Saturday, October 21, 2017

Catholic Books!

October 22, 2017
Letter about beginning St. Anthony's Library for Evangelization and Catechesis
Dear Friends in Christ, The numerous Catholic books that have been shelved in our various churches, rectories, and halls have started to be transported to St. John Vianney Church Irasburg. A couple book shelves have already been placed in the sacristy to start sorting and displaying Catholic books. I think every Catholic should have a good 15 or 20 favorite Catholic books in their home. A Bible and a Catechism are of course prerequisites before counting other books in one’s personal collection. But many priests, parishes, and laity end up with a pile of good Catholic books which are never used or referenced. It is worth an initiative to display them, and maybe circulate them a little more. Do you need to find some classic Catholic books for your spiritual reading every now and then? St. Anthony’s Library is a resource for you. Have you ever looked for a particular book or books on a particular topic? I hope St. Anthony’s Library is a resource for you. In a few months I hope to share an available book list with Seminarians, DREs, Church Ministers, and other priests. That you may know where the library name came from, it is a convergence of many factors. St. Anthony of Padua is a doctor of the Church, and he has been given the title of “the  Evangelical Doctor.” Whatever spreads the Gospel is evangelical. The goal of a Catholic library of course is the goal that St. Anthony had: to spread the Catholic faith. St. John Vianney was a tertiary Franciscan who adopted the Franciscan spirit in his life. So there is a connection between St. Anthony and St. John Vianney. In our parish, both St. John Vianney Church and St. Paul’s Church have statues of St. Anthony of Padua. Both St. John Vianney and St. Anthony were students of theology. It is a caricature of St. John Vianney that he was little educated because he was a poor student. While lagging behind in his seminary studies, and certainly not as studied as St. Anthony, he eventually came to own a personal library of 500 books: a notable book collection for a simple parish priest! And he studied them and referred to them to prepare his sermons. His interest was always to teach the Catholic and Apostolic faith, so that people could life a life worthy of the treasures of heaven. Therefore I think he would approve of a church having his name holding “St. Anthony's Library for Evangelization and Catechesis.” Thank you for donations of books by Catholic authors which are written according to the Catholic faith. God bless you, Fr. Naples