Recent books in brief

Recent books in brief
Fatima, the Family and Church: Mary’s Message with Prayers and Devotions

by Timothy Tindal Robertson and Donal Anthony Foley (Catholic Truth Society, £3.50 / €4.20)

This booklet is by two writers who have between them decades of work in promoting Fatima. In 2013 Pope Francis decided to hold a Marian Day in the Year of Faith on October 13, which he dedicates to our Lady of Fatima. For this occasion, Timothy Tindal-Robertson was, to his astonishment, was elected to represent the World Apostolate of Fatima in meeting the Pope.

In this booklet he is the author of the first section, ‘Fatima’s message to the church today’, whilst Donal Anthony Foley compiled the Fatima prayers and devotions. The narrative of Fatima comes down to the canonisation of Francisco and Jacinta on May 17, 2017. The authors believe that if anyone follows the example of the two saints they too can aspire to such sanctity and so “proclaim the faith in today’s increasingly hostile secular environment”.


The King of Love: Guide to a prayerful experience of John’s gospel

by Albert McNally (Shanway Press, Belfast, £15.00; can be ordered on line at , who will accommodate the euro exchange)

Fr McNally is the author of previous books about the gospels of Luke, Mark and Matthew. Back in his youth he studied at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome. After some three decades devoted to developing young minds, he had 17 years as a parish priest. In writing this book has clearly drawn on varied experience.

Readers have always known that John’s Gospel is different from those of Matthew, Mark and Luke. In these pages Fr McNally explores why this is: John is immediately more spiritually inclined, and therefore the most enriching.

The author gives a straightforward guide to all 21 chapters of the Gospel, as well as providing 22 passages suitable for Lectio Divina, and 10 Stations of the Cross which can be prayed as a supplement to the traditional ones.

The author believes that his book “is for everyone from student to pensioner, a challenge to all to deepen their spirituality and their relationship with the living Lord. It’s a sipping drink to be savoured slowly, rather than a binge. Taste and see that Lord is good”.

His warning to take the ideas and insight in these pages slowly is a good one. Of late we have all had a lot of time on our hands. A book like this provides a spiritually creative way of filling them to a good purpose.


Belturbet, County Cavan, 1610-1714

by Brendan Scott (Maynooth Studies in Local History / Four Courts Press, €9.95)

This pamphlet is one of the latest in a well-known series of informative and insightful local histories. There has been great attention recently to the emergence of Partition since the 1880s and its development since. But what happened a century ago was, of course, the outcome of the kind of settlement and its growth back in the 17th Century, which has gone into generating the culture of modern Ulster. It needs to be read by those who want to understand Mr Edwin Poots.