The divine fire within -- Part 2

Fr. Ronald Rolheiser

Episode 2: Being missionaries to our children (27 min.)
"The real mission field is not Africa and Asia," Fr. Ron Rolheiser tells Tom Fox. "Our missionary work today is with our own children." Rolheiser tells Tom Fox about being at World Youth Day in Toronto with Pope John Paul II. A million young people showed up, he said. The energy was tremendous. But what nagged at the back of his mind, he said, were the 50 million young people who were not there. Those are the people he wants to reach and, he said, the language of dogma and doctrine won’t reach them. He searches for "the language of the soul." "I believe the dogma, I believe the catechism, but something farther has to be done. Somebody has to take this language and say this is what it means in our lives. And that language has to be created."

The divine fire within
Fr. Ronald Rolheiser — author, lecturer, retreat leader, columnist and spiritual guide — is one of the most influential voices in Catholic spirituality today. A member of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, he is president of the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, Texas. Rolheiser’s books and lectures call Catholics to new ways of thinking about church for the 21st century. He is re-imagining and re-formulating Catholic doctrine and spirituality for a younger generation.

A transcript of this inteview is available here: Transcript. Fox can be reached at:

Books by Ronald Rolheiser
Secularity and the Gospel: Being Missionaries to Our Children (Crossroad). Missionary work formerly meant bringing the Gospel to faraway places and other peoples. Today, even our own children know little about the Gospel. Fr. Ronald Rolheiser shows how Christian faith can thrive in a secular world.
Forgotten Among the Lilies: Learning to Love Beyond Our Fears (Doubleday). Rolheiser focuses on the obsessions that can dominate modern lives. "This book is for those who struggle to make this life, such as it is, enough." Rolheiser explores the debilitating obsessions that often dominate our lives and offers guidance for learning to leave our fears, anxieties, and guilt "forgotten among the lilies."

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The Holy Longing: The Search for a Christian Spirituality (Doubleday). Rolheiser shows how to channel restlessness and deep desire into a healthy spirituality.

The Restless Heart: Finding our Spiritual Home in Times of Loneliness (Doubleday). Rolheiser addresses the problems of loneliness and isolation in the present age. He identifies different types of loneliness and discusses the dangers and opportunities they represent in our lives, offering a distinctively Christian approach to living an examined, involved life.
The Shattered Lantern: Rediscovering a Felt Presence of God (Crossroad). Faith, if not shattered, is shaken by secular culture. Rolheiser looks at the contemplative path in Christian spirituality.


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