What does reading these essays do for me and for other readers in their twenties? Like Sr. Joan, these writers point the way to the past, not the future. All right, the 60's happened. Get over it. Puh-leaze. Meanwhile, the rest of us have to figure out how to live the faith here and now, stuck in the middle of this scandal-ridden Weak-Land called "american cathoicism" They may aspire to be a Catholic mod-squad, but they come off more like the Flintstones. Perhaps they should have all gotten themselves ordained by the Peace Corps.
Spiritual Questions for the 21st Century - edited by Mary Hembrow Snyder - is a collection of fascinating essays by contemporaries of Joan Chittister OSB. The book is not a gushy tribute to Joan but an incredible, thought provoking, and nourishing tribute to the questions that each essayist believes is the defining spiritual question for her/him for this new century. Joan herself, a purveyor extrordinaire of spiritual questions throughout her own life, offers a timely and eloquent 'Afterword' entitled: The Power of Questions to Propel.
Twenty-five contemporaries of Joan's including Diana Hayes, Dan Berrigan, Richard Rohr, Edwina Gately, Rembert Weakland, Sandra Schneiders, and Thomas Gumbleton were asked to address this: "What do you think is the most important spiritual question of our time?" The diversity and richness of the responses illuminate the darkness that has become so representative of the times in which we are living.
I highly recommend the use of this book for peace and justice study groups as well as for all people of good will who are beginning to see the connection of the 'consciousness of the sacred' and 'action on behalf of justice' for the least among us, including our endangered earth.