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Shepherds and Fishermen

Spiritual Exercises for Bishops, Priests, and Religious
Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap; translated by Marsha Daigle-Williamson and Patrick McSherry, OFM Cap; foreward by Archbishop José Gomez

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ISBN: 9780814666418, 6641
Details: 280 pgs , 5 1/2 x 8 1/2
Publication Date: 11/15/2020

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Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap, preacher to the papal household for over forty years, graciously accepted Pope Francis’s invitation to lead a six-day retreat for the bishops of the United States in January 2019. Shepherds and Fishermen contains the reflections and meditations that guided this gathering, presented in an accessible format for groups and individuals seeking spiritual and ministerial inspiration.

Shepherds and Fishermen lifts up the words of Mark 3:14: “He appointed twelve . . .  that they might be with him and he might send them forth to preach.” Reflections and meditations offered in lectio divina, homilies, and liturgies focus on what it means to “be with Jesus” while also “going forth to preach.” Retreatants will reflect upon the ways their ministry is dependent upon both personal sanctification and pastoral activity.

The twenty-six scripturally based and culturally relevant meditations make Shepherds and Fishermen an ideal companion for a self-directed retreat or a prolonged spiritual exercise. As Jesus’s call to be shepherds of sheep and fishers of men is addressed to every baptized person, the wisdom shared in this book will be treasured by bishops, priests, deacons, religious, candidates, and seminarians, as well as laity who wish to deepen their spiritual lives.

Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap, taught the history of Christian origins at the Catholic University of Milan and served on the International Theological Commission. He devotes his ministry to preaching and writing, and since 1980 he has been the Preacher to the Papal Household. Cantalamessa is author of Jesus Began to Preach: The Mystery of God's Word; Come, Creator Spirit; Mary: Mirror of the Church; The Eucharist: Our Sanctification; Easter: Meditations on the Resurrection; The Holy Spirit in the Life of Jesus; The Mystery of Easter; The Mystery of Pentecost; and Life in Christ; (all published by Liturgical Press).

Capuchin Father Raniero Cantalamessa, preacher to the papal household, takes us on a retreat to encounter the Risen Christ in the love, guidance, and power of the Holy Spirit. These conferences, originally given to the US Bishops, have been adapted so that their reflections can touch the life of all believers: priests, religious, lay men and women. The hope of Father Cantalamessa is that the voice of the Risen Lord rings clear for all who enter this retreat with an open heart. He offers us a message that is spiritually deep and at the same time, practical for living the Gospel message with fidelity, peace, and joy.
Abbot Gregory J. Polan, OSB, Abbot Primate of the Benedictine Confederation, Sant’Anselmo, Rome

For me, this was a memorable time of deepening conversion and spiritual growth, and it was a blessing to be able to pray and learn from Father Cantalamessa, who is truly one of the spiritual masters of our time. I am grateful to him and Liturgical Press for now bringing out this adaptation of the spiritual exercises that he preached to my brother bishops and I, making his insights and guidance available to the whole Church.
Most Reverend José H. Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles, President, USCCB

I am delighted to find available Fr. Cantalamessa’s retreat conferences and reflections. This was my very first retreat as the newest bishop of the United States at the time. This powerful encounter with the Word amid the community of my brother bishops has marked my ministry as shepherd and fisherman, a brother and a priest in Christ’s Church. I am sure I will be back to this book many times for review, encouragement, and renewal!
Most Reverend Juan Miguel Betancourt, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Hartford

This book is based upon the conferences that Fr. Cantalamessa gave to the bishops of the United States in January of 2019. It was one of the signal spiritual privileges of my life to have participated in that retreat. Though these talks were directed originally to successors of the Apostles, I believe that any Christian will find them uplifting and illuminating. Relying on the Scriptures, the Church Fathers, the great medieval theologians, and the masters of the spiritual tradition, the preacher to the papal household draws his readers into the dynamics of the Christian life. I guarantee that a careful and prayerful engagement of this text will change your life.
Bishop Robert Barron, Episcopal Vicar of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles

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