Your Second to Last Chapter Creating a Meaningful Life on Your Own Terms

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Creating a Meaningful Life on Your Own Terms
Your Second to Last Chapter

Noted author Paul Wilkes blazes a path strewn with new and exciting possibilities for what is an uncharted time in our lives. With millions of Americans entering their so-called “retirement years” — many with few material needs but a hunger in their souls to make this “second to last chapter” count — Wilkes offers the practical counsel of one who has already been there. “The last thing we want to do in our remaining productive years is count the daisies and days,” he says. “We want to matter, to accomplish something that matters. Something is stirring within us and demands a response.”

Your Second to Last Chapter is a time when you are at the peak of your powers — wise in years, brimming with experience, ready to take on fresh new challenges. Wilkes shows how to match your passion and abilities with human needs in new ways that will use your talents to fullest and provide you the deepest personal satisfaction possible.

Wilkes, one of Catholicism’s most respected writers on individual spirituality and the founder of Homes of Hope India, provides touchstones for your adventure: voices to listen to and voices not to listen to, how to develop a poised readiness to see where you might be called to help or serve, what barriers you will face and how to confront them.


A wise, warm and wonderful book for anyone wondering “What next?” Filled with practical advice and profound wisdom, Paul Wilkes’ brave new book makes the perfect companion for anyone ready to apply their hard-fought experience and hard-won knowledge to the world’s needs, both great and small.

— James Martin, SJ, The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything

When I read Paul Wilkes’ book a whole new mindset emerged. We’ve had vital, exciting careers, why stop now? But here’s the irony: what you end up doing in this phase is nothing you can plan for….it FINDS you. I thought that was crazy until it happened to me. I would have never planned to start an All-Girls Leadership School. Wilkes’ book will walk you through how to let go of the old and open yourself completely to a new and fulfilling Second to the Last Chapter. I assure you it will be the best chapter of your life.

— Judy Girard, President Emeritus, FOOD network and HGTV

About the Author

Paul Wilkes lectures across the country about the role of religious belief in individual lives as well the place and impact of religion in public life. As a commentator on religious issues, he has appeared on all major television networks.

Wilkes’ publications include In Due Season: A Catholic Life, his autobiography, and In Mysterious Ways: The Death and Life of a Parish Priest. He has written for many national magazines, such as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and The New York Times Magazine; was a reporter for the Baltimore Sun and the Boulder Daily Camera; and was instrumental in two televised documentaries: Merton and Six American Families.

Wilkes lives in Wilmington, North Carolina, with his wife Tracy, who founded DREAMS, an arts program for at-risk children. The Wilkes have two grown sons, Noah and Daniel. In addition to Homes of Hope, Paul is a co-founder of CHIPS (Christian Help in Park Slope), a Brooklyn center that has served the poor and homeless young mothers and children for almost forty years.

Product Preview

Format: Paperback book
Product code: AP2014
Dimensions: 5½" x 7½"
Length: 118 pages
In Extenso Press
1-2 copies $13.46 each
3-5 copies $12.71 each
6+ copies $11.96 each