About the Book

About The Book

The Merton Prayer is not a magical incantation. It is a gut-wrenchingly honest reaching-out to God and a looking-inward to view our true and false selves. Thomas Merton’s well-known prayer might change your life as it has the author’s. In this unique “exercise in authenticity” are fourteen reflections on the prayer that each unpack a single phrase or line of the 158 words that compose The Merton Prayer using: 

Visual Metaphors: Four-color photographs that allow you to reflect on your initial emotional reactions and responses evoked by a few words of The Merton Prayer. 

Scriptural Bases: Six scriptural passages that jump out with confirmation of what Merton is praying. 

Exegesis: The real meaning of Merton’s words that you are encouraged to “ask and keep on asking about, making your asking a matter of daily habitual behavior.” 

Personal Stories: How Merton’s prayer has spoken to the author and others regarding their disappointments, joys, unexpected career changes, brushes with illness or death, and other major life events. 

Turn It, Turn It, Turn It: Questions designed to stimulate your serious and deep reflection on the profound words of The Merton Prayer. 

For a two-minute video of the author explaining why he wrote this book, click here: https://www.instagram.com/p/CZ1kyRrpV7q/ 

To purchase The Merton Prayer: An Exercise in Authenticity

ACTA Publications (free shipping with orders of $25 or more)


Endorsements for “The Merton Prayer:  An Exercise in Authenticity”

Steven Denny provides us with a long overdue exploration of The Merton Prayer, using a kind of lectio divina—a slow, contemplative, sacred reading—of each phrase. Throughout, we learn of Denny’s own remarkable spiritual journey, critical moments in his life, and blessings he has received from regularly turning to this remarkable prayer. —Judith Valente, author of The Art of Pausing and How to Live 

Thomas Merton’s incredibly powerful prayer is used by countless people, from all walks of life, throughout the world. Steven Denny’s book mines the untold, hidden depths of what is popularly referred to as “The Merton Prayer.” Denny’s work encourages readers with fresh insight that will stir the depths of their being and draw them, ever more fervently, into the incredible beauty and profundity of Merton’s spiritual insights. —Paul M. Pearson, Director of the Thomas Merton Center, Bellarmine University

Thomas Merton, a modern-day Saint Augustine in his conversion to God, has left us many thought-provoking writings on spirituality, including “The Merton Prayer” from his book Thoughts in Solitude.  Steven Denny has incorporated this prayer into his life as an “exercise in authenticity” and writes convincingly about its power with the wonderful authority of one who has experienced it.  — Fr. Juan R. Velez, MD, PhD, author of Passion for Truth:  The Life of John Henry Newman

This is the quintessential modern pilgrim’s prayer.  Denny shows his deep understanding of and reveals much about the most important Catholic spiritual writer of the twentieth century.  —Jon M. Sweeney, author of Thomas Merton:  Introduction to His Life, Teachings, and Practices

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