We recently received the following feedback from a follower of our ministry who was once a reader of the controversial Jesus Calling book by Sarah Young but found something so much better she wanted to share it with the rest of us.
LMC writes: “I have an amazing daily book that is a million times better than “Jesus Calling” (I used to read these [Jesus Calling meditations] everyday and would get a new one every year and then one day I read a day that sounded off to me and haven’t read them since). The book I found is by Fr. Benedict Groeschel CFR, called Jesus and Mary! It’s a daily reading (40 of them, but I just start back at the beginning when I finish). I found it when one of the brothers from the friary he founded was there on a retreat. They had a pile of books from Father and I picked this one up automatically. I haven’t read Jesus calling since!”
As LMC discovered, Catholics don’t need to settle for a devotional book written by a Protestant missionary who was emulating two “automatic writers” when she wrote the best-selling Jesus Calling.
If you’re looking for a replacement, you may want to try LMC’s recommendation, or perhaps one of the following:
My Daily Bread, written by Father Anthony Paone, is a collection of short daily reflections on the spiritual life that are written in the easy-to-read format of an ongoing dialogue with God.
Divine Intimacy by Father Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen offers meditations on the spiritual life for every day of the liturgical year. Although pricey, this book is a classic and a “must read” for anyone who aspires to union with God.
In Conversation with God by Father Francisco Fernandez is a seven-volume set (can be purchased individually) of some of the richest and most comprehensive readings on the faith. It contains scripture and the writings of the saints as well as reflections on the various aspects of the Catholic life. Even one of these volumes contains enough information to feed a hungry soul for years!
A Catholic Woman’s Book of Days by Amy Wellborn is another much-loved daily devotional that offers a Bible verse for each day, a short story that goes along with the verse, and a prayer.
If anyone has any other suggestions, please send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll be sure to share them.
UPDATE: Since posting this blog, we have received two more excellent suggestions:
Voices of the Saints: A Year of Readings by Bert Ghezzi contains a reflection by a different saint for 365 days of the year.
For those who are looking on reflections for the day’s readings, consider Ordinary Grace which is published by Pauline Books and Media.
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