Deeply ingrained in the life and mission of the Church, but not always readily understood, is her monastic, religious witness. In Monk Dynasty, John Michael Talbot, with erudition, passion and wit opens a window onto the extraordinary testimony of monastic life in all its many forms. John Michael Talbot comes out of this spiritual current running through the Church and helps all of us wade more comfortably into its life-nurturing waters. This book is a long awaited telling of the story of monks, monasticism and the making of saints.
Donald Cardinal Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington
This is a remarkably rich history of Christian spirituality, focusing especially on the influence that monks have exercised over the practice of ordinary laypeople. Clear and vividly written, it’s a page-turner — as engaging as a thriller or a romance — making it unusual and almost unique in this genre.
Mike Aquilina, EWTN Host and Popular Catholic Author
“JMT takes us along on his journey toward understanding monasticism. It is a rollicking ride through history with snacks along the way. Even if we don’t join a monastery, we can pick up some of the snacks for our own journey."
Fr. Jerome Kodell, O.S.B. - Former 6th Abbot of Subiaco Abbey
John Michael Talbot is presenting his TV conferences on monastic history and its relevance for today under the surprising title “Monk Dynasty” written in a cheerful language, understandable for all. He develops a vision for a revival of this heritage in our Secular Humanism, showing that renewal has to start within families, so the monk inside every human being can find its special expression in a monastic vocation in a stricter sense. We are grateful for this inspiring book. Monastic History becomes alive and exciting for men and women of our times.
Dr. Notker Wolf OSB, Abbot Primate, San Anselmo Rome
John Michael Talbot provides us an engaging, brief study of monastic history and the evolution of different forms of monastic spirituality. He reflects on the ways that the integration of this rich patrimony finds contemporary expression in the Brothers and Sisters of Charity at the same time as he offers insights into what the witness of monastics of the past and present has to offer for the renewal of Christian life in today's world.
Bishop Anthony B. Taylor, Catholic Diocese of Little Rock, Arkansas
John Michael's view of monastic history "from 30,000 feet" is an exhilarating big picture of how monks have touched our lives. People of all faiths are the beneficiaries of his remarkable distillation of monasticism as a continuum of our faith heritage.
Dan O'Neill, Founder of Mercy Corps, Author of Best-Selling "Signatures: The Story of John Michael Talbot"
Monk Dynasty is right! Monks are ordinary people pursuing an extraordinary call. John Michael Talbot has been living and promoting the monastic lifestyle for decades. Readers who want an accessible tour of monastic history and teaching will appreciate this unique book.
Steve Rabey, Popular Christian Author, Co-author with John Michael Talbot Best-Selleter "The Lessons of St. Francis"
"In an age of declining church membership, it is refreshing to see a Roman Catholic monastic reach out with such joy and authenticity to this new generation. I highly recommend this book to all who would deepen their commitment to Christ, and their journey into the Heart of God."
Abbot Tryphon, All Merciful Saviour Orthodox Monastery — Vashon Island, Washington
In the early centuries of the Church came the great "rush to the desert" as early Christians in both east and west discovered the monastic life and found that the mark of Christian purity was not sterility, but fruitfulness. Now as the postmodern world becomes a desert, we see a renewed interest in that same call to the life of a monk. John Michael Talbot shows that this call is not an escape, but a movement toward the heart of the Crucified and Risen One, for the sake of his Body the Church, and for the salvation of the world.
Mark P. Shea, Author, Mary, Mother of the Son
John Michael weaves important monastic concepts and history into a fun and easy to read text. This is like having John Michael sitting next to you talking through monasticism.
Mark Lanier, Lawyer, Author and Founder of the Lanier Theological Library
Monk Dynasty is no dry history of Christian monasticism. John Michael Talbot brings his usual evangelical zeal to this work, exploring the different phases of the monastic movement as lived through his own experience, with his usual combination erudition and plain talk. This is a fine primer for the new monastics who want to understand the foundations of this noble heritage.
Cyprian Consiglio, OSB Cam., Prior, New Camaldoli Hermitage
Monk Dynasty by John Michael Talbot is a read that is eye-opening, enjoyable and deeply convicting! Musician JMT again becomes serious author John Michael . “The truth is there's a little monk inside every serious Christian!” writes Talbot. If we ARE to be serious about our faith, then how could we possibly IGNORE the nearly 2000 years of monastic tradition as a great source of knowledge and inspiration – and that is exactly what this book offers us.
Tom Booth - Composer, Parish Mission/Retreat Leader, Associate of Music Development for OCP