Friday, September 16, 2016

I Burned for Your Peace (Ignatius Press)

If you have ever been to college and taken an Introductory Philosophy class, then you are somewhat familiar with St. Augustine's Confessions. In fact, it is widely regarded as one of the great works of Western Civilization. Knowing that, well-know Catholic author and philosopher Dr. Peter Kreeft recently released a book called I Burned for Your Peace. The book is intended as a commentary on some of the major points of St. Augustine's Confessions. It is not intended to be a scholarly examination of the whole work, because that would take multiple volumes to cover. If you plan on reading this book side-by-side with Confessions, Dr. Kreeft used Frank Sheed's translation, but if you don't want to buy a new copy, you'll be fine with the one you have.

Dr. Kreeft begins his book with four introductions. The first is an introduction to his book. The second and third are introductions to St. Augustine and Confessions. And the fourth is an introduction to reading Confessions. In the first chapter, we see that Augustine begins his work in dialogue with God. The next  few chapters walk us through stages of his life - infancy, childhood, adolescence, and young adulthood. In these chapters, we get a glimpse of his sinful and rebellious nature. We then see part of St. Augustine's first conversion in reading Cicero and his initial reading of Scripture with him not being ready to receive it yet. This leads us St. Augustine's three big problems/obstacles to Christianity (problem of evil, problem of God, and problem of morality). The book continues by speaking of the role his mother, St. Monica, had in his conversion and eventually concludes with the theological conclusions St. Augustine discovered.

Reading through Dr. Kreeft's book, I am reminded of the first time I encountered Confessions. Going to a secular university, my professor merely glossed over it and didn't unpack of much of it as I would have liked. I believe if I had this book available then, I would have walked away much more knowledgeable of this great work. Therefore, I invite you, if you have never read Confessions or it has been a while, pick up a copy of this book to read with it. You will find a lot in the book that you missed in your initial reading and you will be a lot more appreciative.

This book was provided to me for free by Carmel Communications in exchange for an honest review. If you found this review helpful, please click here and hit Yes!