Monday 23 March 2020

Nine Days to Rediscover the Joy of Prayer - Jacques Philippe

Nine Days to Rediscover the Joy of Prayer
Jacques Philippe
Timothée Berthon (Editor)
Neal Carter (Translator)
Scepter Publishers
eISBN 9781594173356

My introduction to the writings of father Jacques Philippe was Time For God, which I first read 12 years ago. I have reread that book four times now and every time I read it, I get something more out of it. And when he has a new book come out in French, I eagerly await it being available in English. This time it looks like the two editions are publishing at the same time, and this is the second book I have read in the Nine Days Series. Nine Days to Welcome Peace, was an excellent read, and this one was also. I picked it up even before I finished this one, and will be extra diligent about keeping my eyes open for other books in this series. Father Philippe states about this series that:

“The “Nine Days to” collection offers a guided retreat to be lived at home or on vacation, in the subway or on the train, for people who have little time but wish to devote ten minutes a day to spiritual growth.

Each book in the collection offers nine days of inspiring meditations that surround a specific theme for advancement in the spiritual life. Each serves as both a school of prayer and an authentic tool of self-transformation.

Two meditations are offered for each day. One can be experienced in the morning and the other at any opportune moment during the day or evening.

The journey includes reflection exercises, the Word of God, a meditation from a saint or another great spiritual author, and a resolution—all geared to help the participant dive into an authentic spiritual experience.”

When I read this book the first time time I did part in the morning and part at lunch. Returning to it at lunch helped to focus my afternoon in a new way. 

The chapters in this volume are:
First Day:
Responding To A Call
Second Day:
 Putting God First
Third Day:
 Praying Freely
Fourth Day:
 Living Heaven On Earth
Fifth Day:
 Prayer Makes Me Know God
Sixth Day:
 Discovering My Profound Identity
Seventh Day:
 Prayer Makes Me Capable Of Loving My Neighbor
Eighth Day:
 The More I Pray, The More I Become Free
Ninth Day:
 Unifying My Life

And each of the nine days follows this pattern:

Invitation To Contemplation
Sign Of The Cross
Prayer To The Holy Spirit
The Word of God
Meditation From Fr. Jacques Philippe
Light From A Faithful Witness
The Light Of The Saints

The sections in each day vary slightly from the other volume currently available in the series. The section The Light of the Saints sometimes comprises quotes from more than one source. Each day is preceded by a full color photo and in this volume, they appear to all be photo’s of mosaics. We are not told where the excerpts from Father Phillipe are from, or if they were written specifically for this book, or this series. But in the grand scheme of things that does not matter. In the preface to the other volume it states that these meditations are available as a pamphlet or on CD. So I assume the original French versions come from retreats that Father Philippe has lead. And even if in English we do not have access to the audio, the book itself makes a wonderful 9-day personal retreat. Or it could even be used by a group or family. 

This is another wonderful resource for spiritual growth from Father Philippe. And I know I will be reading them all as the series becomes available and will return to them again and again. An excellent little volume. I highly recommend this and also the other Nine Days book that is available.

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2020 Catholic Reading Plan

Other Books By Fr. Jacques Philippe
From Scepter:

Called to Life
Time For God
Interior Freedom
In the School of the Holy Spirit
The Way of Trust and Love - A Retreat Guided By St. Therese of Lisieux
Thirsting for Prayer
Real Mercy: Mary, Forgiveness, and Trust

Fire and Light: Learning to Receive the Gift of God
The Eight Doors of the Kingdom: Meditations on the Beatitudes
Nine Days to Rediscover the Joy of Prayer
Nine Days to Welcome Peace
Priestly Fatherhood

St Paul's Alba House:
Searching for and Maintaining Peace
Discerning Your Vocation: A Catholic Guide for Young Adults (Forward)

Pauline Books and Media:

Time For God

Time For God
I Choose to be Free: the Power of Faith Hope & Charity (a different edition of Interior Freedom)

No comments: