Tuesday, July 20, 2010

10 Books Presented to Korean Catholics

The Peace Weekly. in its campaign to get Catholics to read, recommends ten books from a list of 100 Catholic Classics. In subsequent issues, the newspaper will continue to inspire and prod readers to take up the habit of reading. The ten books will be familiar to most readers, and all have been translated into Korean.

1) The Confessions of St. Augustine.( 397-400)

His autobiography, from his birth to the time after he becomes a bishop, but written not as a bishop but as a suffering human being in the presence of God. Justly famous for its remarkable candor.

2) Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis (1418)

A very popular book in Korea, it is written for religious but everyone can benefit from the ideal that it presents of the spiritual life.

3) Pensees of Blaise Pascal (1670)

Reflections on the sad state of humanity without God, and on the state of happiness with God, using logic to support his reflections. Published after the death of the French philosopher and mathematician.

4) The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence. (1693)

Written by a brother of the discalced Carmelites, who lived a very simple life as a cook and repairer of shoes, this book contains his spiritual maxims and his letters, centering around the existence of God and what it meant to him in his daily life.

5) Diary of a Country Priest George Bernanos (1936)

Considered a masterpiece in the Catholic culture of the 20th century, it tells the story of a sickly priest in his first parish who found it difficult to mix with his people--people closed in on themselves and not disposed to his way of life or he to theirs--and about the change in his life in the anti-religious and atheistic France of that time.

6) Keys to the Kingdom by A.J.Cronin (1941)

A popular novel about the life of a Scottish missionary in China and the difficulties he was able to surmount. Cronin presents an ideal human by describing the daily life of a remarkable priest as he interacts with his people.

7) Seven Story Mountain by Thomas Merton (1948)

The autobiography of Thomas Merton, who writes of his struggles and temptations before he entered the Trappist monastery. Focuses primarily on his inner life and the way God led him to himself.

8) Silence by Shusaku Endo (1966)

A novel about the persecution in Japan of Catholics and the response of one Catholic to the silence of God. It tells the story of a priest who goes to Japan to find out what happened to one of the Jesuits who had apostatized, and his struggles to understand that decision.

9) Way to God by Anthony de Mello (1978)

Drawing on Scripture and different traditions, De Mello has created 47 exercises to improve contemplation. It is an effort to lead busy people of our age to a new way of experiencing the presence of God.

10) Why become a Christian by Hans Kung. (1985)

Tells us what a Christian is, making us reflect on the central mark of a true Christian. How does one live who wants to be a true Christian? Kung says, be a true person.

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