Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A Last Minute Stocking Stuffer

Hints of Heaven 
Rutler, Fr. George William
Sophia Institute Press. Kindle Edition. (2015-01-05). 

Let's just say that I really, really enjoyed this little book. The title "Hints of Heaven" applies to the parables of Jesus and Fr. Rutler offers a profound and oftentimes playful commentary on each single one. I call the book a stocking stuffer and think you'd be doing any priest a favor by gifting him with this one. Provide the instruction that on the Monday before the Sunday, when the Gospel includes a parable, that he should give the relevant chapter a read and not stifle the possible thoughts or insights which might be forthcoming.

Despite the fact that Fr. Rutler has an active English vocabulary surpassing the average, using words with a certain naturalness that would cause my friends to do a double-take should they come from my mouth, his book is readily accessible and to be enjoyed by your average Catholic lay person as well. Though contextualized in his own stomping grounds of big city New York, it is not without merit for the suburb or the prairie. "Hints of Heaven" is a good read and a good book for spiritual reading. Have at it at your earliest convenience.

Each parable is treated separately and can edify. Here is my favorite quote on the sacrament centered nature of life within the Catholic Church:

"Fine studies of this parable by evangelical Christians miss the one point that is the whole point — the center of the parable that is also its circumference, rather like God Himself: the wedding feast is the Eucharist, to which we are admitted by baptism, and those baptismal robes are laundered in the confessional and flaunted in all the sacraments. For the Catholic, the wedding garment is worn all the time in the sacramental life. It should not be hidden away in a hope chest for the Last Judgment." (p. 72). 


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