We were glad to welcome Father Lawrence back from his travels and to hear a bit about his experiences. Such a joy to have him back!
Discussion of the book began by touching on some difficulties with its frequent mention of persons met, visited, and/or helped by Gerard, and those who were of help to him. Some members found this initially confusing, and one found it quite off-putting. We went on to consider who were the people Gerard was calling “schismatics”, and why he found them “much more difficult to move”. Talking about the dangers people faced, both personal and social, we could understand, to some extent, why people would change their religion based on the command of the king or queen. We also talked about the differences between that society, where religion was very important and indeed a way in which an individual might find his identity, and today’s society.
From members talking about Gerard’s insistence on an exact and well-considered examination of conscience for those wanting to convert, Father Lawrence went on to talk about making a general confession, and in answer to some questions gave details about the circumstances in which a person might make a general confession.
In choosing a book for July, we considered that perhaps we have had enough history for a while, and chose the autobiography “The Story of a Soul” by St. Therese of Lisieux.