The Pain of Christ and the Sorrow of God

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by Fr. Gerald Vann

Lenten Meditations

“It is not merely penance that the Church asks of us during Lent. It is extra prayer.”

Some preachers are more notable than others. Fr. Gerald Vann, O.P., was ordained in 1929 at the remarkable age of twenty-three in a Dominican Order known for its careful discrimination about its candidates. Despite fame both in his native England and in the United States, his brilliant and accessible writing has largely disappeared from view.

Of great significance is this compendium of Lenten inspirations. In seven chapters marked by originality and striking clarity, Fr. Vann gets under the rind and into the heart of every aspect of Christ’s Passion. You’ll learn:

  • What the Agony in the Garden tells us about our own struggles, sorrows, and sins

  • What Christ’s betrayal reveals about the depth of our love, faith, and devotion

  • How the scourging teaches us to rule our flesh, rather than letting it rule us

  • How we can replicate the stillness of Mary in our lives

  • Ways we can prepare for and withstand the Valley of the Shadow of Death

  • What the difference between the two thieves teaches us about the glory of God

  • How, through the sorrow of God, the world is renewed

Fr. Vann emphasizes that in neither our spiritual lives nor our lives in the world can we ignore a crucial aphorism that will play a role in determining our destiny: “the importance of small things.” He draws out a plan for noticing, appreciating, and prospering from these simple treasures.