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Books By James Kavanaugh That You Must Read

James Kavanaugh, an American Catholic priest, author, and poet, gained recognition for his bold plea for change that was published in 1967. Born on September 17, 1928, in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Kavanaugh departed from the priesthood shortly after the book’s release. Before that, he had served as a parish priest in Lansing and Flint, Michigan, following his ordination in 1954. Kavanaugh pursued further studies and obtained a doctorate from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. His influential work, titled A Modern Priest Looks at His Outdated Church, achieved widespread popularity, becoming a national bestseller. Continue reading this blog to learn more about his books and why you should read them.

  1. Celebrate the Sun

Considered by many to be James Kavanaugh’s most powerful book, it contains his own personal philosophy in a tale about a community of pelicans and the life of the amazing Harry Lagendorf Pelican. Even acclaimed advice columnist, Dear Abby, offered to give money back to anyone who did not love this book.

  1. A Modern Priest Looks at His Outdated Church

Ranked as the top-selling book on the prestigious NY Times Bestseller list, “A Modern Priest Looks at His Outdated Church” garnered international acclaim, particularly in Europe. James Kavanaugh, pouring his heart into the pages, aimed to rescue the Churches from their entanglement with mythological traditions and reveal the obscured truths they concealed. This exceptional literary work holds significant value for individuals seeking solace and healing from religious guilt. For those intrigued by the catalysts that led to the religious revolution of the 1970s, this enduring classic stands as an indispensable resource.

  1. From Loneliness to Love

According to the book, the transformative journey from loneliness to love necessitates taking risks and establishing a personal environment and robust support system, regardless of the sacrifices involved. In a society plagued by loneliness, anxiety, and depression, where individuals grapple with their unique sources of stress, James Kavanaugh empowers them to embrace newfound self-esteem and courage. Dear Abby, once again, acknowledges Kavanaugh’s profound impact, having personally read all his books and bestowed them as gifts, asserting that his message deserves a nationwide audience. As the author himself states, this book serves as a beacon of understanding, reminding readers that love is attainable, and loneliness serves as a loving signal, urging them to seek companionship.

  1. Will You Be My Friend?

This is a collection of modern poems reflecting the writer’s sensitivity to the complex emotions of friendship and love. WILL YOU BE MY FRIEND brings hope and joy, laughter and courage to millions of loyal, enthusiastic readers with moving collections of poetic reflections about life?


James Kavanaugh was an extremely complicated person and probably was from the day he was born. He was a dichotomy. By his very nature, he required more flexibility than most. He needed plenty of room to drift with the wind and commune with nature.

Read my book, A Nun’s Journey, available on Amazon to learn about my life with James Kavanaugh, and how we loved each other as best as we could, given the inner battles with which we were struggling.


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