Silence and Honey Cakes – The Wisdom of the Desert by Rowan Williams
In Silence and Honey Cakes, Rowan Williams returns to the desert fathers and mothers of the fourth and fifth centuries, revealing a spirituality that resonates strongly with aspects of the modern spiritual search. Drawing on their stories and sayings, he reflects on questions such as:
An introduction to the sayings, lives and stories of early Christian women.
"Written in clear, heartfelt language, this book does two things beautifully. It revives lost memories of women leaders in the early evolution of Christian spirituality, thus filling in one more missing piece of women's history. And it calls the reader to a path of spirituality sorely needed in today's clamorous world: slow down, be quiet, listen for the voice of God deep within your heart. The book's attractiveness is enhanced by a time line, ordination rite, glossary and calendar of feasts in addition to notes and bibliography. Altogether an appealing contribution."
At the age of 44, after a prominent career as a Catholic activist, Carlo Carretto was summoned by a voice that said: 'Leave everything, come with me into the desert. I don't want your action any longer, I want your prayer, your love.' Carretto responded by leaving for North Africa, where he joined the Little Brothers of Jesus and embraced the example of Charles de Foucauld.
Among the fruits of Brother Carlo's response was Letters from the Desert, the first and most popular of his many books. Its life affirming message has inspired countless readers in a dozen languages. Simply, it reminds us that in the evening of our lives we will be judged by love.
One of the most pressing issues in today's church is encouraging people to become true and effective disciples of Jesus Christ. If, in simple terms, discipleship is about connecting more deeply with God and connecting God with the whole of life, Simon Reed argues, we're looking at a life-long process for which we require long-term skills rather than short-term courses. The Celtic and Desert Christians, drawing on Old and New Testament practices, taught and modelled how to do this through the practice of living by a Way of Life. By drawing together today's need for disciples and Celtic Christianity, Followers of the Way inspires authentic Christian discipleship for the contemporary world.
The words flee, be silent and pray summarise the spirituality of the desert. They indicate the three ways of preventing the world from shaping us in its image and are thus the three ways to life in the Spirit.' How can Christians live as God wants in today's world? Henri Nouwen seeks his answer from an unlikely source - the example of the fifth-century Egyptian Desert Fathers and Mothers. Their experience in the desert taught them that true Christian living in possible only if we find a place in our lives for solitude, silence and prayer. The Way of the Heart in a perfect book for prayerful meditation. Compassionate yet challenging, it will enable us not only to appreciate the teaching of the Desert Fathers and Mothers, but to apply it to our daily lives.