Selected Writings on Romano Guardini

Studies & Commentary

Selected Writings by Romano Guardini

Excerpts from Books

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Online Texts by Romano Guardini

  • The Church and The Catholic Translated by Ada Lane. Sheed & Ward, 1935. Available online from the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN).
  • The Humanity of Christ Translated from the German by Ronald Walls. Random House, 1964. Available online from the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN).
  • Meditations Before Mass translated from the German by Elinor Castendyk Briefs. Available online from the Catholic Information Network (CIN).
  • Sacred Signs Translated by Grace Branham. Pio Decimo Press, 1956. Available online from the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN).
  • The Spirit of the Liturgy translated by Ada Lane. Liturgical Catechesis Project.

Books by Romano Guardini

End of the Modern World
This work attempts mainly to depict in general outline the character and the promise of a new man, Mass Man, and a new world, a world of technological collectivism, which the author sees as emerging with the simultaneous demise of the modern age. Mass Man, alienated particularly from the concepts of Nature, Personality and Culture which had dominated the modern age since the time of the Renaissance, is seen as dangerously poised between the possibility of total destruction and the possibility of the most naked type of spiritual commitment. This is a book which expressly disavows either a progressivist or a reactionary attitude and attempts simply to face what seem to be the facts about ""post-modern"" man and his world. Highly recommended to all serious students of western civilization.

The Lord
The only true and unedited telling of the life of Christ—his life and times, in historical context, but not lacking the psychology behind his physical being and spirit. Unlike other books seeking to strip Jesus' story to reveal only the human being, Romano Guardini's The Lord gives the complete story of Jesus Christ—as man, Holy Ghost, and Creator. Pope Benedict XVI lauds Guardini's work as providing a full understanding of the Son of God, away from the prejudice that rationality engenders. Put long-held myths aside and discover the entire truth about God's only begotten Son.

The Art of Praying: The Principles and Methods of Christian Prayer

You've matured, but have your prayers? Has your understanding of prayer matured since you learned to pray at your mother's knee? Or, like many of us, do you continue to pray, year after year, as you were taught as a child? -- If your prayers are difficult or boring, your problem may not be so much failure of will (you do try to pray well) as lack of knowledge about how mature souls pray. Most of us have been doing it so long that we pray automatically without really thinking about it. The good news is that such problems are easily overcome! This remarkable book offers practical ways that you can improve your prayers today and grow closer to God.

Learning the Virtues that Lead You to God

There's more to goodness than keeping the Commandments: you've got to cultivate virtue, too, so that you please God in what you do not merely in what you don't do. In these pages, you'll learn countless ways to grow in such virtue.

The wise Msgr. Romano Guardini, a German priest hailed by Pope Benedict XVI as a great figure who aspired to the truth of God and to the truth of man, leads you from a consideration of virtue in itself to a discussion of each of the key virtues that will make you holy and lead you to God.

Meditations on the Christ
These pages do not tell you what Jesus did, you know that already! Instead, they take you into the mind and heart of the Son of God in a way you may not have thought possible. You will come to understand the inner logic of Jesus ministry: why Jesus life had to take the course it took, why He could not have been the earthly king many were expecting, and why He could not have conformed to the conventional ideas of a warrior, a hero, or even just a successful man.

You will even see why He had to be abandoned by everyone including His disciples, yet His Father remained close to Him then, just as He remains close to you now. Your new insight into why Jesus chose His own particular paths will illuminate the paths He is choosing for your now and will help you stay on those paths with gratitude and joy.

The Lord's Prayer

Spirit of the Liturgy

Eternal Life: What You Need to Know About Death, Judgment, and Life Everlasting

Italian-born German priest, Romano Guardini has written a book with honest answers to the hard questions about death and the afterlife. From his patient and thoughtful study of Scripture and Church teachings, he shares those things that will diminish grief, calm fears, and melt away doubts.

Preparing Yourself For Mass

Jesus Christus

This series of illuminating sermons on the life of Christ was delivered to students at Berlin University, where Romano Guardini (1885-1968) taught. He was a mentor to such prominent theologians as Hans Urs von Balthasar and Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI) and in this book, Guardini's teaching style comes truly alive. Delivered while writing his bestselling masterwork The Lord, these reflections inspire the reader to contemplate the presence that Jesus Christ manifested to the world. Guardini masterfully carries the reader beyond the stories and events of scripture to focus on the person of Jesus Christ. These meditations are accessible and clear, but maintain the theological depth found in Guardini's seminal work.

The Rosary of Our Lady

There’s more to the Rosary than most people think . . . and this book shows you just how much more. In these illuminating pages, Msgr. Romano Guardini explains clearly and simply why devotion to Mary is appropriate for all Christians and shows how repetition of the prayers in the Rosary — when done properly — is the ideal form of Marian devotion. He explains each of the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, revealing the meaning and importance of each, and suggests themes for deeper meditation. With this knowledge, you’ll find your Rosary prayers will be richer and more rewarding.

Letters from Lake Como: Explorations on Technology and the Human Race

This book collects a fascinating series of letters written by theologian-philosopher Romano Guardini in the mid-1920s in which he works out for the first time his sense of the challenges of humanity in a culture increasingly dominated by the machine. With prophetic clarity and unsettling farsightedness, Guardini's letters poignantly capture the personal implications and social challenges of living in the technological age — concerns that have now come to fruition seventy years after they were first raised.

Books on Romano Guardini

Romano Guardini: Reform from the Source

Romano Guardini (1885-1968) was one of the greatest Catholic minds of the twentieth century. He helped shape Catholic theology between the two world wars and after, as well as the thinking of many non-Catholics of the period. His influence contributed to the reforms of the Second Vatican Council and it continues to be felt through Pope Benedict, who, as a theologian, a cardinal and now as Pope, has drawn extensively on Guardini for inspiration. Indeed, Guardini was a major theological mentor of Benedict XVI, influencing the Pope from his understanding of Jesus to his writings on the sacred Liturgy, from his view of faith to his perspective on the modern world.

Romano Guardini: Reform from the Source, written by another great theological mind, Hans urs von Balthasar, presents a kind of “roadmap” to Guardini’s thought. As an introduction to Guardini, von Balthasar’s study is intended to challenge readers to take up Guardini’s own writings and to find in him the wisdom that has inspired so many others. Many of Guardini’s influential works are still in print today, works that cover a wide range of important spiritual, theological and moral issues.

“Romano Guardini was one of the most important interpreters of the modern Catholic experience, someone we need to engage again and again. This winsome precis by Hans Urs von Balthasar provides an ideal place to begin.” — R.R. Reno, Featured Editor, First Things, Professor of Theology, Creighton

Romano Guardini: A Precursor of Vatican II University of Notre Dame Press (December 1997)

In Romano Guardini: A Precursor of Vatican II, Robert Krieg tells the story of one of the most creative theologians in the twentieth century, who anticipated Vatican II's commitment to read "the signs of the times." No other volume in the English language offers such a complete portrait of Guardini and his world. Exploring the context in which Guardini learned and taught, Krieg introduces us to his pastoral leadership, particularly in the liturgical and youth movements. Drawing on the more than 75 books and 100 articles written by Guardini, this book then examines the recurring major themes of his theology: divine revelation as God's self-disclosure, the church as Christian community, liturgy as play in God's presence, literature as expression of religious experience, Nazism as negation of personal existence, Jesus Christ as mediator, and Christian acceptance of modernity. Although he never intended to promote an ecumenical council of reform, Guardini's career-long commitment to both Judeo-Christian wisdom and intellectual exchange with contemporary thought resulted in his becoming widely regarded as a major precursor of the Second Vatican Council. Respected theologians such as Karl Rahner, Hans Urs von Balthasar, and Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger have acknowledged their indebtedness to him.

Romano Guardini: Proclaiming the Sacred in a Modern World, by Robert A. Krieg (Editor). Liturgy Training Publications (September 1995)