Item description for The Virtue Driven Life by Benedict J. Groeschel...
Overview Since when is being called "virtuous" an insult? "She's quite virtuous" - sounds rather prissy, doesn't it? Father Benedict J. Groeschel, C.F.R., would agree. It's a word that's gotten a bad rap, misused and misunderstood even by great thinkers, philosophers, and theologians, and mocked in the cynical soundbites of the media. Rediscover virtue as it should be understood in our lives. With wit, warmth, and wisdom, Father Groeschel reintroduces the Seven Cardinal Virtues of prudence, justice, temperance, ortitude, faith, hope, and charity. One by one he makes them meaningful for modern men and women, shaking off the dusty mantle of pretentiousness and demonstrating how each has a real role in a whole and holy life. Father Groeschel's charming conversational style entertains even as he educates and challenges us. History, politics, an advertisement, the neighbor down the street ... all are reference points for Father Groeschel as he explores the meaning of each virtue for Christians today. By the end of the book, you will understand that being labeled virtuous is the ultimate compliment.
Publishers Description Since when is being called ?virtuous? an insult? ?She's quite virtuous? ? sounds rather prissy, doesn?t it? Father Benedict J. Groeschel, C.F.R., would agree. It's a word that's gotten a bad rap, misused and misunderstood even by great thinkers, philosophers, and theologians, and mocked in the cynical soundbites of the media. Rediscover virtue as it should be understood in our lives. With wit, warmth, and wisdom, Father Groeschel reintroduces the Seven Cardinal Virtues of prudence, justice, temperance, fortitude, faith, hope, and charity. One by one he makes them meaningful for modern men and women, shaking off the dusty mantle of pretentiousness and demonstrating how each has a real role in a whole and holy life. Father Groeschel's charming conversational style entertains even as he educates and challenges us.
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Benedict Joseph Groeschel, C.F.R. (born July 23, 1933) is a Catholic priest, retreat master, author, psychologist, activist and former host of the television talk program Sunday Night Prime, which is broadcast on the Eternal Word Television Network. He has also hosted several serial religious specials in addition to Sunday Night Prime. He is the founder of the Office for Spiritual Development for the Catholic Archdiocese of New York as well as a former associate director of Trinity Retreat and a former executive director of the St. Francis House. He is professor of pastoral psychology at St. Joseph's Seminary in New York and an adjunct professor at the Institute for Psychological Sciences in Arlington, Virginia. He is one of the founders of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal.
Groeschel has received wide public attention through his preaching engagements, writing and television appearances. He is the author of over 30 books and has recorded more than 100 audio and video series. He publishes articles in several Catholic magazines on a monthly basis and posts a weekly meditation on the Oratory of Divine Love website. His most recent books include The Tears of God (2008), Questions and Answers About Your Journey to God (2007), The Virtue Driven Life (2006), Why Do We Believe? (2005) and There Are No Accidents: In All Things Trust in God (2004). His weekly television program, Sunday Night Live with Father Benedict Groeschel, offers a mix of interviews, answering viewer questions and discussing spiritual and social matters relating to the Catholic faith.
Groeschel has also been a highly visible Catholic activist, first in the civil rights movement. He publicly criticizes insulting depictions of the church in popular culture and the media. In September 1998, he led protests outside of an Off-Broadway theater in New York City against the production of Terrence McNally’s play Corpus Christi. In his 2002 book, From Scandal to Hope, he accused The Boston Globe, The New York Times and The San Francisco Chronicle of revealing anti-Catholic prejudice in their respective coverage of the sexual abuse scandal that disrupted the church. "Seldom in the history of journalism have I seen such virulent attacks on any institution that is supposed to receive fair treatment in the press", he wrote.
In April 2005, he again questioned the anti-Catholic sentiments of the United States media by charging distorted coverage of Joseph Ratzinger, who had become Pope Benedict XVI. Groeschel noted that the new pope had "been very badly abused by the American media", adding that the pontiff’s World War II biography was negatively distorted and incorrect reports of his personality were published.
On January 11, 2004, Groeschel was struck by an automobile while crossing a street in Orlando, Florida. He received a head injury and broken bones and over a four hour period, had no blood pressure, heartbeat or pulse for about 20 minutes. A few days later the trauma triggered a near-fatal heart attack. While he was recovering from his injuries he collaborated with John Bishop on the book, There Are No Accidents: In All Things Trust in God. He broadcast his first live program on EWTN on October 24, 2004. Although the accident left him with limited use of his right arm and difficulty in walking, he was back preaching and giving retreats by the end of 2004 and has continued to keep a full schedule. As he told the New York Times nearly four years after his accident: “They said I would never live. I lived. They said I would never think. I think. They said I would never walk. I walked. They said I would never dance, but I never danced anyway.”
Benedict J. Groeschel currently resides in Larchmont, in the state of New York. Benedict J. Groeschel was born in 1951.
Reviews - What do customers think about The Virtue Driven Life?
disapointing Jul 9, 2008
I was hoping for a practical guide to practicing virtue. Unfortunately, most of this book is just philosophical ramblings on the virtues. Sometimes they are interesting, but occasionally they are the types of ignorant cliches that turn people off to virtue and religion. Did you know that, "We are rich because someone else is poor." (p. 47) Probably not if you passed Econ 101. This is not Christianity...it's Marxism. The theological version of this untruth would be, 'People are in heaven because others are in hell.'
Or how about this gem of moral equivalence:
"When Roman civilization was in decline, the emperors provided bread and circuses. The circuses were combats in which gladiators killed one and other and Christians were fed to the lions. Now the equivalent in violence can be seen on television. We condemn the Romans for their barbarism, but are we any better? Don't we have a constant diet of death and destruction for entertainment?" (p.56)
That's not deep...that's retarded. Perhaps TV shows should have a disclaimer that says that the death and destruction portrayed is not really real (no Christians, or others, were harmed in the making of this movie). Or does that matter? These sort of sophomoric musings on the nature of virtue only adds confusion to an already complex subject.
Despite the occasional gaffs, there are some good insights and observations. Many of them are in the form of quotes from other great Christian thinkers.
Quintessential Quick Read, Faith into Action by Grace Mar 29, 2008
An absolutely clear and easy to read format gets to the heart of virtue in seconds with practical points at every step. What's best is knowing that the author is one who practices what he writes, all the while reminding us of the need to convert daily from ourselves and selfish tendencies toward the unself-centered love of God and neighbor. So much is packed into this little book for all ages and stages of spiritual, yet practical development of mind and will. This would make a helpful group study. Every teacher, parent, student, subway, doctor and dentist office should keep a copy out. Edith Burns would approve heartily. Oh, and this is NOT a works-based salvation worldview. The worldview expressed is based on what God has made, body, soul and matter and God's gift of grace which blesses all regardless of whether or not they believe OR love. The task of responding to this grace is that of the individual reader, a response which either receives and willingly accepts the grace OR ignores and disregards it since humans are not puppets or robots by design.
Breaking open the true path to happiness Mar 4, 2008
The title may be a play on Rick Warren's Purpose Driven Life (apparently an editorial decision), but the content is both solid and time tested. Father Groeschel takes a look at the seven virtues, and explains the role of each of them in the life of a Chrisitan. He gives multiple examples of how each virtue is lived out, and insights on how to reach for them in our own lives. This is a straightforward guide on reaching a focus which will more readily help the reader attain the focus and peace they desire.
Great "How to" book May 27, 2007
This is an extraordinary book. It has both explanations of the virtues and suggestions about how to incorporate them into a person's life. The tone is personal. It seems like the author is talking directly and easily with the reader.
Easy, Fast Goal-Oriented Text for Any Christian Mar 21, 2007
Groeschel does not disappoint, if you are an avid fan or a first time reader, this text will present very realistic situations for an expansion of spiritual growth and provide attainable options. The chapters are concise and this is a book one could space out over time or read in a full setting. Groeschel once again challenges the reader to lead a more fully Christian life and uses his psychological background at times to relate to what frustrates and beseiges the modern day person searching for a closer realtionship to God. Excellent as a retreat companion or a Lenten guide without gloss or heavy duty theological phrasing.