Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Wisconsin author publishes final chapter of Archbishop Sheen book for free online

Driven and sustained by his daily holy hour before the Blessed Sacrament, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen lived an intense life of holiness, zeal to save souls and Christian love that helped make him the most influential Catholic in 20th-century America, biographer Thomas C. Reeves says.

Reeves has released a previously unpublished conclusion to his 2002 Sheen biography, America's Bishop: The Life and Times of Fulton J. Sheen (Encounter Books). The concluding chapter, titled "Living Intensely," covers Venerable Sheen's spirituality, his inspiration and how others viewed his life. While Reeves does not directly promote Sheen as a candidate to be raised to the altars, his book's concluding chapter is a very tidy summation of Sheen's merits for sainthood. Reeves is making the chapter available for free on the internet, and has donated it for inclusion in his papers at Marquette University.

"To an extraordinary degree, his mind was on God," Reeves wrote of Sheen (1895-1979), the prolific author and Catholic evangelist best remembered for his 1950s television series, "Life is Worth Living." "This supernatural approach to life activated and sustained his enormous energy. He said late in life, 'the secret of my power is that I have never in fifty-five years missed spending an hour in the presence of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. That’s where the power comes from. That’s where sermons are born. That’s where every good thought is conceived.' "

Sheen's commitment to keeping a holy hour began on the day of his ordination on September 20, 1919 and lasted until the day of his death on December 9, 1979. He was clearly devoted to the practice, but he viewed it not as a devotion but "a sharing in the work of redemption." For many decades, he urged brother priests, religious and all the faithful to make a daily holy hour.
 continue at Catholic World Report

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