Friday 10 July 2020

Spiritual First Aid Healing Through the Sacraments - Fr Jim McManus CssR

Spiritual First Aid: Healing Through the Sacraments
Fr Jim McManus CssR
Catholic Truth Society
eISBN 9781784692322
CTS Booklet PA40

Over the last few years, I have read over 150 volumes from the CTS. I have read books from many series. And many authors. Lately I have read several books that are part of the CTS Devotions and Prayer Series, and one of those when I finished it has this as a recommended read. I picked it up immediately and started reading it. There are many books written by Fr Jim McManus CssR, but most were published by Redemptorist Press. I believe this is only one of two written by Father Jim for the Catholic Truth Society. This is an excellent volume. This book was released in both print and electronically in 2017. The description of the volume is:

“We can all be hurt easily by the words, attitudes and actions of others. As a result we often find it hard to love the person who hurt us.

But while it is painful enough to be hurt, it is spiritually more painful to harden one’s heart. Because in the refusal to forgive others – making the sincere gift of self – we deny ourselves of the opportunity to discover our true identity – that is, to love and to be loved.

Through his insight into the three great sacraments of healing (Reconciliation, Anointing of the Sick and the Holy Eucharist) instituted by Jesus Christ himself, acclaimed author Fr Jim McManus helps us to tend to our spiritual wounds so that we may rediscover our true selves, and reap the reward of loving in sincere self-giving – which is the gift of sincere happiness.” 

And the chapters in the volume are:

Created to love
Healing wounded love in the Sacrament of Confession
The Sacrament of the Sick
The Eucharist and the healing of the whole person
Further reading

The first chapter of this volume concludes with these words:

“In this booklet we will reflect on the transforming miracle of Confession, when God forgives all our sins, heals the wounds inflicted on our hearts by sin, and purifies and restores our capacity to love as Christ loves. We will also discuss the healing gift of the sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick, in which Jesus comes to fill the sick person with his healing love and peace. And, keeping the good wine to last, we will reflect on how, in the great sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, we can offer to God all our joys and sorrows, all our successes and failures, all our sins and all our virtues, and how God receives all and transforms all. The Holy Eucharist is the greatest of all the sacraments, the ultimate source of healing.”

I have told friends and family for years that the greatest thing about the Catholic Church is confession and communion. And this book delves deeply into those two sacraments and also the anointing of the sick. While researching to prepare this review I began to wonder if this volume was an excerpt of other writings from Fr McManus. Going back through the book, I now do not believe that to be the case. This work appears to have been written specifically for the CTS, and for you and me. 

This is an amazing volume. It is filled with personal stories of healings witnessed. But it also talks of the times where there is not a miraculous healing. It brings home the centrality of the sacramental life, and its importance to us a believer, as Catholics. At the end of each chapter are extensive end notes. And At the end of the book a list of other volumes from Father Jim. 

It is an excellent little volume and one I highly recommend. The CtS has many excellent reads. What I like about some of the older physical volumes is the list of books in the series at the end. The more recent eBooks do not have this. But almost every time I finish one, I find 2 or three I want to add to my ‘to be read list’. I highly recommend this specific book. 

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2020 Catholic Reading Plan! For other reviews of books from the Catholic Truth Society click here.

Books by Fr Jim McManus CssR:
All Generations Will Call Me Blessed
At Home in the Mysteries of Christ
Embraced by Mercy
Finding Forgiveness
Fountain of Grace: Celebrating 150 Years of the Icon of Love
Going to Mass
Hallowed Be Thy Name
Healing Power of the Sacraments
Healing in the Spirit
Healing Wounds in the Field Hospital of the Church
I Am My Body
Inside Job
Our Spiritual Lifeline
Search for Serenity
Spiritual First Aid
Stations of the Cross: The Way of Divine Mercy
Talking about Jesus
The Inside Job
True Self-Esteem: Precious in the Eyes of God

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