(Archbishop Anthony Bloom)
Meditations on a Theme
A spiritual journey
Continuum, 2003, £7.99
(price at publication of review)
Reviewed May 2005; © Copyright, The Society of Saint Francis, 2005
Meditations on a Theme was originally published by Mowbrays in 1972, and was one of the early works of Metropolitan Anthony (Anthony Bloom), Exarch of the Russian Orthodox Church in Western Europe, who died in August 2003.
The theme of the book is discipleship and is presented in three parts. Preparation for the Journey explores the fact that we cannot wait for the Kingdom of God to be handed to us but that we come to meet God and experience the Kingdom by the offering of ourselves to the discipline of spiritual endeavour; discipleship.
The Journey, comprises five meditations, based on encounters with Jesus and the parables. The Goal, brings us to the Resurrection and the Cross. '...without the death on the cross there is no Resurrection, the Resurrection which is joy, the joy of life recovered, the joy of the life that no-one can take away from us anymore!'
Each meditation could be used individually, perhaps as part of a Quiet Day. But more so, this book yields much if worked through from beginning to end. As such, it would be ideal as an accompanying text to Lent, or private retreat reading.
The book ends on a note that all followers of St Francis should hold dear. 'Are we not going to take up our cross and follow Christ?.. We know that the Kingdom of God is ours if we simply follow him.'
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