For the faithful, the doubtful, and the searchers of every age, these letters convey the power of the Catholic faith that is at once personal and universal, timely and eternal.
In this remarkable exploration of the Catholic world, prominent Catholic author and papal biographer George Weigel offers a luminous collection of letters to young Catholics, not-so-young Catholics, and curious souls who wonder what it means to be Catholic today.
Weigel takes readers on an epistolary tour of Catholic landmarks -- from Chartres Cathedral to St. Mary's Church in Greenville, South Carolina; from the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem to G.K. Chesterton's favorite pub in Oxford; and from the grave of a modern martyr in Warsaw to the Sistine Chapel.
Weaving together insights from history, literature, theology, and music, Weigel illuminates the beliefs that give Catholicism its distinctive texture and explores the theological importance of grace, prayer, vocation, sin and forgiveness, suffering, and -- most importantly -- love. To a world that sometimes seems closed and claustrophobic, he suggests, Christian humanism offers a world with windows and doors -- and a skylight.
In this spiritual memoir-cum-travelogue, Weigel writes with the same beauty and clarity that characterized his biography of Pope John Paul II, Witness to Hope, merging reportage with personal insights about Catholicism. He takes readers on a journey from Maryland to Europe and Israel, visiting sites that are whimsical (G.K. Chesterton's favorite pub) as well as those that are renowned as holy (the Dormition Abbey in Jerusalem, St. Peter's Cathedral in Rome). Writing in a conversational, epistolary form aimed at young Catholics, Weigel offers a book that simultaneously is, and is not, your grandmother's catechism: he affirms the core doctrines of the Church, but he does so in a way that is refreshingly contemporary and--because of his emphasis on Church sites around the world--catholic as well as Catholic. Weigel opens the book with an entertaining description of his childhood in the Catholic stronghold of Baltimore, and invites young readers to entertain the idea that Catholicism is not just a creed but an"optic," a rooted way of viewing the world. In the rest of the book, he introduces that world and offers them new lenses with which to understand it. This book is simply first-rate.