Spiritual Life and Prayer: According to Holy Scripture and Monastic Tradition
by Mother Cécile Bruyère, First Abbess of Sainte-Cécile of Solesmes.
2016 Reprint of the English translation by the Benedictine nuns of Stanbrook Abbey, England,1900.
329 pages, 5.5 x 8.5 in., paperback bound
Born in 1845, at the age of eleven providential circumstances brought young Jenny Bruyère under the spiritual tutelage of Dom Prosper Guéranger, abbot of Saint-Pierre of Solesmes. Under his spiritual guidance she blossomed and became, at twenty-five, the foundress and first abbess of the Benedictine abbey of Sainte-Cécile of Solesmes. In her hidden contemplative life, Mother Cécile Bruyère eventually formed and guided souls with repercussions well beyond her monastery walls, furthering the spiritual edifice which Dom Guéranger had established.
From the preface to the first German printing, 1896:
“The present teatise on prayer was first of all printed privately… for the instruction of the daughters of St. Benedict. All souls, however, who are aiming at perfection may derive profit and edification from its pages. The spirit of the venerable Abbot Guéranger breathes through the whole work. What this distinguished man thought on the all-important subject of prayer, what he expressed in his conferences, and what he wrote in many parts of his classical work, “The Liturgical Year,” is found here systematically arranged. Some of the chapters are real masterpieces;…” – Mgr Paul Leopold Haffner, Bishop of Mayence, 1896.
From the preface by Mother Cécile Bruyère:
“The characteristic of our faith is that it ever tends to apply to ourselves all the truths that it teaches us. It has no theories which are not meant to be reduced to practice;… faith moulds only those who act according to their belief… It will not therefore be a matter of surprise to find in the following pages more principles than sentiments; truths destined to encourage action rather than to satisfy the mind. The author had no thought of feeding even the most legitimate curiosity, but of increasing in souls, even in this world, the desire of union with God, for the glory of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, who will be the object of their contemplation for all eternity.”