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Timothy M. Gallagher
Over 100,000 readers have turned to Fr. Gallagher's Ignatian titles for reliable, inspirational, and clear explanations of some of the most important aspects of Christian spirituality. Whether you're a spiritual director, priest or minister, a longtime seeker, or a beginner, Fr. Gallagher's books can help you on your spiritual journey.
Timothy M. Gallagher, OMV, (frtimothygallagher.org), a Catholic priest, member of the Oblates of the Virgin Mary, retreat leader, Ignatian scholar, and international lecturer, holds a doctorate from the Gregorian University in Rome and is the author of several bestselling books, including The Discernment of Spirits and The Examen Prayer (both the topics of TV series). Fr. Gallagher lives in Boston.
(See guide on Gallagher's works below.)
WHICH IGNATIAN TITLE IS RIGHT FOR YOU?
When you need short, practical exercises for young and old:
An Ignatian Introduction to Prayer
Group leaders who are looking for practical exercises for groups, including groups who may not have much experience in spiritual development, will want to acquire An Ignatian Introduction to Prayer: Scriptural Reflections According to the Spiritual Exercises.
This book features forty short (two-page) Ignatian meditations, including scripture passages, meditative keys for entering into the scriptural story, and guided questions for reflection. These exercises are also useful for individual reflection both for experienced persons and beginners: beginners will recognize and resonate with some of the evocative passages from scripture; those familiar with Ignatian teaching will appreciate the Ignatian structure of the guided questions.
When your life is at a crossroads:
Discerning the Will of God
If you are facing a turning point in life, you know how difficult it can be to try to hear God’s will amid the noise of other people’s expectations and your own wishes. Ignatius of Loyola developed a series of exercises and reflections designed to help you in these times so that your decision can be one that conforms to God’s will for your life.
Discerning the Will of God: An Ignatian Guide to Christian Decision Making is a trustworthy guide to applying those reflections to your own particular circumstances. This guide, which does not require any prior knowledge of Ignatian spirituality, can be used by people of any faith, though some elements will be more directly applicable to Catholic readers.
When you want classic spiritual discipline to apply every day:
The Examen Prayer and Meditation and Contemplation
Individuals wanting to deepen their prayer lives using a spiritual discipline will find The Examen Prayer an important resource. The examen prayer is a powerful and increasingly popular practice for finding God’s hand in our everyday lives and learning to be receptive to God’s blessings. This easy-to-read book uses stories and examples to explain what the examen is, how you can begin to pray it, how you can adapt it to your individual life, and what its benefits for your life can be. Highly practical!
A second favorite is Meditation and Contemplation: An Ignatian Guide to Praying with Scripture. Anyone familiar with Ignatian spirituality has heard about meditation and contemplation. In this volume, Fr. Gallagher explains what is unique to each practice, shows how you can profit from both at different times in your spiritual life, and reveals some of the forgotten elements (such as the preparatory steps and colloquy) and how the structure can be adapted to your particular spiritual needs.
Because The Examen Prayer draws from the experiences of everyday life, it can stand on its own as a guide to the prayer of examen. Those looking to begin their practice of meditation and contemplation, which for Ignatius is always based on scripture, may choose their own scripture passages or draw from the forty examples in An Ignatian Introduction to Prayer, mentioned earlier.
When you’re ready to move more deeply into Ignatian thought:
The Discernment of Spirits and Spiritual Consolation
Spiritual directors, directees, and others who want to understand the deeper structures of Ignatian thought have come to rely on The Discernment of Spirits: An Ignatian Guide to Everyday Living, and Spiritual Consolation: An Ignatian Guide for the Greater Discernment of Spirits. The Discernment of Spirits leads us through Ignatius’s Rules for discernment, showing both their precise insight into the human soul and their ability to illustrate the real-life struggles of spiritual seekers today. As Fr. Gallagher writes, his practical goal is “to offer an experience-based presentation of Ignatius’s rules for discernment of spirits in order to facilitate their ongoing application in the spiritual life. This is a book about living the spiritual life.”
Because it forms the foundation for so many other aspects of Ignatian thought, The Discernment of Spirits has become Fr. Gallagher’s bestselling book and has been the basis for a TV series. Spiritual Consolation extends this same approach, interweaving stories and principles for a more profound understanding of Ignatius’s Second Rules for discernment.