HM-3 “A Handmaid of the Lord”: the Life and Legacy of Adrienne von Speyr with Dr. Adrian Walker

HM-3 “A Handmaid of the Lord”: the Life and Legacy of Adrienne von Speyr with Dr. Adrian Walker from Discerning Hearts on Vimeo.

Adrian-WalkerEpisode 3 – “A Handmaid of the Lord – The Assent” – “A Handmaid of the Lord”: The life and legacy of Adrienne von Speyr with Dr. Adrian Walker, Ph.D.

With Dr. Adrian Walker, we reflect on various aspects of Adrienne’s insight on the Mother of God as described in her book “A Handmaid of the Lord.” In part one of our conversation on the work, Dr. Walker reflects on the meaning of “The Assent.”   We also explore  “The Finding in the Temple” and “The Renunciation”  as events described by Adrienne in the book that helps deepen our appreciation and understanding of the mystery of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

As a sheaf of grain is tied together in the middle and spreads out at either end, so Mary’s life is bound together by her assent. From this assent her life receives its meaning and form and unfolds toward past and future. This single, all-encompassing act accompanies her at every moment of her existence, illuminates every turning point of her life, bestows upon every situation its own particular meaning and in all situations gives Mary herself the grace of renewed understanding. Her assent gives full meaning to every breath, every movement, every prayer of the Mother of God. This is the nature of an assent: it binds the one who gives it, yet it allows him complete freedom in shaping its expression. He fills his assent with his personality, giving it its weight and unique coloring. But he himself is also molded, liberated and fulfilled by his assent. All freedom develops through surrender and through renunciation of liberty. And from this freedom within commitment there arises every sort of fruitfulness.

von Speyr, Adrienne (2012-03-09). Handmaid of the Lord (Kindle Locations 26-33). Ignatius Press. Kindle Edition.

adrienne_von_speyr1Adrienne von Speyr was a Swiss convert, mystic, wife, medical doctor and author of over 60 books on spirituality and theology. She’s inspired countless souls around the world to deepen their mission of prayer and compassion. She entered the Catholic Church under the direction of the great theologian, Hans Urs von Balthasar. In the years that would follow, they would co-found the secular institute, the Community of St. John.

Adrian Walker is an editor of the journal Communio, an International Catholic Review, who received his doctorate in philosophy from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. Dr. Walker has served as a translator for the English edition of Pope Benedict XVI’s, ” Jesus of Nazareth,” as well as numerous other theological works, including those of Hans Urs von Balthasar and Adrienne von Speyr.

Our series recorded at “Casa Balthasar,” a house of discernment for men located in Rome, Italy. The Casa was founded in 1990 by a group of friends and is directed by Rev. Jacques Servais, S.J.; Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI) has been closely associated with the Casa Balthasar from the very beginning as its Cardinal Protector.

 Many of Adrienne von Speyr’s books can found through Ignatius Press

 

IP#163 Vivian Dudro – Evelyn Waugh’s “Edmund Campion” on Inside the Pages

IP#281 Vivian Dudro - Meriol Trevor's "Shadows and Images" on Inside the Pages 1
Vivian Dudro

I love the writing of Evelyn Waugh…his prose are some of the best of our time, if not of all time.  And when that talent is used to pen a biography of the heroic English martyr, Edmund Campion, a tremendous blessing has been given to all who glean it’s pages.  What a story…what a life.  We are joined once again by the wonderful Vivian Dudro to discuss this incredible work, as well as the life and times of this great saint.

edmundcampion-bookYou can find the book here

From the description:

evelyn-waugh
Evelyn Waugh

Evelyn Waugh presented his biography of St. Edmund Campion, the Elizabethan poet, scholar, and gentleman who became the haunted, trapped and murdered priest as “a simple, perfectly true story of heroism and holiness.”

 

But it is written with a novelist’s eye for the telling incident and with all the elegance and feeling of a master of English prose. From the years ofsuccess as an Oxford scholar, to entry into the newly founded Society of Jesus and a professorship in Prague, Campion’s life was an inexorable progress towards the doomed mission to England. There followed pursuit, betrayal, a spirited defense of loyalty to the Queen, and a horrifying martyr’s death at Tyburn.edmund-campion-220x300

IP#137 Vivian Dudro – Sigrid Undset’s “Ida Elisabeth” on Inside the Pages

IP#281 Vivian Dudro - Meriol Trevor's "Shadows and Images" on Inside the Pages 1

Vivian Dudro joins us once again to discuss Sigrid Undset, her life and her times, and some other works of this important author.

To say that Sigrid Undset is compelling would be an understatement. Catholic convert, Nobel Prize-winning Norwegian novelist , her works invoke the poignancy of the fall and the hope that is found in the act of redemptive suffering. “Ida Elisabeth” is a tremendous work. Great literature helps us practice the virtues. We may never encounter the situations the characters do, but watching how they navigate through the emotions and morals of the moments, help us to exercise our own virtues and responses to the underlying sin that propels the characters forward…and helps us to avoid recognize in some way the traps laid before us.

 

sigrid-undsetida-elisabethYou can find the book here

“Undset is a realist in the truest sense of the word. She sees the real world in which people face the bitter consequences of selfish choices and in which suffering is unavoidable and yet potentially redemptive. In her acclaimed historical fiction, Undset shows us that the acceptance of suffering is the beginning of wisdom and also, paradoxically, the path to peace and lasting joy.”
– Joseph Pearce, Author, The Quest for Shakespeare

GWML#16 Charles Dickens and “A Tale of Two Cities” – Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce – Discerning Hearts

GWML#11 William Shakespeare (Merchant of Venice and King Lear) - Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce - Discerning Hearts 2
In this exciting novel set during the French Revolution, Charles Dickens expresses sympathy for the downtrodden poor and their outrage at the self-indulgent aristocracy. But Dickens is no friend of the vengeful mob that storms the Bastille and cheers the guillotine. As with all of his stories, his passion is for the unforgettable and unrepeatable individuals he creates.

Dickens1The sorrows of the suffering masses, their demands for justice, and the indiscriminate fury they unleash take flesh in Madame Defarge, while the self-sacrifice that is the truest means of atonement and rebirth manifests in the unlikely hero Sydney Carton. In A Tale of Two Cities, humanity does not show its best side in the mean streets of Paris or even London, but in the intimate circle of loyal friends that gathers around the honorable Doctor Manette and his lovely daughter, Lucie.

tale-of-two-cities-2Based on the Ignatius Critical Edition, this series examines, from the Judeo-Christian perspective, the life, the times, and influence of authors of great works in literature .


Joseph Pearce is currently the Writer-in-Residence and Visiting Fellow at Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in Merrimack, New Hampshire. He is also Visiting Scholar at Mount Royal Academy in Sunapee, New Hampshire. He is also Visiting Scholar at Mount Royal Academy in Sunapee, New Hampshire. He is  co-editor of the Saint Austin Review (or StAR), an international review of Christian culture, literature, and ideas published in England (Family Publications) and the United States (Sapientia Press). He is also the author of many books, including literary biographies of Solzhenitsyn, J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, G. K. Chesterton, and Oscar Wilde.

To learn more about the authors and titles available in the Ignatius Critical Editions

IP#150 Vivian Dudro – Jose Luis Olaizola’s “Fire of Love” on Inside the Pages

IP#281 Vivian Dudro - Meriol Trevor's "Shadows and Images" on Inside the Pages 1
Vivian Dudro

What a delight to be joined once again by Vivian Dudro to discuss the work of Spanish novelist Jose Luis Olaizola and his book “Fire of Love: A Historical Novel on the Life St. John of the Cross”!  Olaizola is an award-winning Spanish writer, who is known for his acclaimed works on great historical figures such as El Cid, Hernan Cortes, Bartolome de las Casas, and Patricio Escobar.  In this book, he richly offers the life of the the great Spanish mystical doctor of the Church, St. John of the Cross.

Jose Luis Olaizola
Jose Luis Olaizola

Fire-of-love-195x300

You can find the book here

This historical novel paints a striking portrait of one of the most revered saints in history, in a landscape that makes the life and times of John of the Cross relevant to our own age. Here is an extraordinary adventure that explores the thorny challenges that every soul must face: avoiding the trappings of this world that lead to darkness, and embracing the radiance of the fire of Divine Love. Having performed the life of this great saint as an actor, I found Jose Luis Olaizola’s portrayal very true to the passion and dramatic intensity of this great mystic. Fire of Love rekindled in me the fire ignited by Saint John of the Cross in his poetic plea, ‘Love Him intensely, as He deserves to be loved.’ May all who read this literary work examine their own souls profoundly, in order to have the greatest of all adventures – finding God Himself. —Leonardo Defilippis, Film Actor & Director, John of the Cross

GWML#6 Jonathan Swift and “Gulliver’s Travels” – Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce – Discerning Hearts

Episode 6- Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce – Jonathan SwiftGWML#11  William Shakespeare (Merchant of Venice and King Lear) - Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce - Discerning Hearts 2

Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift is one of the greatest satirical works ever written. Through the misadventures of Lemuel Gulliver, his hopelessly “modern” protagonist, Swift exposes many of the follies of the English Enlightenment, from its worship of science to its neglect of traditional philosophy and theology. Swift’s satire on the threats posed by the Enlightenment and the embryonic spirit of secular fundamentalism makes Gulliver’s Travels priceless reading for today’s defenders of tradition.Jonathan-Swift

Based on the Ignatius Critical Edition, this series examines, from the Judeo-Christian perspective, the life,the times, and influence of authors of great works in literature .

 

Joseph Pearce is currently the Writer-in-Residence and Visiting Fellow at Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in Merrimack, New Hampshire. He is also Visiting Scholar at Mount Royal Academy in Sunapee, New Hampshire. He is also Visiting Scholar at Mount Royal Academy in Sunapee, New Hampshire. He is  co-editor of the Saint Austin Review (or StAR), an international review of Christian culture, literature, and ideas published in England (Family Publications) and the United States (Sapientia Press). He is also the author of many books, including literary biographies of Solzhenitsyn, J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, G. K. Chesterton, and Oscar Wilde.

Gullivers-TravelsTo learn more about the authors and titles available in the Ignatius Critical Editions

GWML#8 Jane Austen “Pride & Prejuidice” and “Mansfield Park” – Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce

Episode 8 – Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce – Jane AustenGWML#11 William Shakespeare (Merchant of Venice and King Lear) - Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce - Discerning Hearts 2

Jane Austen is arguably the finest female novelist who ever lived and Pride and Prejudice is arguably the finest, and is certainly the most popular, of her novels. An undoubted classic of world literature, its profound Christian morality is all too often missed or willfully overlooked by today’s (post)modern critics.

jane-austen-1In all things, Jane Austen was a woman of faith. Perhaps nowhere is this more apparent than in Mansfield Park, her most neglected, abused, and misunderstood novel. Like Austen’s other novels, it can be fully appreciated only when illuminated by the virtuous life and Christian beliefs of the author herself.

Jane Austen saw the follies and foibles of human nature, and the frictions and fidelities of family life, with an incisive eye that penetrates to the very heart of the human condition.

mansfield-parkpride-and-prejudice-2Based on the Ignatius Critical Edition, this series examines, from the Judeo-Christian perspective, the life, the times, and influence of authors of great works in literature .

Joseph Pearce is currently the Writer-in-Residence and Visiting Fellow at Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in Merrimack, New Hampshire. He is also Visiting Scholar at Mount Royal Academy in Sunapee, New Hampshire. He is also Visiting Scholar at Mount Royal Academy in Sunapee, New Hampshire. He is  co-editor of the Saint Austin Review (or StAR), an international review of Christian culture, literature, and ideas published in England (Family Publications) and the United States (Sapientia Press). He is also the author of many books, including literary biographies of Solzhenitsyn, J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, G. K. Chesterton, and Oscar Wilde.

To learn more about the authors and titles available in the Ignatius Critical Editions

IP#136 Vivian Dudro – Gertrude von le Forte’s “The Song at the Scaffold” on Inside the Pages

IP#281 Vivian Dudro - Meriol Trevor's "Shadows and Images" on Inside the Pages 1
Vivian Dudro

“The Song at the Scaffold” by Gertrude von le Forte’s is one of the best novella’s…ever!   Vivian Dudro, writer and editor at Igantius Press, engages in a wonderful conversation about the work of German author Gertrude von le Forte who was a writer of novels, poems, and essays.  A convert  to Catholicism in 1926, most of  von le Forte’s work came after her conversion. In 1952 she won the Gottfried-Keller Prize, an esteemed Swiss literary award.

Set during the French Revolution, this classic novella is based on the true story of the Carmelite nuns of Compiègne, who offered their lives for the preservation of the Church in France. The Song at the Scaffold was the original inspiration for the opera Dialogues of the Carmelites written by Francis Poulenc, which premiered in 1957. The opera was based on a libretto with this same title written by Georges Bernanos.

Gertrude von le Forte
Gertrude von le Forte

As Vivian points out in our discussion, von le Forte’s work is as relevant today as it was in the last century. In the course of our conversation, we discuss the influence of the Carmelite tradition and it’s influence on Edith Stein (St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross) and Bl. John Paul II, as well the role of redemptive suffering in the life of the Christian.

A novella in it’s truest sense, this book contains as much meaning as any tome made up 10x the pages.  A NOT TO BE MISSED READ.

You can find it at Ignatius.com

One of the great Christian classics of all time. —Michael O’Brien, Author, Father Elijah

A poignant reminder that, for the Christian, fearlessness lies on the far side of Gethsemane and the Cross. —George Weigel, Author, Witness to Hope

GWML#13 Bram Stoker and “Dracula” – Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce – Discerning Hearts

Episode 13 – Bram Stoker and “Dracula”  on Great Works in Western Literature with Joseph Pearce Joseph-Pearce-1

When solicitor’s clerk Jonathan Harker travels to Transylvania on business to meet a mysterious Romanian count named Dracula, he little expects the horrors this strange meeting will unleash. Thus Bram Stoker’s 1897 novel of blood and passion begins, rapidly accelerating from Harker’s nightmarish experiences in Castle Dracula to a full-fledged vampiric assault on late-Victorian London itself. The story, narrated through a collection of Bram-Stokerdocuments-primarily journal entries and letters-chronicles the desperate efforts of a band of gentlemen to protect the virtue of their ladies and lay to rest the ancient threat once and for all.

Often vacillating wildly between the terrible and the comic, Dracula at the same time brings to life a host of compelling themes: tensions between antiquity and modernity; the powers and limitations of technology; the critical importance of feminine virtue; the difference between superstition and religion; the nature of evil; and, perhaps most compellingly, the complex relationship between ancient faith and scientific enlightenment. More vivid than any of its varied film adaptations, and over a century after its first publication, Dracula still retains its sharp bite.

Based on the Ignatius Critical Edition, this series examines, from the Judeo-Christian perspective, the life,the times, and influence of authors of great works in literature .

Joseph Pearce  is currently the Writer-in-Residence and Visiting Fellow at Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in Merrimack, New DraculaHampshire. He is also Visiting Scholar at Mount Royal Academy in Sunapee, New Hampshire. He is also Visiting Scholar at Mount Royal Academy in Sunapee, New Hampshire. , as well as co-editor of the Saint Austin Review (or StAR), an international review of Christian culture, literature, and ideas published in England (Family Publications) and the United States (Sapientia Press). He is also the author of many books, including literary biographies of Solzhenitsyn, J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, G. K. Chesterton, and Oscar Wilde.

To learn more about the authors and titles available in the Ignatius Critical Editions

IP#281 Vivian Dudro – Meriol Trevor’s “Shadows and Images” on Inside the Pages

Vivian Dudro
Vivian Dudro

It is with great delight to once again have a conversation with Vivian Dudro about another standout Catholic author.  This time we discuss the prolific Meriol Trevor and her work of historical fiction entitled “Shadows and Images”.  Trevor, who had already authored a two part biography of John Henry Cardinal Newman, sets him into this engaging story which spans many years during which pivotal historical influences, such as the Industrial Revolution and the Oxford Movement, are shaping Victorian England.  An enjoyable read…highly recommended!

Meriol-Trevor
Meriol Trevor

Meriol Trevor (15 April 1919 – 12 January 2000) was one of the most prolific Roman Catholic women writers of the twentieth century.  In 1946 she went to Italy as a relief worker with UNRRA and lived for nearly a year in the Abruzzi. In Italy Trevor was exposed to Catholic culture. Previously an agnostic humanist, she was received into the Roman Catholic Church at Oxford in 1950. Her two-volume biography of John Henry Newman was awarded the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for Biography in 1962. She also wrote biographies of Pope John XXIII, Philip Neri, and James II, as well as many historical novels and children’s stories and a book of poetry. In 1967 she was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. An annual lecture series in her honour was begun in 2000 in her home town of Bath. – wikipedia

Shadows-and-ImagesYou can find the book here

From the book description:

This is the story of a Protestant young woman and her journey to the Roman Catholic Church. The fascinating novel is set in nineteenth-century England-a time when Catholicism was regarded with suspicion and prejudice against Catholics was commonplace. Leaving her sheltered life in the countryside, young Clem becomes acquainted with the fascinating ideas and people of Oxford-including a brilliant young clergyman, John Henry Newman. But when her relationship to a Roman Catholic man with a colorful reputation leads to an Italian elopement that is more innocent than it appears, the scandal drives a wedge between Clem and the upright Anglican circle of friends and family she left behind. Woven into the story of Clem and Augustine, their courtship and marriage, and Clem’s conversion, is the vital, influential, and holy Newman, as seen through the eyes of friends.

Many important events, personages, and ideas in the life of Newman appear in the story-his reasons for becoming a Roman Catholic, his differences with Cardinal Manning, his work in the Birmingham Oratory, and his being made a cardinal by Pope Leo XIII. The author, a renowned biographer of Newman, used Newman’s actual correspondence as the basis for his parts in the dialogue.