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Author Page for Fr. Benedict Groeschel, C.F.R. (1933-2014)

Fr. Benedict Groeschel, C.F.R., was beloved around the world for his bold and powerful witness to the Gospel. Over the course of a long and remarkable life, Fr. Groeschel tirelessly worked with the poor and needy, spoke to tens of thousands of Catholics, and wrote numerous articles and books, several of them published by Ignatius Press.

In May 1987 he founded, with eight other friars, the community of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal. The Community, which follows the Capuchian Tradition, now has over 135 friars and 30 sisters. It is dedicated to preaching reform within the Church and caring for the homeless in the South Bronx and Harlem sections of New York City, as well as in London, Limerick, Honduras and Nicaragua.

Fr. Groeschel was longtime Director for the Office for Spiritual Development for the Archdiocese of New York. In 1974 at the request of Terence Cardinal Cooke, he founded the Trinity Retreat in Larchmont, New York, which provides spiritual direction and retreats for clergy. John Cardinal O'Connor appointed him promoter of the cause of Canonization of the Servant of God, Terence Cardinal Cooke, in 1984.

Fr. Groeschel earned his doctorate in psychology from Columbia University in 1971 and was professor of pastoral psychology at St. Joseph's Seminary of the Archdiocese of New York and an adjunct professor at the Institute for Psychological Sciences in Arlington in Virginia. He also taught at Fordham University, Iona College, and Maryknoll Seminary.

He was also chairman of the Good Counsel Homes and the St. Francis House, which provides residence and programs for homeless young mothers and homeless youth. For fourteen years, Fr. Groeschel served as chaplain of the Children’s Village in Dobbs Ferry, New York.

Fr. Groeschel was host of the television talk program Sunday Night Live with Father Benedict Groeschel, which is broadcast on EWTN and wrote several books, including - Arise From Darkness: What to Do When Life Doesn't Make Sense, The Reform of Renewal, Rosary: The Chain of Hope, Still Small Voice: A Practical Guide on Reported Revelations, and The Drama of Reform, all published by Ignatius Press.

When Fr. Groeschel was nearly killed in a traffic accident in early 2004, tens of thousands prayed for his life. Miraculously, he lived. interviewed him and asked him about his recovery, what he has gone through since the accident, and his book, Praying To Our Lord Jesus Christ: Prayers and Meditations Through the Centuries. His book, The Tears of God, also addresses faith, sorrow, and personal catastrophe.

Over the last few years of his life Fr. Groeschel suffered from constant pain and he was eventually moved into St. Joseph's Home for the elderly in Totowa run by the Little Sisters of the Poor. He died on October 3, 2014, and was entombed in the crypt of the Most Blessed Sacrament Friary on October 12, 2014 following a funeral Mass at the Basilica Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Newark, New Jersey.

Fr. Benedict Groeschel's final book for Ignatius Press (Winter 2010):

I Am With You Always: A Study of the History and Meaning of Personal Devotion to Jesus Christ for Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant Christians

By Fr. Benedict J. Groeschel, C.F.R.

The devotional life of Christians over the two millennia since Jesus' birth has been one of motion, changing and growing in response to the challenges presented to the Church, the temperaments of newly baptized nations, and controversies about how we can and should relate to God. And yet the core of authentic Christian devotion has not changed--it remains today, as it was in the time of the Church Fathers, the trusting and personal encounter with Christ that is both open and foundational to the life of all Christian believers.

In this book the well-known spiritual writer and teacher Fr. Benedict Groeschel, C.F.R., surveys the development and trials of Christian devotion from the days of the martyrs until the twentieth century. Tracking it through the centuries and among "sadly divided branches of Christianity", he finds a commonality of experience and even of language that is constantly ignored among Christians themselves. By observing what "image of Christ" the canvas of common devotion portrays, he hopes we will move "not to discredit this image, but to sharpen it and make it more consistent with the New Testament and the ancient Church".

Though the devotional life is sometimes brushed off as unimportant in comparison to a theological understanding of Christ, Groeschel warns that such dismissal threatens to make distant, unknown and obscure the Savior who said "I am with you always." The answer instead is to draw near to Jesus in devotion and with authentic expressions of that devotion, which themselves help paint the image of Christ found concretely in revelation onto the minds and daily life of the devout.

Begun on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and the result of years of preparation and a whole life of guiding people as priest, public preacher, psychologist and spiritual director, this book will help Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant believers gain not only a comprehensive view of how pious Christians over the centuries have lived out their devotion to God, but the examples and perspective they need to live more devoutly today.

Fr. Groeschel's books published by Ignatius Press:

I Am With You Always
Tears of God
The Drama of Reform
Arise From Darkness: What to Do When Life Doesn't Make Sense
The Reform of Renewal
Rosary: The Chain of Hope
Still Small Voice: A Practical Guide on Reported Revelations
Praying To Our Lord Jesus Christ: Prayers and Meditations Through the Centuries

Book excerpts and interview with Fr. Benedict Groeschel:

The Importance of Knowing St. Joseph | Fr. Benedict Groeschel, C.F.R. | The Introduction to The Mystery of Joseph by Marie-Dominique Philippe, O.P.
Interview with Fr. Groeschel (June 2004)
Excerpts from The Rosary: Chain of Hope
The Church of Latter Day Sinners

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