Blessed John Paul II declared that the great challenge for Christians today is to become " the home and school of communion. " St. Teresa Benedicta (Edith Stein), in her life and her writings, is a sure guide to attaining the communion for which every human heart longs. This work considers St. Teresa s life and writings in the context of the spirituality of communion. Her whole life as a philosopher was directed towards attaining communion with the Truth, and she discovered that Truth was a Person, Jesus Christ. Dr. Alice von Hildebrand, in the foreword, says Edith Stein's message "is above her time" and that the author, Sister Regina van den Berg, "is well qualified to write such a book."
Sister Regina has explored in detail Edith Stein's theory of empathy as developed in her doctoral dissertation as well as her theory of community in her postdoctoral thesis. Sister Regina has also used a number of Edith Stein's writings which, until this work, have not yet been available in English translation.
Sister Regina begins with a discussion about the need for a "spirituality of communion by giving Pope John Paul II's vision for the Church in the new millennium put forward in his Apostolic Letter, "Novo Millennio Ineunte," in particular, that the Church be "the home and school of communion." Aspects of "Communion" along with the "Mystical Body of Christ" are discussed using insights from Popes Pius XII and Benedict XVI.
Each chapter explores an aspect of 'communion' richly revealing how Edith Stein, "a Jew who became a philosopher, . . . a convert to Catholicism who became a Carmelite nun and crowned her life with martyrdom" through her writings "provides insights that can help us grow in the spirituality of communion, first by presenting to us the truth about the human person's nature and vocation and then by showing us how we can arrive at a spirituality of communion in the various aspects of life.""