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Why Bother Praying Paperback – March 1, 2013

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Richard Leonard, SJ, is a Jesuit of the Australian Province. He is the director of the Australian Catholic Film Office, a consultant to the Australian Catholic Bishop's Media Committee, and a film critic for all the major Catholic newspapers of Australia. A holder of a doctorate in cinema studies, he has lectured all over the world.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Paulist Press (March 1, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 080914803X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0809148035
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.4 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #650,913 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By David O'Halloran on May 6, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Like the refreshing, no nonsense approach. A great follow on from Where the Hell is God which I read just prior to this work. Have not previously really read up on prayer and found the information and insights very helpful and, indeed, quite inspiring.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Martin Fricke on February 7, 2014
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In my 5-Star review of Fr. Leonard's book, "Where the Hell is God?", I said it was the best book I'd ever read. This is #2. The number of insights per page is enormous.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Mark on October 7, 2014
Format: Paperback
Australian Jesuit Richard Leonard’s previous book, the provocatively titled “Where the Hell is God?”, was a modern attempt at ‘theodicy’. However the book did not arise from some academic interest in the question of how God can allow a world to exist within which there is suffering, but from the experience of sharing in the anguish of his sister’s car accident that resulted in her quadriplegia.

The book reached a wide and appreciative audience, both in Australia and internationally. In a review, I used Leonard’s criticism of a bishop who celebrates a Mass to pray for rain as an example of how “Where the Hell is God?” is not a book all readers would agree with. Responses that Fr Leonard received from readers on that aspect has led him to write a new book specifically on prayer.

“Why Bother Praying?” is not a manual of prayer techniques, but rather provides a rationale for why prayer is important, an introduction to the rich variety of prayer in Catholic belief and practice, and some wise advice for the life-long journey of prayer.

“One of the reasons some of us give up on prayer is because we may not have been introduced to its riches. Prayer is making space for God to love us, for us to hear that, and then, through the community of faith, to have the courage to return the compliment. ... This enables us to enter more deeply into a relationship with God who accompanies us through the events of our lives.”

Core principles that underscore Fr Leonard’s straight-shooting approach include: Some prayer is better than no prayer (“The perfect is the enemy of the good”); Prayer is an encounter not a performance; and “If it helps, do it; if it doesn’t, don’t”.

“Why Bother Praying?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By .... on May 13, 2014
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easy to read not what I expected. Events in the author's life has shaped his opinion on formal and informal prayer.
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Fr. Leonard discusses the needs for prayer, how different forms of prayer in the Church came to being, and adds his own stories as examples of the needs.
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By Camille Devaney on March 31, 2014
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He writes simply clearly, no,preaching but seems to write from lived reality, rather than do as I say not a ski do.
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