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Old Monk
Old Monk
Old Monk
Item#: B230
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Mary Lou Kownacki

For her morning meditation, Benedictine monk Mary Lou Kownacki read a poem from Han-shan’s classic, Cold Mountain, and then wrote a poem and short commentary in response. Old Monk is the result of that spiritual practice. Honest, humorous, poignant, inspiring, Old Monk invites us all to join the great dialogue of life.


“…she models the kind of mysticism that can unite one person with another despite the barriers of time, place, religion, gender and culture. –Spirituality & Health

“Kownacki’s writing connected me to a world crying out for the consequences of monastic prayer, to touch it and create a difference.” –Joyce Rupp, author

“I tried to read this book as slowly as possible so it would take a l-o-n-g time to get to the end. I was enthralled.” –David Budbill, poet

“A timeless and beautiful anthology of mystical poetry rooted in reality. I savored every poem like a sweet fruit. Ryokan and Mary Lou Kownacki meet across the centuries, their voices becoming one song, enlarging all life into a story of the sacred. This book distills all creation—its brokenness and beauty—into an experience of possibility, grace, and awe. Readers’ souls will emerge brighter for having brushed against the transparent beauty and depth of this extraordinary book.” –Edwina Gateley, poet

“I just finished reading Old Monk. I'm also an Old Marianist Monk, 62 years old, 43 years professed. I'm sitting here in my room abbey guest house. I'm on retreat. I couldn't resist just saying thank you for your words. They are so fresh, so honest. What else to say? Thank You says it all.
Your brother, Jack”

The March 2013 issue of Sojourners Magazine listed Old Monk by Mary Lou Kownacki in its “New and Noteworthy” column calling it “An unorthodox little devotional with wisdom for seekers and church pillars, artists and activists, monks and heretics.”

Old Monk was also reviewed by Spirituality and Practice, one of the finest websites for spirituality resources. It is the artistic creation of Mary Ann and Frederic Brussat. To read their review, TO READ THEIR REVIEW, Click here

Benetvision • softcover
112 pages