Saturday, March 4, 2006

Purpose-Driven Spirituality

Deacon Thomas Baker in Commonweal on Rick Warren's The Purpose-Driven Life
probably the biggest spiritual seller of this century.

Which is news to what must be the most oblivious magazine readers of this century.
I suspect most Commonweal readers have never seen the book, but more than 25 million Americans have bought it in hardcover.

How can almost one out of ten Americans buy a book on a spiritual topic, yet the editors of Commonweal publish a piece assuming Commonweal readers are unaware of it? They know their readers well.
Before you write it off as just another Wal-Mart bestseller you'll never understand, I should point out that even at my upper-middle-class Catholic parish, many people love this book, and several parishioners even head over to the local Evangelical church to participate in Purpose-Driven discussion groups.

He then critiques purpose-driven spirituality as fine when your life goes according to plan, but not suited for hard times or tragedy. Those Wal-Mart shoppers just don't understand what it can be like to suffer, the way Commonweal subscribers do.


Blogger TS said...

Nobody says disconnected better than Commonweal. That they assume their readers are unfamiliar with that book reads almost like parody.

12:14 PM  
Blogger Dad29 said...

The book has encountered some negative reviews from genuinely orthodox Catholics--

But if Commonweal doesn't like it, they will use a far different rationale, I'm sure.

7:17 PM  

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