Asking the Fathers

One book within four crates of book generously given to The Hermitage library by an old friend:
Aelred Squires “Asking the Fathers” [London, SPCK Publishing, 1977, 1993, reprint 2010]
Asking the Fathers
“Since its first publication in 1973 “Asking the Fathers” has been reissued twice as it is generally regarded as the best introduction to the Christian spiritual life. A member of the Dominican Order at the time, Aelred Squire in this classic study of the Christian spiritual masters, makes these early Fathers of the Church accessible to us today. By means of Squire’s wide-ranging perspectives, they speak to us now, even after many centuries, with an immediacy that is both startling and challenging. Not only the desert fathers but later exponents of the Christian spiritual life are examined, thus bringing the early writers up-to-date with relevant references drawn from literature and philosophy. He thus emphasises the unbroken tradition of Christian spirituality. As the author himself says: this is not a book for scholars but for those “searching for a little light on many dark matters.””

See also: Aelred Squire “Fathers Talking: An Anthology” (Cistercian Studies) [Cistercian Publications Inc, 1987]

“Aelred Squire died at New Camaldoli Hermitage, Big Sur, California, on May 1, 1997. Born in London on December 6, 1920, baptized in the Church of England, he was received into the Roman Catholic Church at Oxford in 1943 by Fr Conrad Pepler. He was accepted as a postulant at Prinknash Abbey, expecting to join as soon as the war was over. In the event, he joined the Dominicans in 1946, was ordained in 1952, and, apart from a brief spell at the preparatory school then run by the Order in Monmouthshire, taught at Blackfriars, Oxford, until 1965. He moved to Belgium to live as a hermit, returned to London to teach at the study centre conducted by the Dominican Sisters in Portobello Road, migrated to Norway in 1972 to serve as a mission priest at Lillehammer, finally yielded to monasticism in 1980, first with the Benedictines at Christ in the Desert, New Mexico, transferring his vows from the Dominicans in 1982, and at last, from December 1983, with the Camaldolese Benedictines at Big Sur…..with “Aelred of Rievaulx: A Study” (1969); “Asking the Fathers” (1973), a fine introduction to patristic spirituality and theology; “Summer in the Seed” (1980), a somewhat idiosyncratic reflection on the cultural situation of Catholicism after Vatican II; and “Fathers Talking” (1986), a popular anthology of patristic texts, he has left a considerable theological legacy.”


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