“I owe more to Columba Marmion for
initiating me into things spiritual than to
any other spiritual writer.”
—Pope John Paul ii
Each year, the Church celebrates the Mysteries of Christ’s birth, life, death, and Resurrection. These are the seasons of Advent, Christmas, Lent, Holy Week, and Easter — and each is the source of a particular grace, each has its own special gift for us.
Christ in His Mysteries is Blessed Columba Marmion’s great meditation on the treasure-house of grace Christ offers to us in the Church’s liturgical year. Writing in the lively, compelling style that made him a favorite of Popes and lay faithful alike, Marmion explains:
• How the Mysteries of Jesus are now our mysteries — springs of living water we are meant to drink from.
• How Christ’s wisdom, His holiness, His strength, are now our wisdom, our holiness, our strength.
• How to acquire special graces during each liturgical season.
This new edition of Christ in His Mysteries features a Foreword by Fr. Benedict Groeschel (a long-time admirer of Blessed Columba Marmion), and an Introduction by Aidan Nichols, OP.
Fr. Nichols praises Alan Bancroft's “supremely natural and fluent translation.” Professor Lawrence Cunningham calls the new translation “readable and lively.”
Praise for Christ in His Mysteries
“The best and most important of Abbot Marmion’s books... This is a book of Christian spirituality that is a treasure for those who want to grow in holiness. It is a book that should be read several times... This book, in my opinion, ranks on the same level as the writings of St. Teresa of Avila and St. Francis de Sales.”
—Fr. Kenneth Baker, Editor Homiletic & Pastoral Review (Nov 2009)
“Splendid... Powerful... This classic of Christian spirituality can easily serve as an excellent introduction to Columba Marmion. My advice to the members of this generation is to run to the library for Marmion before you succumb to malnutrition. Read Christ in His Mysteries as soon as possible and you will get some idea of what you have been missing and where to find it.”
—Fr. Benedict Groeschel, writing in the Foreword
“Brilliant... The Liturgy is the way the Church as Bride gazes lovingly — and therefore penetratingly — at her Bridegroom, laying out her understanding of His heart: His purposes, the grand design of the Father which He carried out for our sake... In Christ in His Mysteries, Marmion (shows how) practicing Catholics will draw maximum profit from their meditation on the life of Christ if they contemplate its chief happenings through the lens provided by the Church’s liturgical year.
Readers of Christ in His Mysteries have opened to them the theological and spiritual treasures of Latin Catholicism at its best.”
—Aidan Nichols, OP, writing in the Introduction
“Christ in His Mysteries is spiritual reading at its best... Marmion demonstrates a profound knowledge not only of the sacred texts themselves but also of liturgical and patristic sources...
It is good to see this old classic back in print. Marmion was one of the most widely read spiritual authors in the period before Vatican II. His writings nourished many in his own day, and one hopes that a new generation of readers will be helped by his work to discover the unfolding of the mystery of Christ.”
—Lawrence S. Cunningham, Commonweal, June 5, 2009
“Christ in His Mysteries is an excellent choice for reading, meditation... To read [Marmion] is to find oneself in an intense, intimate conversation with this priest who radiates Christ in all his counsels. His tone is conversational, often lapsing into prayer, much as Teresa [of Avila] does in the course of her writing. Thus he draws his reader into prayer as well...
Whoever is seeking an accessible guide to the interior life, and the richness of Christ–in his Person, in his mysteries, and in his Eucharistic presence–Marmion is a sure guide.”
—Marie P. Loehr, Fellowship of Catholic Scholars Quarterly, Fall 2009
“I have just completed reading this excellent spiritual treasure from Dom Columba Marmion. Words cannot describe what this author has accomplished. Fr. Benedict Groeschel and Fr. Aidan Nichols, O.P. are excellent, but the praise actually due exceeds their wonderful comments.
I am a religious Brother of Holy Cross for 59 years and this has been one of my greatest discoveries. May God bless Zaccheus Press for reprinting this gem."
—Brother Thomas Frey, C.S.C.
—Fr. Charles Miller, Professor of Homiletics, St. John's Seminary
“He revealed the soul of the liturgy to us, by which I mean all those elements of doctrine and of life which it holds in reserve within the visible envelope of its rites and symbols: he is the theologian of the liturgy.”
—Dom Lambert Beauduin
“Luminous, profound and elevating doctrine... The very breath of life seems to come from his pages because all the truths he expounds have first been lived in his own soul.”
—Archbishop Guerry of Cambrai
“Always, at each of his pages, one is bathed in a spiritual atmosphere — an atmosphere of prayer. Hence also light, security and peace.”
—Dom Raymond Thibaut
The works of Marmion are “outstanding in the accuracy of their doctrine, the clarity of their style, and the depth and richness of their thought.”
—Pope Pius XII
“An outstanding master of the spiritual life.”
—Pope Paul VI
“He makes you touch God.”
About the Author
Born in Ireland, Blessed Columba Marmion served for several years as a priest in Dublin before finding a vocation to the monastery. He eventually became the Abbot of Maredsous Abbey, Belgium. One of the foremost spiritual masters of the 20th century, his books were translated into eleven languages and sold some 1.5 million copies.
Firmly rooted in the Bible, the Liturgy, and the writings of the Saints and Doctors of the Church, Marmion explores every aspect of Catholic doctrine, with penetrating insight. His writings are marked both by the remarkable clarity of their exposition, and by their keen psychological insight and sensitivity.
But his greatest contribution to modern spirituality was to restore Jesus Christ to His rightful place at the center of the Christian life — Christ as “the life of the soul” of every Christian: through faith, through the sacraments, and through the liturgy of the Church. Historians note that only a handful of books were universally read by the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council: the Bible, the Catechism of Trent, the 1917 Code, and the writings of Columba Marmion. His doctrine is recognizable in several Vatican II documents.
Many of his admirers believe Marmion will one day not only be canonized, but also declared a Doctor of the Church.
Blessed Columba Marmion: A Deadly Serious Spiritual Writer, an article by Christopher Zehnder, discusses the miraculous cure of an American woman diagnosed with cancer, which led to Blessed Columba’s Beatification by Pope John Paul II in 2000, and includes an interview with Fr. Benedict Groeschel about the relevance of Marmion's spirituality in today's world. To read the article, click here.