Recovering Benedict

Twelve-Step Living and the Rule of Benedict

John Edward Crean Jr.

Oct/2020, 160 Pages, Paperback, 5.5 x 8.5

ISBN-13: 9781640653269



Recovering Benedict encourages us to nourish our physical and spiritual lives using the Rule of Benedict and the twelve-step recovery principles of Alcoholics Anonymous.

As the “father of Western monasticism,” Benedict pulled together various strands of monastic spirituality into a single handbook for holiness. Alcoholics Anonymous presented an equally innovative way to address alcoholism based on twelve steps drawn from numerous spiritual sources. While it took a sixth-century Italian collating various sources to produce a handbook for spiritual life, it likewise took a twentieth-century American to pull together the spiritual principles to recover one’s physical life. John E. Crean, Jr. brings both traditions together in one handbook for living: daily meditations are inspired by the down-to-earth wisdom of the Rule of Benedict, and AA’s template for sobriety and humbleness.

A thoughtful daily devotional for all who wish for deeper healing, for personal use, or group study.

The Very Reverend Canon John Crean is Dean Emeritus of the Diocese of Western Michigan. He has taught at Yale, the University of Wisconsin, Madison, the University of Hawaii, and at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan. For many years, John has published and presented scholarly papers on the Rule of Saint Benedict. He also served both as a coeditor of MAGISTRA, A JOURNAL OF WOMEN’S SPIRITUALITY IN HISTORY. He is currently a “reader” (scholar) at the Huntington Library in San Marino, CA, researching and publishing on ecclesiastical history. An oblate of Saint Boniface Benedictine Abbey in Munich, Germany, John has also been personally involved in twelve-step recovery work since 2003. He lives in Quinta, California.

“Thanks to John Crean’s keen eye to the connections between the Steps and the Rule, we now have not only a great introduction to Benedict, but also a daily practice that we can add to our program. Incorporating even a few of the great saint’s disciplines will most certainly enrich our recovery.” —Verne Becker, General Editor, Recovery Devotional Bible

“There are loads of contemporary commentaries on the Rule of Benedict . . . few do link twelve-step and Benedictine themes, but Rev. John Crean’s book may be one of a kind. He uses the familiar breakdown of the Rule into small segments meant to be read daily over a four-month period, inserting his commentary after each section.” —Joan Ridley, O.S.B., American Benedictine Review

“John Crean has done a great service to all those who find themselves unable to change their self- and other-destructive behavior by melding Benedictine and twelve-step spirituality. This book is inviting to anyone who wants to find peace in this deeply disturbing time.” —William A. Barry, S.J.

“Rev. Crean’s prayers and reflections are heartfelt, offering both solace and challenge for the reader.” —Sister Judith Sutera, OSB, Benedictine Monastery of Mount St. Scholastica

“I think this book should be mandatory reading. I endorse it with my whole heart!” —J. Jon Bruno, retired Bishop of Los Angeles

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