Monday, May 20, 2013

Book Review: St. Monica and the Power of Persistent Prayer

For a number of years I've been drawn to St. Monica.  Her example of persistent prayer for the conversion of her husband and her son is one that I find inspiring.  Let's face it, it's frustrating to pray for something continually and come to grips with the reality that God's timeline does not always match up with yours.  St. Monica gets that and because of that I look to her as an example of patience in persistent prayer.

As I read through Mike Aquilina and Mark W. Sullivan's St. Monica and the Power of Persistent Prayer I found myself coming to a better understanding of St. Monica and how to apply her example to my own circumstances.  Drawing on accounts of St. Monica from the writings of her son, St. Augustine we learn that her persistence in prayer wasn't just a matter of patience and a determined spirit.  Readers will find that her example goes much deeper than that.  It's acceptance of God's will, trust in God, and a whole host of other virtues that transformed St. Monica as she relentlessly prayed for her wayward son's conversion.

If you are unfamiliar with St. Augustine, you will find that you come to know him better through this book.  If you are familiar with this great saint, then you will likely recognize many of the excerpts from his writings about his sainted mother.

Interwoven with the story of St. Monica are plenty of anecdotal stories about the mother and grandmother of the authors of this book.  I really enjoyed the stories about Nan and how they related to St. Monica.  It showed a modern day look at the application of the same strengths and virtues exhibited by St. Monica by the matriarch of the authors' family.

If you find yourself in the situation of praying for the conversion of a spouse or a wayward child, you'll likely find encouragement in the pages of this book and a powerful intercessor who knows well what it's like to be on the praying end of such an intention.

This review was written as part of the Catholic book reviewer program from The Catholic Company. Visit The Catholic Company to find more information on St. Monica and the Persistent Power of Prayer. The Catholic Company is the best resource for all your seasonal needs such as First Communion gifts as well as ideas and gifts for the special papal Year of Faith.


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