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Bread and Wine: Readings for Lent and Easter Paperback – March 10, 2005


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 412 pages
  • Publisher: Orbis Books (March 10, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1570755728
  • ISBN-13: 978-1570755729
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 5.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,370 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Has there ever been a more hard-hitting, beautifully written, theologically inclusive anthology of writings for Lent and Easter? It's doubtful. Many readers may well find that this collection-a sequel to Plough's highly successful Watch for the Light: Readings for Advent and Christmas-is the one book they return to year after year, forgoing their usual custom of buying a new Lenten devotional each spring. Six separate sections (Invitation, Temptation, Passion, Crucifixion, Resurrection and New Life) guide readers through the essential elements of spiritual preparation and feature writings from some of Christendom's most celebrated masters. Classic thinkers such as Martin Luther and John Donne share space with 20th-century theologians like C.S. Lewis, G.K. Chesterton and Dorothy Day. There is also a generous sampling from contemporary writers, including Philip Yancey, John Updike, Frederick Buechner, Madeleine L'Engle, Henri Nouwen and Brennan Manning. Caveat lector: no one should have this much pleasure during Lent!
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

"Hardhitting and beautifully written [featuring] Christendom's most celebrated masters." -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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The devotional is everything that it was described to be.
Heidi A. Gott
I read it even outside the Lent season; I feel that reading a short essay or two each day keeps me grounded and remembering to pray, and to be thankful every day.
EyesLiketheSea
It has greatly impacted my life this Easter/Lenten season and a devotional I know I will bring out each Easter season.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

58 of 59 people found the following review helpful By Paul M. Dubuc on June 8, 2003
Format: Hardcover
"For Breadth of scope and depth of insight nothing rivals this collection", says on the dust jacket. I heartily agree! This collection of readings is the best supplement to Lenten and Easter devotional reading that I have ever used. I've never seen such a selection of great authors' writings between the covers of one book. Each of the 72 selections are about 4 or 5 pages long. They are grouped into 6 sections that form a progression from the Invitation prepare for Easter by seriously examining oneself and following through on the themes of Temptation, Passion, Crucifixion, Resurrection and New Life. There are quite a variety of perspectives represented in these writings. Every one of them will reward the thoughtful reader in different ways. There isn't a dull one in the bunch. These aren't shallow "inspirational" writings. They will challenge and encourage, and sustain serious reflection. It's hard to pick a favorite, but I'd say that Malcolm Muggeridge's "Impending Resurrection" was the high point. I highly recommend this book.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By audrey TOP 500 REVIEWER on March 26, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a small, easily-carried book organized into the topics of Invitation, Temptation, Passion, Crucifixion, Resurrection and New Life. The 72 essays are from an eclectic mix of authors: Oscar Wilde, Thomas Merton, John Donne, Kahlil Gibran, Blaise Pascal, Martin Luther, G.K.Chesterton, Mother Teresa, Dylan Thomas, John Updike, Dorothy Sayers, Madeleine L'Engle, Leo Tolstoy and many others. Selections are typically five to six pages long, and printed in a large clean font on heavy paper. There are a few poems, but primarily prose is used to inspire and to comfort.
A wonderful little book.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Brad Shorr on March 12, 2007
Format: Paperback
These 72 brief essays are loaded with inspiring and challenging spiritual insight. The authors are incredibly diverse--Leo Tolstoy, Thomas a Kempis, Meister Eckhart, Martin Luther, Mother Teresa, and John Updike, to name a few. Not every contributor is a household name, but every reflection is moving and powerful...

"Christianity is the only religion on earth that has felt that omnipotence made God incomplete." G.K. Chesterton

"If the ultimate, the hardest, cannot be asked of me; if my fellows hesitate to ask it and turn to someone else, then I know nothing of Calvary love." Amy Carmichael

"The essence of sin is man substituting himself for God, while the essence of salvation is God substituting himself for man." John Scott

"A follower is or strives to be what he admires. An admirer, however, keeps himself personally detached." Soren Kierkegaard

Those thoughts alone might supply forty days-worth of spiritual reflection! For preparation and renewal, this book is can be opened again and again.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By TheophilusFarrell4 on February 3, 2015
Format: Paperback
Bread and Wine is a collection of seventy-two readings spanning all the themes of Lent and Easter.
There are poems, prayers, meditations, excerpts from sermons and essays and lengthy theological tomes.

The authors come from all over the world, from all ages and times.

There is Kahlil Gibran, an early 20th century Lebanese poet raised as a Maronite Catholic.
There is George MacDonald, a Scottish fantasy author and minister in the 1800s.
There is Ernesto Cardenal, a Nicaraguan poet and cultural activist.
There is Walter J. Ciszek, a Jesuit priest who served within the Soviet Union.
There is Edna Hong, a Kierkegaard scholar and translator as well as a novelist.
There is Peter Kreeft, a contemporary philosophy professor at Boston College.

The material is arranged under five main headings, and I'll give you a few examples from each one.

Invitation~
This section calls us to Come near to the Cross, Hear His words, See Ourselves, Repent, and then Go Forth.
The first selection is a poem by Oscar Wilde, with that plaintive cry "How else but through a broken heart can the Lord Christ enter in?"
Walter Wangerin speaks about Christ as the perfect Mirror, the one that terrifies and startles with its clarity- and yet heals us too.
"This mirror is made of righteous flesh and of divinity- and this one loves me absolutely."
Jean-Pierre de Caussade writes about surrender: "Everything is yours, everything is from you and for you. Mine is to be satisfied with your work..."
Edna Hong describes the way Lent strips the soul and then Christ supplies His fullness.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Cheryl H. on January 22, 2015
Format: Hardcover
…And thus we rust Life’s iron chain degraded and alone: and some men curse, and some men weep, and some men make no moan: but God’s eternal Laws are kind and break the heart of stone. ~Oscar Wilde (The Ballad of Reading Gaol)

Bread and Wine: Readings for Lent and Easter, is a book of daily meditations that encourage us to reflect on obstacles in our lives, strengthen our faith, and prepare our hearts for Easter.

This collection of seventy-two readings is grouped into six themes: Invitation, Temptation, Passion, Crucifixion, Resurrection, and New Life.

I like how each section opens with a relevant poem. The poetry sets the tone and readies the reader for the devotions that follow. Most readings span three to seven pages, and reveal reflective messages that lingered with me long after I finish reading them. I also like the diversity of authors, giving a variety of voices and writing styles. Though some of their views differ slightly from mine, I appreciate the learning opportunity and philosophical stimulation.

Though I’ve read from each of the six themes, I haven’t read the book in its entirety, but as of yet the final section, New Life, is my favorite. Both penetrating and inspirational, this theme produced the deepest impression in me.

Bread and Wine is a lovely, thought-provoking, heart-prickling devotional. It’s presented in a 5’x7” hardback, with a sturdy dust jacket, is a lovely addition to springtime reading, and suitable for gift giving.

Personal Note:
I have observed and celebrated Easter all of my adult life, but for most of those years I believed only Catholic or Lutheran faiths observed Lent. Upon looking further into the meaning and purpose of the Lenten season, I realize that a myriad of Christians observe it.
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