Tuesday, 23 September 2014

A Calendar of Catholic Devotion, by Julien Chilcott-Monk

Julien Chilcott-Monk, A Calendar of Catholic Devotion: Daily Prayer with the Saints 2008 Canterbury Press

For those like me who are new to Catholicism, A Calendar of Catholic Devotion is an invaluable resource. Cradle Catholics might know when the major feast days are, but I certainly don't. This book enables me to know the most important feasts associated with each day of the year.

Each daily entry provides a reflection on each feast or the life of a saint, a passage from Scripture or quotation of a devotional work, some suggestions for prayer and a brief prayer to the saints.

Many days have several saints' feasts and the author had to make editorial decisions about which to include. Occasionally, she talks about her own favorites. A lot of the saints who are included are quite obscure and the reader is likely to be educated. Saints whose cults have been suppressed are not included, which is perhaps a little disappointing.

I can't help thinking the suggested prayers to the saints in this book are a little uninspiring. They tend to run along the lines of:

"Saint X, pray for all butchers/ bakers/ candlestick makers, and all places dedicated to your name."

That is all well, but what about invoking the saint for those qualities which he or she exemplifies? Nevertheless, I still find this a really helpful resource in my daily prayer.


  1. Thank you for your comments but the final prayers (mostly cut down by the editor!) are really only intended to guide the reader along the devotional path. The reader should develop the theme in his or her prayers.
    By the way, I am a man! Each month is introduced by the Duchess of Norfolk - a woman!
    Julien Chilcott-Monk

    1. I do beg your pardon!

      Thanks so much for dropping in and commenting on this.

      I can assure you that I have read your book nearly every day and I always regret it when I forget.