Books

May the call of God resound in us

José Miguel Granados recommends the book "Take over", by Joseph Grifone.

José Miguel Granados-January 31, 2021-Reading time: 2 minutes

Take up the baton. Models of holiness for a new evangelization.

Joseph Grifone

Ediciones Cristiandad, Madrid 2020

The author, a university professor of mathematics, has published several books on spirituality and anthropology. As Cardinal Robert Sarah writes in the Preface, "the purpose of this book is to make God's call resound in our hearts." To this end, it "presents the central themes of the new evangelization not in a theoretical and abstract way, but precisely through the example and lives of some saints." And he offers profiles of these saints that can be of particular relevance for Christians of our time.

It begins with the figure of our Father Abraham. It situates us in his time and in his peculiar psychology. He highlights not only his great human qualities, but also his unwavering fidelity to God's call. He then delves into the faith of the Mother of God, who knew how to remain in the light throughout the darkness of her earthly pilgrimage and, especially, in the dark night at the cross of her Son. Of St. Paul, we can highlight his sweeping evangelizing adventure. Of St. Irenaeus of Lyons, his keen discernment in finding the way between tradition and progress in the development of the revealed message. In St. Augustine, he considers the sincerity of his search for truth until his conversion to Christ. In St. Thomas Aquinas, he underlines the splendid synthesis between faith and reason achieved by the great doctor of the Church.

He also approaches us to the personality of St. Thomas More, characterized by coherence in obeying the voice of conscience in the face of violent tyrannical imposition. In dealing with St. Teresa of Jesus, he delves into her life of prayer as an essential path for the efficacy of the believer's action. He also introduces us to the Jewish convert and Carmelite philosopher, St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, outstanding not only for her integrity until her martyrdom, but also for the intelligent dialogue she knew how to carry out in order to favor the encounter of faith with important cultural currents of contemporary thought.

He also approaches the impressive saint of charity, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, who has fascinated humanity with her dedication to the poorest for the love of Jesus, as well as for her audacity in proclaiming the sacred value of every human life. In this sense, it includes an outstanding scientist and servant of the sick, still in the process of being declared a saint: the geneticist researcher Jerôme Lejeune, who had the courage to defend the inviolable dignity of the human being in the embryonic phase or suffering from hereditary pathologies. Finally, by way of a synthesis, it echoes the message proclaimed and lived by St. Josemaría on the call to holiness in ordinary work, as a specific sphere of apostolate for all the baptized who live in the midst of the world.

In short, the book is a journey through the history of great souls from very different eras, which helps to illuminate the meaning of the divine call to collaborate in the extension of the Kingdom of God on earth; its reading constitutes a stimulating invitation to every believer to feel a protagonist in the evangelizing task.

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