My book review of 'The Way of St Benedict' by Rowan Williams

The Way of St Benedict

by Rowan Williams
The Way of St Benedict
by Rowan Williams

The former Archbishop of Canterbury has always been drawn to the Rule of Life outlined by St Benedict and, in this book, he describes how he believes this is relevant for us today.

Although this book was aimed primarily at the concerns and demands of a post-Brexit audience, since the coronavirus pandemic, in our current stripped-down existence, we can heed the wisdom and advice with a different ear.

Self-isolation and social distancing may have brought a monastic existence to mind for some. For others, getting along with family members in constant and close proximity may be a huge challenge. And, Rowan Williams, with St Benedict, addresses it all.

Take a simple meal, for example. Do you find that today, as never perhaps before, you relish each mouthful? Whereas a meal used to be eaten distractedly in front of the television, or scanning a phone, now it is a delight in itself as we savour the flavours and sustenance, and appreciate the person who has provided it, and set it before us.

In this book, Rowan Williams urges us "to discover that little bit of freedom to step back, to think and reflect, and pray, and to see more clearly".

A thoughtful and thought-provoking book.

Find out more about this book from my interview with Rowan Williams published here and here, and the podcast here.

Review date: November 2020