Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Holy reading

From the earliest days of the Church it has been recommended that Christians should study the lives of the holy men and women who have gone before them. It is natural that that should be so. We who long to be saints, and have been created that we might also be saints in heaven, have much to learn by looking to the example of those who have run the race and at the finish won the crown of everlasting glory.

But where to look for such holy reading? Well one source is 'Butler's lives of the Fathers, Martyrs, and other Saints.' It has an entry for everyday of the year, which makes it easy to incorporate into your routine. I was lucky enough to pick up a copy at a book fair recently and now I keep it by my bedside for that little bit of reading that takes place between the brushing of the teeth and the turning off of the light. I paid €65 for mine, which I regard as good value for five hardback, 90 year-old volumes in near perfect condition - particularly when one considers that one could easily spend as much or more on a few modern paperbacks, especially theological ones.

It isn't too difficult to find hard copies of this book for sale online; in fact there seems to be a wide variety of versions available. But if you're short of the shekels - and who isn't these days - or would like to check it out before laying out any cash, there is a pdf version available free online HERE. I will warn that it does seem to take a while to down load - perhaps not surprising for such a large work. But as you are getting a work that is a real treasure for free, I would suggest it is well worth the wait (and if you prefer just to go to each daily reading without downloading the whole book, you can go here).

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