“Why am I here? To give my life to Jesus. To make Jesus the very center of my existence—with Mary as my gentle counselor.” —from Chapter One
It was January 1990, the dawn of a new decade, and Henri Nouwen, world-renowned spiritual writer, was in France but his writing wasn’t going well. Frustrated and discouraged, he decided to go to Lourdes, even though it was the “off season,” to give his “anxious heart a rest.” This profoundly inspiring journal is the result of his three-day stay.
Lourdes restored Nouwen’s inner peace and helped him return to his sacred center. He realized, of course, that he did not need to be at Lourdes to find peace and joy. The purity, simplicity, and freedom he experienced “belong to the heart and can be lived anywhere.”
Whether we have been to Lourdes or not, does not matter. This small journal is bound to touch our own restless and searching hearts and help us to find again our own sacred center, the living Christ within us.
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Henri Nouwen wrote over 40 books on the spiritual life that have sold millions of copies and been translated into dozens of languages. His vision was broad and inclusive, and his compassion embraced everyone. He died in 1996, but his work and spirit live on.