Catholic Culture Resources
Catholic Culture Resources

107—Prayer as a Political Problem w/ Brandon McGinley

By Catholic Culture Podcast ( bio - articles - email ) | Jun 07, 2021 | In The Catholic Culture Podcast

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This is a discussion of an interesting little book from 1967 that has re-entered the discourse, Prayer as a Political Problem by Jean Danielou, SJ, recently reprinted by Cluny Media.

In this book which seems confoundingly ahead of its time, before its time, and (irksomely) of its time, Danielou insists that prayer forms a constitutive part of the temporal common good. Governments, therefore, have a responsibility to create conditions making it easy for the common people to conduct a spiritual life.

Danielou’s claim that religion and prayer are necessary even for the temporal good of civilizations is timely, and his reflections on the dangers of technological civilization are prescient. The book is not without its troublesome aspects, though, most notably Danielou’s peculiar sociological definition of religion.

Brandon McGinley, who has dealt with this subject matter in his own books, joins the show to discuss Danielou’s work.


Jean Danielou, Prayer as a Political Problem

Previous episode with Brandon McGinley on his book The Prodigal Church

Brandon McGinley and Scott Hahn, It Is Right and Just

Other things mentioned:

Jacques Maritain, The Primacy of the Spiritual

The Lord of Spirits podcast episode on the Nephilim, “A Land of Giants”

Theme music: “Franciscan Eyes”, written and performed by Thomas Mirus. Download the Catholic Culture Podcast soundtrack.

Thomas V. Mirus is Director of Podcasts for, hosts The Catholic Culture Podcast, and co-hosts Criteria: The Catholic Film Podcast. See full bio.

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