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The King, Crucified and Risen

Updated: Feb 26, 2021

Friday Book Pick: The King, Crucified and Risen:

Meditations on the Passion and Glory of Christ

By Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR

The old palm gets burned until it is in the unrecognizable state of ash so that it can be smeared (or sprinkled) onto our heads next Wednesday—Ash Wednesday. This is an annual opportunity for people worldwide to publicly identify as followers of Jesus Christ and be marked as pilgrims. It is the onset of our Lenten pilgrimage.

Lent is preparation for Easter like life is preparation for Heaven.

It is easy to take Lent as a 40-day personal self-help program, a kind of sanctified diet plan, but to do so is to get Lent all wrong.

Lent is about Jesus. Self-help is about self. John the Baptist gave us the best possible Lenten motto: I must decrease so that Jesus can increase.

If you are considering picking up some extra time for prayer and for spiritual reading during Lent, today’s book pick is my recommendation for a Lenten companion. I am recommending this book on the merit of its author, a name you have read in this blog more than a few times.

†Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR departed this life over six years ago now, and I want to do my part to introduce as many people to him as possible. He is a person impossible to forget by those who knew him. But the ambit of his influence and friendship could be—and should be—wider still. Not only was he one of the eight founders of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, he was a devoted father to the poor all his days, and as a priest and a psychologist, he was friend of all who suffer with anxiety and depression and all other dark mental storms. If he becomes a Saint someday, he will be a patron for the poor and for those who struggle with interior darkness.

Fr. Benedict was a keen observer of the “signs of the times.” Often during the intense months of the pandemic, social upheaval, and the political mayhem of late, I have wondered what Father Benedict’s sage commentary might have been, were he here to give it.

Thankfully, Fr. Benedict’s books sound just like him. His wry humor and his down-to-earth wisdom come through loud and clear, as do his spiritual depth and unflagging devotion to God and Holy Mother Church. If you are looking for a guide to walk with you through the 40 days of Lent, consider getting to know Fr. Benedict. His role in the Church did not end with death. I venture to propose he is only getting started!

Mother Clare, CFR



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