Home > Culture > From Fear to Serenity with Anthony de Mello

From Fear to Serenity with Anthony de Mello

RRP $17.95

Reviewed by Rev Brian Lee.

A FEW years ago on a visit to India I was introduced to Anthony de Mello’s Prayers of the Frog, a delightful, stimulating and challenging series of very short stories and sayings gathered from centuries of Central Asian and Middle Eastern story tellers, a few Christian, most not.

He is described as an Indian Jesuit priest (1931- 1987) and “one of the great spiritual masters of our time whose influence transcended religious boundaries by the end of his life”.

From Fear to Serenity with Anthony de Mello aims to help us find our way on the journey into ourselves and to God by
using techniques of prayer inspired by Mr de Mello’s words, teaching and example.

The book leads from a short introduction to a chapter explaining why the authors used Mr de Mello and one on preparation for praying.

Then follow eight chapters on prayer.

Each includes a story or two, key phrases and practical exercises.

Those seriously wanting to develop their personal prayer life will find many helpful ways in this book.

One of my favourite Anthony de Mellow stories is quoted on page nine: A known sinner was excommunicated and banned from entering the church.

In desperation, he turned to God.

“Lord, they won’t let me in because I’m a sinner.”

God replied, “What are you moaning about, they won’t let me in either!”