Be not Afraid

Gill & Macmillan Ltd, 1975

Vanier brings to life the Beatitudes by saying that we must contemplate Jesus as He lived and, above all follow Him because we cannot be called disciples of Jesus Christ if we do not. And to follow Him is to put our hand in His hands, our steps in His steps. It is to take the same road and to stay on it. It is to let fear fall away, putting our confidence in him, because his is the healer, the One who comes to bring us life and liberate us from ourselves. Because Jesus comes to heal us from our egoism, aggressiveness and anguish, Vanier writes that we can face our fears, and accept ourselves as we are, without being afraid.

Eruption to Hope

Paulist Pr, 1971

“Sharing” is the theme of this book. “Eruption to hope” comes out of a collection of talks and poems given to international groups, businessmen and educator. It is of vital interest to individuals as well. Vanier believes that our civilization will erupt in ruin unless we share. If we share, then good will and love will give way to an “eruption of hope”. An interiority of hope is the cause and effect of the young person discovering a true personal morality, writes Vanier, a morality of love which surges from the inner being and flows like a source of living water. It is this morality or spirituality which gives real interior liberty and eases all fear.

In Weakness Strength

Griffin House, 1969

The spiritual sources of Georges P. Vanier, 19th Governor-General of Canada.
Georges P. Vanier, Jean Vanier’s father made a strong impression on his son. After Georges’ death, Jean Vanier wrote this biography encapsulating his father’s spiritual life. For Georges, love was the “central aspect of human faith and God,” and this idea has also been his son’s overarching theological and philosophical basis. In his life, Georges suffered greatly from an amputated leg resulting from a war injury, and in Georges’ biography Jean wrote that pain was the foundation of Georges’ spiritual life. He believed that pain and weakness were the clearest roots to communion with God. Jean Vanier draws inspiration from his father’s life to articulate the spiritual meaning we feel in pain, dependence and frailty.