With immense joy, the International General Council announces the release of two new works written by our beloved Father Andrés Motto of the Congregation of the Mission, who serves our Society as international spiritual advisor. With these two, there are now 10 books under the authorship of Father Motto. The members of the General Council recommend the promotion and wide dissemination of these books to Vincentians throughout the world. Following is a summary of the books:
UTOPIA AND MADNESS IN THE RENAISSANCE: THE THOUGHTS OF THOMAS MORE AND ERASMUS OF ROTTERDAM
This book invites us to learn about the life and thoughts of two friends who were great thinkers. Many ideas are expressed in this publication, but the focus is on two concepts that are always of interest: madness and a better world. Can they be linked? Although the book is about the past, it is written from the present. That is, its purpose is to leave us keys to improve our lives.
An excellent read on its own, this book is also part of a “History of Philosophy” that the author is publishing in several volumes. It is a history of thought written with scientific rigor, in a pleasant way and from Vincentian and Latin American viewpoints, although this is not always stated explicitly.
This book is also an invitation to get involved in social issues. By analyzing the past, we feel obliged to work for another history that dignifies and includes the poor in the present. A project that seems “crazy” but is possible. As a Vincentian, in every book, Father Motto tries to keep in mind the cries of the most unfortunate of all times.
If More and Erasmus give us some keys to achieve a more honorable present, we are grateful for them. Thomas More and Erasmus of Rotterdam leave us interesting suggestions, both in their description of where the social evils lie and in offering us some solutions. We will take a trip into the past that will inspire us in the construction of a better world. For as a song by Joaquín Sabina says: “Life is made of rubble and ashes that continue to burn.”
The book can be found on Amazon:
SERENE AVAILABILITY, PRUDENCE AND MERCY IN SAINT VINCENT DE PAUL
This book focuses on virtue, which helps us individually to be better persons.
Moreover, it becomes a moral value that unifies the vital energy of the person. But it goes beyond that, because when it is well thought out, virtue opens us to the cries and pain of others, to help them and to seek solutions. Virtue is not a superficial feeling or a punctual action; rather, it assists us to solidly seek the common good.
In this publication, Vincent de Paul is the teacher, since his way of teaching virtue is pleasant and approachable. To learn about virtue, it is not enough to know all its elements, beginning with its definition, but it is also necessary to see how it is practiced and how a person is motivated to carry out this moral virtue. Saint Vincent, by uniting these elements, postulates the practice of virtue as a form of wisdom.
In this book, three specific virtues are studied. Saint Vincent explains holy indifference, which perhaps today would be better called “serene availability”. This virtue allows us to live in peace in the midst of daily activities. Then, the author refers to prudence, a virtue of enormous importance that helps us solve numerous problems. He ends with mercy, which allows us to strengthen the exercise of charity. At the same time, it shows us the true face of God.
After explaining these virtues based on Saint Vincent’s teaching, Father Motto reiterates their importance for those of us living in the 21st century and explains that they were chosen because they are virtues that help us to live better lives and solve many problems.
The book is available from Editorial La Milagrosa: