JPII – Access All Areas was published recently by One by One Press, a project of the Irish Dominicans. The book comprises 23 short chapters which reveal in manageable chunks the thought of Saint John Paul II. What is exciting is that each chapter has been written by a member of the ‘JPII generation’. I was asked to write the chapter on John Paul II and catechesis, which was an immense joy, since I have a great love for both topics…
I just received a copy of the book at the weekend and read it on the train. It is a great read. Topics include World Youth Day, Theology of the Body, John Paul’s understanding of anthropology and women, Our Lady, work, moral theology, his Letter to Artists, and much more. I like the fact that the book is littered throughout with glimpses into the Saint’s life. So, as you’re deepening your understanding of these issues, you’re at the same time learning about a truly inspiring man.
That is the wonderful thing about the incarnational character of our Faith – what we believe becomes visible when it is ‘enfleshed’, when it moves from the realm of ideas into the realm of experience, when the ‘Word becomes flesh’. This was the wonder of John Paul II – we witness the drama of redemption in his thought and his teaching, but most profoundly in the events of his life. This is what a Saint is – one in whom the mystery comes truly alive.
Here is the blurb from the publisher:
“The intention of this volume is to introduce John Paul to a new public, a younger generation… this volume is a fitting tribute both to his memory and to the enduring effect of his papacy.” said Archbishop Charles Browne, Papal Nuncio to Ireland, who will launch the new publication in Knock Shrine on April 27th.
Divided into twenty-three short, readable chapters, this book enables readers of all backgrounds to understand better St John Paul’s various writings:
Breda O’Brien (Journalist) writes on John Paul II and the dignity of women. Ray Kinsella (UCD), recounts his mission for world peace. Ryan Connolly (Student) comments on his ‘Letter to Artists’, while John Waters (Writer) addresses his thoughts on the worker. Fr. Alan O’ Sullivan explains John Paul’s hugely significant restatement of Catholic teaching on sexuality, ‘the Theology of the Body’, while Niamh Uí Bhriain (Life Institute) outlines his teaching on life issues and human dignity. Fr Gerard Dolan writes on John Paul II and the Eucharist. Gareth Carroll (Youth 2000) discusses the ‘World Youth Day’ phenomenon.