Thursday, August 28, 2008

Wlodimir (Vladimir) Ledochowski: "a remarkable man of superior intelligence...",M1

After a brief stay in Zurich, he and Gretchen paid a visit to the general of the Jesuits, who was residing in Zizers. Meeting Father Ledochowski, SJ, was for Dietrich a particularly beautiful experience. Since his conversion, he always considered it a privilege to meet Catholic spiritual leaders. Father Ledochowski was an Austrian citizen, for he came from a part of Poland that was at that time Austrian territory. Even though he was the Jesuit general, whose official residence is Rome, he had not been permitted to stay in the Holy City because Italy had been at war with Austria. Father Ledochowski took refuge in Switzerland. Dietrich found him to be a remarkable man of superior intelligence, with a powerful personality that radiated a deep spiritual life. During their interview, Father Ledochowski happened to refer to Clemenceau, and he told his visitor how very anti religious the French staesman was. He had once said to Ledochowski, "I hate a world in which people believe in a God who is good and just."
Above excerpted from "The Soul of a Lion: Dietrich Von Hildebrand: a Biography"

Dietrich von Hildebrand, widely regarded as one of the great Catholic philosophers of the 20th century, is well-known for his numerous books, but, until this present work, not much has been known of his remarkable and inspiring life. Written by his wife, Alice, also a highly respected Catholic thinker, this is a fascinating, moving and, at times, gripping account of a truly great man of the Church who suffered much for the faith.

Based on a very long "letter" Dietrich wrote to his wife late in his life, it tells his story from his glorious youth with a unique intellectual and cultural formation, his conversion to Catholisism, his great passion for truth and beauty, his extensive writing on Christian philosophy and theology, and his steadfast, determined opposition to Nazism that made him a marked man who miraculously escaped execution. A powerful biography of a relentless fighter against injustice, a devoted son of the Church, a man who had the "soul of a lion".

More details
The Soul of a Lion: Dietrich Von Hildebrand : a Biography
By Alice Von Hildebrand
Published by Ignatius Press, 2000
ISBN 089870801X, 9780898708011
322 pages

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