Take a look at the gospels with married eyes. The Pearl of Great Price: Gospel Wisdom for Christian Marriage shows married and engaged couples how to pray and reflect on God’s Word together, allowing the beautiful intimacy of prayer in marriage to become reality. This simple yet profound book considers such basic gospel stories as Joseph’s wedding jitters, the angel’s appearance to Mary, and the wedding at Cana’all providing spiritual meaning for today’s couples.
Inspired by lectio divina, an ancient Christian prayer technique, The Pearl helps couples deepen their marital relationship and find God at the heart of their marriage. It is a wonderful guide for marriage preparation and enrichment and makes a meaningful wedding or anniversary gift. This tiny book fits conveniently into both pockets and busy lives, but its big title reminds us that like all of God’s gifts, a good marriage is worth more than a world of possessions.
Julie McCarty is a freelance writer and has been published in numerous religious journals and newspapers. She has a master’s degree in theology from the University of St. Thomas (St. Paul, Minnesota). Julie and her husband Terry have been married since 1984 and speak to groups about topics related to marriage spirituality. To learn more about Julie McCarty, please visit her website: www.juliemccarty.com
Using The Pearl of Great Price is proving very beneficial. I have struggled for years to incorporate a sense of the role of spirituality in a Christian marriage. This text is going a long way and can be interspersed throughout the course. I have many post-its marking the pages that are relevant to the readings of the day. I also try to transpose the questions into ones relevant for single readers. The students bring the text to class-it is a convenient size-and read to each other in turn.
Marguerite L. Spencer, Professor of Theology, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minnesota
. . . a treasure of Gospel readings, reflections, meditations and closing prayers. . . . The Pearl of Great Price seems perfect not only for married couples, but also for those preparing for marriage, those in Marriage Encounters and even those in counseling.
There is a lot of self-help literature available for married couples and Doctor Phil is all over the TV screen with handy advice. This small booklet offers some practical nourishment of a very different kind. The author gently suggests that couples might also find strength and inspiration by taking the chance to reflect and pray together, however briefly. This little book provides a down-to-earth guide on how to do that.
The Bible Today
Do you desire to grow in your intimate life with your spouse? Through the ancient practice of sacred reading (Lectio Divina), McCarty leads couples into daily times of meditation and prayer in the Gospels. What joy to rediscover the marriage union as a priceless treasure from God! After twenty-five years of marriage and over twenty years in full-time pastoral ministry, I often look for books to offer couples who want to grow deeper in the Lord together. For Catholics, Protestants and Orthodox couples alike, The Pearl of Great Price is such a treasury of wisdom for couples who seek greater spiritual intimacy and joy as husband and wife.
David Robinson, Author of The Family Cloister: Benedictine Wisdom for the Home and The Christian Family Toolbox: 52 Benedictine Activities for the Home
What a wonderful book! Julie McCarty writes with great biblical insight expressed with practical wisdom. She describes how the gospel can be integrated into daily marital living through the Benedictine practice of reading, reflecting, responding, and contemplating. The book includes thirty-six individual devotionals around subjects that couples face on a daily basis-they are a string of pearls!
Maureen Rogers Law and Lanny Law, Authors of God Knows Marriage Isn't Always Easy
McCarty has put together an excellent tool for Christian couples-truly a pearl of wisdom and inspiration for those couples willing to pause together in prayer with open hearts so that they may discover a deeper meaning and love in their commitment to one another. Through The Pearl of Great Price, the author bids couples to abandon their fears of discussing and sharing their deepest thoughts, hopes, fears, and failures and instead to embrace the intimacy of prayer united together as one. By providing Scripture verses, reflections, simple discussion questions, and a closing prayer for each segment . . . Mrs. McCarty supplies the tools necessary to get couples engaged in active and productive discussion with the goal of enriching their marriage or engagement.
Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle, Author of Catholic Saints Prayer Book
Julie McCarty offers couples a valuable form from within the Christian tradition of prayer to help them reflect together on their spirituality. This is a helpful, practical way for married folks to enhance their awareness of God's presence in their midst.
Kathy Finley, Author of Prayers for the Newly Married (ACTA Publications)
It is so easy in today's culture to forget that marriage is a vocation. In The Pearl of Great Price, Julie McCarty clearly turns our focus back to this reality, calling us to `look at the gospels with married eyes' to see how Christ is currently at work in our marriages to bring about His loving purposes. Jesus' first public miracle was at a wedding feast and the Blessed Mother instructed the servants: `Do whatever He tells you.' Throughout The Pearl of Great Price, Julie McCarty provides insightful and at times piercing reflections on marital implications oozing from the gospels, and she repeatedly reminds us to `do whatever He tells you.' This book is a must read for those married couples seeking fresh insights into their vocation.
John R. Buri, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minnesota
This is a unique and very good book-profound yet practical. It could well become for many couples an inspirational and helpful resource for their frequent date nights.
Rev. Joseph M. Champlin, Author of the Sacrificial Giving Program (Liturgical Press)
Even better than a greeting card for a wedding!
Mary Murphy, Director of Liturgy and Music, St. Margaret Mary Parish, Pennsylvania