On Prayer and Contemplation

Classic and Contemporary Texts

by Matthew Levering

This is a rich, informative, and inspiring compendium of the Christian tradition of prayer and contemplation from the earliest days of the Church to the present day. Included are selections from St. Ignatius of Antioch, Justin Martyr, St. Clement of Rome, St. Gregory of Nyssa, John Cassian, St. Augustine, St. Gregory of Sinai, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Bonaventure, St. Ignatius Loyola, St. Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross, St. Catherine of Siena, St. Julian of Norwich, Brother Lawrence, St. Francis de Sales, St. Vincent de Paul, Lancelot Andrewes, St. Elizabeth of the Trinity, St. Edith Stein, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Hans Urs von Balthasar and Pope John Paul II.

Levering has selected readings that capture how Christian saints and spiritual leaders through the ages have understood what prayer is, why we pray, and how we pray. The selections also integrate the Eastern Orthodox and Western understandings of prayer and contemplation. The book is perfect for study, meditation, and inspiration.
  • Sheed & Ward; March 2005
  • ISBN: 9781461611233
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF or secure ePub format
  • Title: On Prayer and Contemplation
  • Author: Matthew Levering (ed.)
  • Imprint: Sheed & Ward

In The Press

Sometimes prayer comes easily; sometimes it is hard work. But this collection of writings by masters of prayer from the first century to the twentieth proves that even reading about prayer can be prayerful. Real prayer always involves raising the mind and heart to God. These selections not only describe a variety of helpful methods for contemplation but they also lead by example and invite readers to enter into prayer for themselves.

About The Author

Matthew Levering is associate professor of theology at Ave Maria College. He is author of On the Priesthood, On Death and Dying, and On Marriage and Family (Rowman & Littlefield).