The Power of Silence
Publisher: Ignatius Press
Publication Date: 2017-04-15
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Silence is the indispensable doorway to the divine, explains the cardinal in this profound conversation with Nicolas Diat. Within the hushed and hallowed walls of the La Grande Chartreux, the famous Carthusian monastery in the French Alps, Cardinal Sarah addresses the following questions: Can those who do not know silence ever attain truth, beauty, or love? Do not wisdom, artistic vision, and devotion spring from silence, where the voice of God is heard in the depths of the human heart?
After the international success of God or Nothing, Cardinal Sarah seeks to restore to silence its place of honor and importance. "Silence is more important than any other human work," he says, "for it expresses God. The true revolution comes from silence; it leads us toward God and others so as to place ourselves humbly and generously at their service."
"This book shows Cardinal Sarah to be one of the most spiritually alert churchmen of our time."
--Bishop Robert Barron, Creator and Host,Catholicism film series
Cardinal Robert Sarah's profound exploration of the silence in which we hear the still, quiet voice of God, and thus come to know the truth about ourselves, is a powerful challenge to the cacophony of our times and a summons to a more Gospel-centered way of life."
--George Weigel, Distinguished Senior Fellow and William E. Simon Chair in Catholic Studies, Ethics and Public Policy Center
"Cardinal Sarah provides an incomparable help to contemporary man, so that he may practice the silence which is necessary to hear the voice of God and so to know himself and the world in their deepest truth, beauty, and goodness."
--Cardinal Raymond Burke, Author, Hope for the World
"Noise, as C.S. Lewis'devil Screwtape famously said, is the music of hell. Cardinal Sarah offers us a richly engaging, elegantly written reflection on the importance of recovering silence in our own lives, and through silence, rediscovering the presence of God, the beauty of creation, and the nature of our mission as disciples."
--Most Rev. Charles Chaput, Archbishop of Philadelphia
"Cardinal Robert Sarah has once again powerfully spoken a message desperately needing to be heard in our contemporary society. I pray that many will read this treasure chest of wisdom."
--Most Rev. Salvatore Cordileone, Archbishop of San Francisco
"It is impossible to exaggerate the importance of this profound, uniquely beautiful book."
--Michael D. O Brien, Author, Father Elijah: An Apocalypse
Robert Sarah is a Guinean Cardinal prelate of the Catholic Church. A Cardinal since November 2010, he was appointed as prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments by Pope Francis on 23 November 2014. He previously served as secretary of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples and president of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum.
In 2016, Sarah called for priests to face the altar ad orientem (in the same direction as the congregation) while celebrating Mass, despite the fact that versus populum (facing the congregation) had become the prevailing practice following recommended changes to the liturgy made by the Second Vatican Council. The move was seen by some media commentators as a direct challenge to Pope Francis.
An opponent of same-sex marriage, he has denounced the "Western homosexual and abortion ideologies", personally suggesting that both are of "demonic origin" and comparing them to Nazism and Islamic terrorism. He has also been outspoken on the persecution of Christians under radical Islam.
This book is easy to read, but less easy to live and apply. It is a conversation drawn from personal experience and draws from church history. The many sources referenced attest to the longstanding tradition of silence. As such it will serve more as a jumping off point. It will help readers begin to understand, or to grow in their understanding of the importance and need for silence.
I loved reading this book, and particularly loved the commends and feedback from others in the book club. I have recommended this book to friends both Catholic and evangelical. And I recommend it to you.