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The Journey Never Ends

The Journey Never Ends

How to Prepare a Spiritual Will 

Author: Mary Petrosky, F.M.M.

Foreword by: Thomas Lynch

Afterword by: F. Edward Coughlin, O.F.M.

Price: $9.95

Format: Booklet

Pages: 96

Trim size: 6 x 9 inches

ISBN: 978-1-59471-805-2

Imprint: Ave Maria Press

On-sale date: March 30, 2018

More Bereavement, Death and Dying, Ministry and Pastoral Planning, Reference


In the first book of its kind specifically for Catholics, theologian, spiritual director, and social worker Sr. Mary Petrosky, F.M.M., shows how a spiritual will—a document that outlines your values, intentions, and hopes for the future—can help you focus on what’s most important in your life. As you grow older, it will be something you’ll want to share with those you love. 

The Journey Never Ends guides you through the process of preparing a spiritual will as an expression of your life’s intentions. If you are a Catholic or Christian of another background, you will find this a useful tool for creating the kind of life you want to live now in order to positively impact the world around you.  In addition, like a traditional will, it will help you create a legacy for your family.

Petrosky has helped people on three continents find joy and meaning in their lives and purpose and understanding in their deaths through her work. Able to communicate theological ideas in everyday language, Petrosky organizes spiritual will-making around a theology of remembering, taking as her inspiration the words of Jesus: "Do this in remembrance of me."

She provides a variety of sample wills to illustrate various approaches you can take. In the final chapter of the book, Petrosky will guide you to write your own spiritual will with simple, clear, inspirational prompts and examples. The document is something that could be shared with family, friends, and colleagues later in life.

Following the teachings of St. Francis of Assisi, who lived life with joy and welcomed his death with openness and optimism, Petrosky guides you  in how to best appreciate the art of living—and the way of dying. 


"A reliable spirit guide."

"The Journey Never Ends responds to the hunger, shared by all of us, to be known intimately and authentically and serves as a reliable spirit guide for fellow pilgrims making their way, generation after generation, to the ones we love."

From the foreword by Thomas Lynch
Poet, essayist, and author of The Undertaking

"Courageous and life-affirming."

"We have all been told to give away our lives, but few tell us how to give away our deaths just as generously. What a courageous and life-affirming idea! Mary Petrosky is your good guide here and in ways that you perhaps never imagined. One wonders why dozens of books have not been written on this very important subject."

Rev. Richard Rohr, O.F.M.
Author of Falling Upward

"An oasis book."

"This is a small spiritual oasis amid the expansive modern secular desert. The enlivening questions Mary Petrosky asks reminds me of ones posited by Abraham Joshua Heschel. The themes she puts forth call to mind Henri Nouwen and Joyce Rupp. However, the suggestions made on how to write a 'spiritual will' are guided by her own life—born of more than sixty years as a woman religious committed to prayer, honesty, authenticity, and of course as a Franciscan, compassionate service. On a quiet evening or a break during the week please enter the oasis she has provided for you. This oasis book will help you not to miss what could be the heart of the remainder of your life and to become more keenly aware of the particular gift you are to others."

Robert J. Wicks
Author of Riding the Dragon

"A beautiful volume."

"It is joy to read Mary Petrosky’s very accessible guide to planning a spiritual will. Her own religious life experience has shaped a beautiful volume with warm, elegant suggestions on how to organize the reader’s plans for a prayerful legacy."

Anne H. McCormick
Trustee of the Thomas Merton Legacy Trust

"A treasury of Franciscan Wisdom."

"Mary Petrosky's book is a treasury of Franciscan wisdom about how looking ahead to a world where I will no longer be present can help me live more deeply in this world, live more alive to the beauty of life around me, live more deeply into the mystery of the God who grounds my being and invites me to a life of love."

William R. Burrows
Research Professor of Missiology
New York Theological Seminary


"A guide to a valuable way of passing on our deepest self to family and friends."

Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality & Practice

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