Category Archive: News

  1. Executive Director’s Message

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    Karen PascalUpdate from Karen Pascal
     Executive Director, Henri Nouwen Society

    Dear Friends,

    I have just returned from a visit to Henri Nouwen’s gravesite in Richmond Hill, Ontario. The grave – like Henri himself – is humble and simply adorned. But today it was refreshed and brightened with flowers brought by those who had gathered to commemorate the 20th anniversary of his death.
    For most of us, we first met Henri through one of his books.

    In the prologue to Beyond the Mirror, Henri wrote: “Writing was one way to let something of lasting value emerge from the pains and fears of my little, quick passing life. Each time life required me to take a new step into unknown spiritual territory, I felt a deep, inner urge to tell my story to others – perhaps as a need for companionship but maybe, too, out of an awareness that my deepest vocation is to be a witness to the glimpses of God I have been allowed to catch.”

    And what a rich and enduring legacy Henri has given us through his writing.

    We are so honored and excited to share Henri’s writing with new audiences. Love, Henri – Letters on the Spiritual Life, released on October 4th, is a collection of over 200 unpublished letters Henri wrote to friends and colleagues, as well as to many strangers who wrote to him asking for his advice and guidance. This deeply personal body of writing offers wisdom and practical insight into what it really means to live life authentically and spiritually.

    Gabrielle Earnshaw, our Nouwen archivist and scholar, edited this first book of letters. Accompanied by actor Joe Abbey-Colborne, Gabrielle gave an outstanding and memorable presentation at the June conference.

    Click here for a little taste of this unique and moving lecture on Henri’s letters.

    Perhaps the most exciting opportunity on our horizon is the new Caregiving Initiative we are launching in partnership with Church Health from Memphis, TN. Together, we are in the process of producing a new devotional and support materials geared specifically for caregivers.

    We will keep you posted as this much-needed outreach to caregivers continues to develop.

    In the year ahead, please consider partnering with us in our effort to get Henri’s books into the hands of a new generation of readers and spiritual seekers. How can you help us with this? Check that your local library has good selection of Henri’s books available. Invite your friends and family to subscribe to our free Daily Meditations as a way to introduce them to Henri’s writing. And be sure to forward to others the ones that are especially meaningful to you. (Many of our subscribers were introduced to Henri this way!)

    We are always hearing from readers who tell us so how deeply Henri Nouwen has spoken into their lives. Perhaps that is your story as well. We would love to hear how the life and work of Henri Nouwen has been a vital resource to you.

    May you discover all God has for you and be renewed and restored as you search for more.

    With gratitude,
    Karen Pascal

  2. The Surprisingly Difficult Art of Not Being a Whiny Old Man by Mickey Maudlin

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    MAY 23, 2016

    When I was a young man, I attended a dinner celebrating the career of an elderly and famous evangelical leader. After the meal, the honoree was invited to speak, where he reiterated one of the core themes of his career (a ruthless commitment to “true truth”) and how the current state of the evangelical world fell far short on this commitment and how everything was going to pot.

    I left feeling very sad for the speaker, whom I had looked forward to meeting and celebrating. Two commitments sprang from that evening. First, that I had to be careful not to become a fossil to my past but to be an active participant with the ever-changing present. I did not want to become a whiny old man whom younger people feel sorry for. Second, I realized that once I was grouped with the “mature” age bracket (which seemed “way in the future” at the time), I had a responsibility to instill hope and excitement in the generation following and not merely bemoan all the ways the present falls short of the past. I realized that the speech that night was actually a breach of trust by the leader to those coming after. I wanted to avoid that mistake.

    Fast-forward twenty-five years to when “way in the future” has become “now.” I still hold to those two commitments, but I have been surprised at how difficult it is at times to stay true to them. For instance, conversations about the vital role of “Instagram” or “WhatsApp” to today’s ministries, or discussions about the latest reality shows or about new ways of accessing these media, and I can soon feel “out of it.” And as I repeatedly hit my head against the institutional church’s stubborn habit of choosing fear over love and worry over faith, I admit to flirting with despair over how everything is “going to pot.”

    That is when an internal warning bell goes off, one activated that night many years ago, which tells me that I cannot allow myself to stay in that place. I need help. And so, because of another lifelong habit, I turn to authors for both wisdom and encouragement. Recently, I have benefited greatly from Peter Enns’s reminder that faith is learning how to trust Jesus more than getting everything figured out correctly (see The Sin of Certainty) and from Norman Wirzba’s metaphor of seeing church as a difficult boot camp that is training us to love (see Way of Love). These have helped me stay on track.

    But I have been especially encouraged recently by revisiting a past literary mentor, Henri Nouwen. On the twentieth anniversary of Nouwen’s passing, HarperOne has released an anthology of his work. Entitled The Spritual Life, it collects eight of his books: Intimacy, A Letter of Consolation, Letters to Marc About Jesus, The Living Reminder, Making All Things New, Our Greatest Gift, The Way of the Heart, and Gracias.

    (To continue reading, please click here.)

    Nouwen Promo FB Image_2_ 2016

  3. Nouwen Reissues for UK Readers

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    Six of Nouwen’s Best Books Get a UK ReissueReissues

    Nouwen readers in the UK can look forward to reissues of some of Henri Nouwen’s most significant, acclaimed and well-oved works from publishers Darton, Longman and Todd.

    For information on the reissues and a host of other books by and about Henri Nouwen – as well as a beautifullly penned introduction to Henri by our own Sue Mosteller – go to