While socially-distancing or self-isolating, there's never been a better time to catch up on reading all the books on your to-read list. We've compiled some of our favourites, taken from book reviews published in Melbourne Catholic over the last couple of years.
1. The Heart of Perfection: How the Saints Taught me to Trade my Dream of Perfect for God’s
Colleen Carrol Campbell
Colleen Carroll Campbell, an award-winning author and former
presidential speechwriter shares stories of struggle and compares them with those of seven saints who were once
perfectionists themselves. Throughout she shows us how to pursue a new kind of perfection:
freedom in Christ.
2. Any Ordinary Day
Any Ordinary Day explores ‘what happens after the worst day of your
life’. Award-winning Australian journalist and author Leigh Sales interviews
people who have faced unimaginable tragedy, like Stuart Diver and Walter
Mikac—people whose lives have been changed irrevocably on what was otherwise
just an ordinary day.
3. Hatch Match & Dispatch: A Catholic Guide to Sacraments
Richard Leonard SJ
Written by best-selling author Richard Leonard SJ, this book expands on
the meaning of the sacraments in everyday Catholic lives by questioning why
they are so essential. He additionally explores the myriad of possibilities
they offer in providing a pathway to developing our Christian lives.
4. God through Binoculars: A Hitchhiker at a Monastery
At a very low point in her life, the author decides to ‘take her
problems to God and ask for guidance’ through a week-long silent retreat at a
monastery in Virginia. The experience, she finds, doesn’t exactly provide the
consolations or answers she is looking for, but rather sparks a series of
unexpectedly satisfying meditations on nature, love, friendship and faith.
5. Food for the Highways and Byways: Commemorating 75
years of the Missionary Sisters of Service
Missionary Sisters of Service
Food for the
Highways and Byways is a commemorative cookbook that celebrates 75
years of the Missionary Sisters of Service. It is full of recipes—35 in total
for you to try at home and contains an array of photographs showcasing the
sisters’ work over 75 years.
6. God is Good for You: A Defence of Christianity in
Greg Sheridan’s God is Good for You: A Defence of Christianity in
Troubled Times is an intellectually engaging and emotionally moving
reflection on Christian faith and its place in Western societies. In this book, Sheridan attempts to present
what he regards as the best aspects of Christianity: the reasonable elements of
what Christians believe, the benefits and virtues of Christian living, and
Christianity’s historical contribution to Western and global culture.
7. Forty Reasons Why I
am a Catholic
A great choice as a gift for someone who is curious about
the Faith or just starting to question their atheism, Forty Reasons Why I am a Catholic provides the reader with a
glimpse of universality, beauty, mystery and the adventure of Catholicism. It
offers a simplified approach to communicating the value of Catholic theological
nuances everyday people can not only digest but also see value for their own
8. Just whatever: How to
help the spiritually indifferent find beliefs that really matter
breaks down the blocks of religious indifference, offering readers a look into
the three types of indifference we encounter with those around us, and even
within ourselves to understand where they are coming from and what makes this
attitude enticing. To counter these, author Matt Nelson offers a gripping
vision for where authentic truth and authority have their place.
9. Humility rules: Saint
Benedict’s 12-step guide to genuine self-esteem
J Augustine Wetta OSB
The number of self-help books published each year is staggering.
Humility Rules is a kind of antidote, in that it
demonstrates the value in seeking the forgotten virtue of humility as a route
to true fulfillment in life. Written by Benedictine monk J Augustine Wetta, Br
Augustine engages with you as a reader with humour and offers opportunities to
partake in tasks aimed at helping the reader implement his advice.
10. 100 books to read
before the four last things: The essential guide to Catholic spiritual classics
Marie I George
Providing fewer excuses to start our own spiritual reading
program, Marie George takes the hard work out by surveying one hundred books
for her readers ranging from St
Augustine’s Confessions to Come be my light by St Teresa of Calcutta; to the work of authors such as St Teresa of Ávila and St John Vianney. Designed for
browsing, reading or referencing,100 books will
help you choose books suited to your situation and stage of spiritual