Archives For The Benedict Option

“Prayer is not asking. Prayer is putting oneself in the hands of God, at His disposition, and listening to His voice in the depth of our hearts.” Mother Teresa

Some Christian traditions–or just individual Christians–emphasize prayer and contemplation along with Christian action. Others emphasize action along with prayer and contemplation.

In no tradition–and I would hope, with no individual Christian–is either mode of expressing our faith exclusive. It’s a matter of emphasis.

I was struck by this point while reading Rod Dreher’s The Benedict Option. In the chapter about the monks of Norcia, Dreher talks about how their days are structured around prayer, then work. Continue Reading…

“[T]he Benedict Option is a call to undertaking the long and patient work of reclaiming the real world from the artifice, alienation, and atomization of modern life. It is a way of seeing the world and of living in the world that undermines modernity’s big lie: that humans are nothing more than ghosts in a machine, and we are free to adjust the settings in any way we like.” Rod Dreher, The Benedict Option: A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation (236).

If you’re a Christian, don’t read this book unless you are truly willing to face the deep realities that Rod Dreher presents within its pages.

But if you are a Christian, you really should read this book.

It will move you to change your life.

And you will find it is not the same book some critics have described.

The Benedict Option is not a call for the faithful to cloister ourselves in a monastery or don white robes and sit on a mountaintop awaiting the Apocalypse.

Dreher calls us to a more focused faith walk, to “be the church, without compromise, no matter what it costs” (3, emphasis Dreher’s).

He calls us to a deeper prayer life. A life steeped in community with other faithful Christians. A life that looks very different from the lives many of us lead–pursuit of consumerism and busy-ness with splashes of church sprinkled between. Continue Reading…

In a nutshell, when we concentrate on teaching the deep truths of our faith rather than superficialities, that effort will, for example, lead us back to the early saints who risked their own lives caring for plague victims.

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