The Twenty-Four Conferences or Collations of St John Cassian, written in the early fifth century, were to have a tremendous impact in the West on the spirituality of monastics and other Religious. A classic of spirituality, they were compulsory reading for St Benedict's monks, the favourite spiritual reading of St Dominic in the late twelfth century and were treasured by St Philip Neri in the sixteenth. The Collations were likened by St John Cassian himself to the twenty-four elders of the Apocalypse, who lay their crowns before the Lamb. Whatever glory they have, they attribute it all to the Word of God made flesh, who speaks through them, as He speaks through Cassian their editor, and indeed, if God wills, through their translator Cassian and his companion Germanus interview a number senior monks and hermits, asking them about difficulties in prayer and in living the Christian life, and are given answers that display a surprising degree of psychological insight into human nature. Although these interviews were first written down for monks, there is much in them that can be applied to the spiritual life of all Christians. This new translation, by a Father of the Oxford Oratory, brings Cassian to life for the twenty-first century.
9780852448397 572 pages £25.00