The Reed of God


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Format: Paperback

Publication date: April 21, 2020

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First published in 1944 and now a spiritual classic for Catholics across the globe, The Reed of God contains meditations on the humanity of Mary, Mother of God. British Catholic writer and artist Caryll Houselander lovingly explores Mary’s intimately human side, depicting Our Lady as a musical instrument who makes divine love known to the world. This refreshed edition is rich and rewarding reading for all Christians who wonder what Mary was really like.

While the Second Vatican Council led to a renewed interest in the theology and person of Mary, Caryll Houselander offered a simple yet profound reflection on the Mother of God almost fifteen years before the council began.

Confronting the static, surreal “Madonna of the Christmas card,” Houselander provides instead an intuitive, warmly human, and approachable image of the Mother of God. Through the central image of a reed that is played for music, Houselander demonstrates how Mary chose to make herself an instrument for the divine plan, giving her inmost being to the proclamation of God’s greatness. In sharing her distinctive vision of Mary, Houselander offers the Mother of God as a model for all people seeking to be instruments of the Divine.

The essays and poems in The Reed of God also reflect on the mysteries of Mary’s life and her impact on salvation history. In the book’s four parts, Houselander explores key events of Mary’s life, including her fiat, finding Jesus in the Temple, and the Assumption, as well as the themes of fruitful emptiness and the eternal search for union with God.

Product Details

Pages: 192

Trim size: 5 x 7 inches

ISBN: 9780870612404

Imprint: Christian Classics

Recommended Listening

Our Lady of Guadalupe with Geovanne GarciaThe Indispensable Role of Women in the Church with Jessica McMillanMary in the Life of a Priest with Fr. Anthony SciarappaImmaculate, Miraculous Mary with Michael O’Neill
  • “Life-changing.”

    “The best book I've ever read about Mary. It is life-changing.”

    Haley Stewart
    Catholic blogger, podcaster, and author of The Grace of Enough

  • “Take these words to heart.”

    “Such a work can only come from a deep and abiding love for Mary. Take these words to heart, and there Jesus will be conceived in you.”

    Curtis A. Martin
    Founder and CEO of FOCUS

  • “Inspirational.”

    “Caryll Houselander has profoundly influenced my spirituality. Although written decades ago, her message continues to offer resonance and inspiration for those seeking a closer relationship to Christ in daily life.”

    Joyce Rupp
    Author of Open the Door

  • “No better entrée into Marian devotion.”

    “There may be no better entrée into Marian faith and devotion than Caryll Houselander’s The Reed of God.”

    Msgr. Michael Heintz
    Mount St Mary’s Seminary
    Emmitsburg, Maryland

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Foreword to the Book
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