I know a priest who writes books and self-publishes them. They are good books, born of his heart and experience. These are books I believe could be published by a genuine publishing house. Maybe they should and maybe someday they will be.
But this is not the spirit of my friend the priest. He is not seeking the renown or satisfaction that would come (or which wannabe writers IMAGINE would come) from publication. He does not write in order to see his name printed on a book or to get invited to all the best conferences or to supplement his income.
Rather, the books he writes and self-publishes he gives away to his flock. He writes them for his church as a way of extending his care to his people. He writes them based on the needs he sees and the changes he longs to see among his people. His act of writing is the act of a shepherd concerned for his sheep, and is detached from any interest in fame or attention or glory or riches.
I suppose there are many ways the spirit of the newly canonized St. Theresa can be reflected and carried out in a person’s life. My friend’s selfless and quiet giving of himself and of his gifts is a reflection of that spirit.
May that spirit be born in a fresh way in many more of us and especially in me.