What would it be like to have Thomas Merton as your boss? Can anyone really find freedom and happiness in a monastery today?
“In Praise of the Useless Life: A Monk’s Memoir” answers both questions. Its author, Brother Paul Quenon, O.C.S.O., has spent about 50 years living as a Trappist monk at the Abbey of Gethemani in Kentucky. I’ve taken a retreat there and fell in love with the place.
Thomas Merton was Quenon’s novice master, and Quenon knew him well. This book contains Quenon’s memories of the beloved monk, as well as insight into both men’s daily lives at the abbey.
The book won two 2019 Catholic Press Association Awards: Memoir (first place) and Cover Design (second place).