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About Jerry Windley-Daoust
Seriously. I'm not making this up.
Fortunately, the people who taught the major had the good sense to require an introductory course designed to scare some sense into people like me. Their basic pitch: You're not going to get a job, but if you do, it'll be clearing brush for $10,000 a year.
The next day, I showed up at the offices of the School of Journalism, where the dean also told me that I wouldn't get a job, and if I did, it wouldn't pay anything. I switched majors anyway. I'd been putting my thoughts, observations, and imaginings on paper since I was seven, when I taped together a sheaf of computer paper to create a book I titled My Life, Adventures, and Everything. By committing myself to a professional writing career, in a way I was committing myself to carry on with that first ambitious project. If I ended up unemployed...well, at least I could turn my unemployment into a poem...or an article...or a memoir.
As it turned out, I did get jobs writing (although the dean was right about the pay), beginning with the four years I spent at the student newspaper, the Minnesota Daily. After graduating, I was hired for three days by The Independent, based in Marshall, Minnesota. Have you ever been to Marshall? I had, for the job interview, which is why I quit when the Winona Post called with a better offer. Only slightly better, but it was Winona. Have you ever been to Winona? Then you know what I mean.
After a little more than a year at the Post, I took a position as an unpaid live-in volunteer at the Winona Catholic Worker, which ran a house of hospitality for families in need of food and shelter. During my two and a half years there, I launched a modest part-time career writing freelance magazine articles for the Catholic press. I also published a couple of short stories, one of which ("Bury Your Dead") won the Minnesota Monthly Tamarack Award in 1997.
That story led to my being commissioned by Saint Mary's Press to write a book of short stories (Waking Up Bees). Eventually I was hired as a full-time development editor in the high school division of Saint Mary's Press, where I edited numerous textbooks and authored several books.
All of these books and articles were published under my given name, Jerry Daoust. I added the "Windley-" when I married Susan Windley in 1999. A few years later, I opted to leave Saint Mary's Press in order to take care of our son at home full time.
Five kids and ten years later, I am slowly attempting to revive my writing career, with an emphasis on novel-length and short fiction.
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The Daily Examen Journal: A 30-Day Spiritual Retreat is for anyone who wants a guided experience of the Ignatian Examen in a beautiful journal format. This ebook edition is intended to be used with a blank journal or another writing medium (not included). It includes an introduction to the practice of the Daily Examen; 30 guided journal entries; and inspirational prayers from the saints for each day’s entry.
By the end of his life, St. Ignatius of Loyola could say of himself, “Whenever he wished, at whatever hour, he could find God.”
This sensitivity to God’s presence didn’t just happen. Instead, it was the fruit of his daily practice of prayerfully examining his thoughts, feelings, words, and actions under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Fortunately for the rest of us, St. Ignatius taught this method of prayer to the members of the religious order he founded, the Society of Jesus (“the Jesuits”); he thought it was so important to their spiritual life, he required them to pray it twice a day.
Over the centuries, millions of ordinary Christians have made the Ignatian Examen—also known as the Daily Examen—a regular part of their prayer life. Like St. Ignatius and like Pope Francis, they have found it to be a powerful aid to spiritual growth.
Now, The Daily Examen Journal: A 30-Day Spiritual Retreat offers a way to practice the Ignatian Examen in a beautiful journal format. The practice of journaling the Examen has its roots with St. Ignatius himself; he kept a treasured notebook of his spiritual insights, and encouraged his Jesuits to keep a simple written record of their spiritual progress from day to day.
The Daily Examen Journal includes:
- a thorough introduction to the spirit and practice of the Ignatian Examen;
- 30 step-by-step guided journal entries;
- a different inspirational prayer from the saints or the book of Psalms for each day’s entry.
The Daily Examen Journal is a helpful aid to anyone who wants a more focused, guided experience of the Daily Examen…and, when it is finished, a written record of his or her spiritual journey.
“If we do not know what happens in our heart … we are like ‘animals that understand nothing,’ that move along through instinct (cf. Jude 1:10). But we are not animals, we are children of God, baptized with the gift of the Holy Spirit. For this reason, it is important to understand what has happened each day in my heart.”
—Pope Francis, encouraging the practice of a daily examen (morning meditation for September 4, 2018)
• Age-appropriate suggestions for young children, older kids, and teens
• Answers to questions kids have about prayer
• An appendix of Catholic prayers
• A quick-find index that doubles as a checklist
From mealtime prayers to keeping a prayer journal and praying a family Rosary, you're sure to find lots of ideas for conversing with God together!