thomas G. Morrow, the other published under the name Rev T.G. Morrow. Both books were excellent. But having read Overcoming Sinful Anger prior to reading this book I had really high expectations.  Father Morrow writes in a very engaging way. Both of his book I have read have really benefited my spiritual life. To be honest this book has so much good content I am likely to go back and reread it again in a year, just as a check in to see how I am doing and as a reminder.

The sections in this book are:
Foreword by Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl
Part One: Motivations for Holiness
The Delight of Heaven: The Divine Marriage
The Reality of Hell
The Suffering of Purgatory
The Pursuit of Happiness
Part Two: The Life of Grace
The Foundation: Prayer
Beginning Prayer
Spiritual Reading
Meditation and Contemplation
Difficulties in Prayer
Commitment to Prayer
The Sacrament of Penance
The Mass, "Source and Summit of the Christian Life"
Eucharistic Adoration
Part Three: Loving Our Neighbor
The Spiritual Works of Mercy
The Corporal Works of Mercy
Part Four: The Life of Virtue
The Theological Virtues: Faith, Hope and Charity
Prudence, Justice and Fortitude
The Fruits of the Holy Spirit
The Shortest Way to the Kingdom

In these 20 chapters and coming in at under 200 pages this book packs a lot of great content in tightly. In the forward Archbishop Wuerl states "My hope is that Be Holy: A Catholic's Guide to the Spiritual Life will help readers grow in appreciation of the many gifts Christ has given to assist us as we make our way toward union with God in heaven. As Father Morrow reminds us, "holiness is the happiest way to live" because it brings us to share forever in the life of the Holy Trinity." And having read this book I can state that if you read it with an open heart it will live up to that expectation. In the introduction Rev Morrow states "There is no way we can overestimate the tremendous happiness of heaven, nor the horror of hell and the great suffering of purgatory for those who do not take seriously the universal call to holiness (Lumen Gentium, 40). It seems certain that if more people kept in mind that they will surely die one day and meet the Lord-at which time their eternal destiny will be sealed-they might be more dedicated to preparing for that crucial day. This is a powerful motivation to live the gospel." And the rest of the book has the purpose of convincing us of this truth and giving us tools and guidance to live it.

There were so many lessons I took from this book, lessons on temperance, patience, joy; but also about choice, choosing to live joy, choosing to be obedient, choosing to learn to love. This is a great read with the goal of helping us get to heaven. It does so by looking at a plan of life, the virtues, works of mercy, the sacraments, spiritual reading and more.

An excellent resource for any serious Catholic!

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2017 Catholic Reading Plan!

Books by Father Morrow:
Be Holy: A Catholic's Guide to the Spiritual Life
Achieving Chastity in a Pornographic World
Who's Who in Heaven: Real Saints for Families in Plain English
Christian Courtship in an Oversexed World: A Guide for Catholics
Overcoming Sinful Anger

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