"Joan of Arc continues to fascinate us. She is a bundle of contradictions: simple yet sublime
a mystic whose earthy response to her visions was to inspire an army
a glorious military hero who ended up a failure, betrayed by her friends and burned at the stake by her enemies. Was she inspired? Was she mentally ill? Why did she do what she did? How did she find the courage? In the end, what did she accomplish? And what does a nineteen-year-old from the fifteenth century have to teach us?"From the Introduction
If we think of saints as quiet, contemplative types who seek to retire from the world, Joan of Arc shatters our misconceptions. A woman undeterred by criticisms of her youth, her sex and her sanity, she single-handedly changed the course of Western history. She is an inspiration to those who struggle to find, and follow, the will of God in the world.
Let Joan of Arc provide inspiration for your next armchair retreat or small group discussion.
BARBARA BECKWITH, managing editor of St. Anthony Messenger magazine, earned a B.A. in journalism from Marquette University, whose centerpiece is the St. Joan of Arc Chapel. Vice president of the International Catholic Union of the Press, Beckwith, whose middle name is Jean, considers Joan of Arc her patron saint.
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