This is a little book whose time has come-again. Published the same year Alisdair McIntyre called for a new Benedict at the end of After Virtue
, Derrick's book applies St. Benedict's virtues not just to Europe as a whole, but to the West, and not just to the West in the abstract, but to our families and our homes. The Benedictine virtue he is most after is Peace, by which neither Derrick nor St. Benedict mean merely the absence of war or violence. Under the rubric of peace, Derrick discusses language, courtesy, simplicity, leisure, stability, community, and the goodness of nature. St. Benedict and the Rule of Peace
always have a solution to the problem modern Western culture has with attaining these ideals. Readers of George Weigel's The Cube and the Cathedral
will certainly note Derrick's urgency twenty-five years ago, and hope even more earnestly that a second Benedict is on the way. New, unread copy, but covers do show some rubbing shelfwear.
An Eighth Day View:
St. Benedict has been called the Father of Western Monasticism and Patron of Europe. In this masterful work, Christopher Derrick brings forward the relevance of the values in the Rule of St. Benedict for the temporal as well as the spiritual future of the Western world.