December 2000By David Arias Jr.

The Intellectual Life: Its Spirit, Conditions, and Methods.  By Fr. A.G. Sertillanges, O.P. Catholic University of America Press. 266 pages. $19.95.

This classic work on the intellectual life has recently been reprinted with a new foreword by Fr. James Schall, S.J. Originally published in the 1930s, Fr. Sertillanges’s teachings are as timeless as any truths which describe the genuine nature of things. Fr. Sertillanges’s work is essentially a presentation of St. Thomas’s Sixteen Precepts for Acquiring the Treasure of Knowledge originally contained in a letter to a Brother John. Many relevant topics are discussed, including the nature of the intellectual vocation, the virtues proper to a Catholic intellectual, the organization of one’s time and reading, the proper formation of memory, as well as the essential place of prayer in the intellectual life. This book is highly recommended not only for intellectuals, but also for students and those discerning their vocation in life.

Bonaventure: Mystical Writings.  By Fr. Zachary Hayes, O.F.M. Crossroad. 152 pages. $14.95.

In this short and readable book, Fr. Zachary Hayes attempts to make accessible the profound trinitarian and christological theology of the Seraphic Doctor, St. Bonaventure. For centuries the great St. Bonaventure has been overshadowed by his contemporary and friend St. Thomas Aquinas. Fr. Hayes’s work helps bring St. Bonaventure out of the shadows. To do so Fr. Hayes utilizes the general structure of one of St. Bon-aventure’s best known works, The Journey of the Soul into God. Fr. Hayes incorporates into his book many illuminating texts which give us a sense of the profundity of Bonaventurian thought.

Solanus Casey: The Official Account of a Virtuous American Life.  Edited by Fr. Michael Crosby, O.F.M., Cap. Crossroad. 275 pages. $19.95.

In 1995 Solanus Casey received the title “Venerable” from Pope John Paul II. As such, he became the first American-born male ever to carry this title. This work covers “two of the three volumes in the trilogy of material considered by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints for the Cause for Canonization of So-lanus Casey, O.F.M., Cap.” Not only do these pages acquaint one with the biography of Venerable Solanus Casey, but they also allow one to see that Venerable Solanus lived a life of heroic virtue.

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