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World's Great Catholic Literature

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The World's Great Catholic Literature (354 Kb PDF File)

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George N. Schuster, editor
 
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Download the Study Guide to Accompany
The World's Great Catholic Literature (354 Kb PDF File)

To view and print the study guide you will need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader

In the desert of modern culture, a Catholic oasis

Catholics: how many of your classics do you know? Now, one big volume introduces you to them all. Traditional Catholics busy with life and the struggle in the Church often neglect good reading. Sometimes, they're less acquainted with their Catholic heritage than with the very enemies of the Church who concern them.

It wasn't always thus. A thriving Catholic publishing industry once produced hundreds of meaty books annually and few as good as this popular collection, first published in 1942. 208 selections from 103 different authors and classic works. Here you'll find the writings of the Church's greatest saints and martyrs, Fathers and Doctors, mystics, popes, poets, essayists, historians and novelists. You'll feast on sermons, prayers, stories, historical accounts, biographical portraits, fables, satires and more. A sampling:


Spiritual and theological classics:

  • St. Thomas Aquinas on the Just War

  • Pascal's famous "Wager"

  • St. Catherine of Siena's stern letter to the Pope

  • Fr. Damian on living among lepers

  • St. Thomas More on the foundations of faith

  • Savonarola's Sermon Against Tyrants

  • St. Jerome on the priestly ideal

  • G.K. Chesterton on his conversion

  • St. Augustine on his mother, St. Monica

Generous excerpts from timeless works:

  • The Imitation of Christ

  • The Rule of St. Benedict

  • The Cloud of Unknowing

  • The Divine Comedy

  • The Rule of St. Francis

  • Douay-Rheims Bible

  • Liber Exemplorum (medieval source-book for sermons)

First-hand glimpses of great people, ideas and events:

  • The last day of St. Thomas More (told by his son-in-law)

  • Louis Pasteur's views on science

  • Michelangelo's views on the purpose of art

  • The Trial of St. Joan of Arc (from the actual transcript)

Partial listing of other greats you'll meet:
  • St. Francis de Sales
  • Juliana of Norwich
  • Dante
  • Tertullian
  • St. Bernard
  • Orestes Brownson
  • Leo XIII
  • Lord Acton
  • Cervantes
  • St. Ignatius Loyola
  • John Henry Newman
  • Pius XI
  • Petrarch
  • Cardinal James Gibbons
  • St. Teresa of Avila
  • St. Justin Martyr
  • Sir Thomas Malory
  • The Venerable Bede
  • Charles Peguy
  • Erasmus
  • Castiglione
  • Benedict XV
  • Eusebius
  • St. Bonaventure
  • St. John Chrysostom
  • St. John Fisher

Works by modern novelists, poets and essayists:

  • Msgr. Robert Hugh Benson

  • Joyce Kilmer

  • Gerard Manley Hopkins

  • Francis Thompson

  • Leon Bloy

  • Wilfred Ward

  • G.K. Chesterton

You'll even find some delightful surprises from non-Catholics such as Nathaniel Hawthorne's deeply sympathetic view of Confession, and Robert Louis Stevenson's passionate defense of the "leper priest," Fr. Damian, against a heartless critic.

All selections are chosen to stand on their own, but also to encourage further reading. A detailed table of contents and complete index of authors makes for easy browsing.

Whether you're already a "well-read" Catholic or simply want to become one, this volume will afford you hours of inspiring and enjoyable reading.

Special 30-page section gives you capsule biographies of the authors, and historical background on the selections

"I long for the beasts which are made ready for me, and I pray that they may be found prompt in so far as I am concerned,. I shall even entice them into devouring me with dispatch, lest it may happen to me as it has happened to others whom they have not touched through fear. Even if they be unwilling, I will compel them to it." -St. Ignatius of Antioch


"On behalf of Christ crucified I tell you: refuse to believe the counsels of the devil, who would hinder your holy and good resolution. Be manly in my sight, and not timorous. Answer God, who calls you to hold and possess the seat of the glorious Shepherd St. Peter, whose vicar you have been. And raise the standard of the holy Cross." -St. Catherine of Siena to Pope Gregory XI


"The justice of God must be vast like His compassion." -Blaise Pascal


"Within her heart was a great need. Close at hand, within the veil of the confessional, was the relief. She flung herself down in the penitent's place; and, tremulously, passionately, with sobs, tears, and the turbulent overflow of emotion too long repressed, she poured out the dark story which had infused its poison into her innocent life." -Nathaniel Hawthorne


"The moment men cease to pull against [the Catholic Church] they feel a tug toward it. The moment they cease to shout it down they begin to listen to it with pleasure. The moment they try to be fair to it they begin to be fond of it." -G.K. Chesterton

Here is the finest introduction to Catholic culture and theology for teens and young adults.

Hardcover



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