Fruit of the Spirit
PAULINE MYSTICISM FOR THE CHURCH TODAY
When Saint Paul writes about the “Fruit of the Spirit” in his Letter to the Galatians, what does he really mean? What are we to make of the list Paul provides (and that others have elaborated on over the centuries)? Crosby argues that by exploring Paul’s understanding of the Spirit’s fruit, we can envision a “mystical theology” that would transcend the divides that plague our church. Using insights from biology, neuroscience, scripture, spirituality, and literature, Crosby also includes suggestions for spiritual practices to help the reader achieve the graces of the Fruit of the Spirit.
“Deeply informed by contemporary exegesis and a careful reading of St. Paul’s letters, Michael Crosby offers us a study of what St. Paul calls ‘the fruit of the Spirit’: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. What distinguishes Crosby’s work is the manner in which he employs the Pauline material to show us how to overcome the polarization that afflicts society and the church today.”
-Frank J. Matera, Professor Emeritus, The Catholic University of America
“Typical of Michal Crosby, his critical eye cuts through the separatism he sees in the church, while his faithful heart calls us to live fully the fruits of the Spirit that we have received. He draws us close to the flame of Paul’s mysticism as found in the Letter to the Galatians, there to be singed, seared, and tempered by the fire of the Spirit into less unworthy vessels of that Spirit.”
-Dianne Bergant, Professor Emerita, Old Testament Studies, Catholic Theological Union