Sunday, May 13, 2007

Matthew Kelly, Story-telling, and Changing Your Life

Lighthouse Catholic Media puts out a CD of the month with lectures by various Catholic teachers. It's an excellent series. My friend/mentor/RCIA sponsor (does that make him my godfather?) gets this series and also gets extras to pass out to others, which means I typically get them, too.

The CD this month is Matthew Kelly's "Becoming The-Best-Version-of-Yourself." I don't know what's up with the hyphens, but never mind that.

Kelly's "best version of yourself" is just another term for sainthood, but what I find particularly interesting about his talk is his recognition of storytelling as a vital didactic method. He begins his lecture with an excellent fable. In the midst of his lecture, he strongly encourages everyone to read a good book for at least ten minutes every day. My response was at first, "Only ten minutes?" But if someone doesn't read regularly, ten minutes is a good, reasonable start.

"What you read today walks and talks with you tomorrow," says Kelly. Amen to that! The ability to read is a precious gift. To neglect it is a crime. If my books weren't all packed up in boxes, I'd pick up Alberto Manguel's The History of Reading and tell you what the statistic was on world illiteracy about a decade ago. I remember it was rather high. To be able to read is a precious gift; in particular, being able to read the Bible is a precious gift.

Kelly speaks of books that change lives, books that move and comfort people. His ministry, apparently, even offers a list of books he thinks will particularly move people. Sometime soon, I need to produce a list of my own. I'll post it when it has a significant number of titles. I'm sure it will be different from Kelly's, as I don't imagine his list is particularly science fiction-laden.

Here's the the link to Matthew Kelly's organization. I'm having trouble finding his top books list, though I found his books.
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