Beginning to Pray
A new, attractive edition of this modern spiritual classic.
In his work, Beginning to Pray, Anthony Bloom reflects on the experience of the Absence of God. Not only do ordinary Christians struggle with this, but even ministers of the Gospel, even priests are not exempt from this haunting experience of faith. This experience as suffered in the priesthood is explored in fiction in, among many other works, Endo Shusako’s Silence, Miguel de Unamuno’s St. Emmanuel the Good, Martyr, and Georges Bernanos’s Diary of a Country Priest. In the world of non-fiction, this same experience is a striking feature of Jean Bernard’s autobiographical reflections in Priestblock 25487: A memoir of Dachua and Cardinal Nguyen van Thuan thoughts about his own imprisonment in Testimony of Hope. Anthony Bloom’s insights into prayer and the absence of God provide a reference point for interpreting and dealing with what these authors describe as part of the experience of priests - and this is very consistent with the Carmelite Spiritual tradition.