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Close To The Wind


I was baptised, raised and educated as a devout Catholic and graduated not only from Sydney University but also from a Marist novitiate and scholasticate where devotion to Our Lady and the saints, the Latin Mass and Gregorian Chant were all held in high esteem. As a history student at a secular university, I was exposed to a version of history which was much more analytical and critical than the fairytales of a medieval ‘Golden Age’ we had been fed in primary school. I took my final – my perpetual – vows in the wake of the release of the Vatican II documents: especially, but not exclusively, Gaudium et Spes, on the Church and the Modern World, and the constitutions on the Church, the Liturgy and the Sacred Scriptures. Admittedly without fully realizing it, I dedicated my life to promoting this vision of the church as a source of ‘joy and hope’ for the world. I would never claim to have served this cause selflessly or without blemish, but – yes, perhaps – without faltering, for the remainder of my time with the Marist Brothers: the ‘best’ years of my life.

Known as Brother Valerian, John Braniff spent some thirty-four years of his life with the Marist Brothers, working largely in their schools around Australia. This frank memoir traces his story from his childhood in Kilmarnock, Scotland, to the present. His account is both a personal history and a lively portrayal of Australian education and society over fifty years.
Close To The Wind
ISBN: 9781863551281
$ 24.95


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