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The Diary of a Country Priest:
An idealistic young Catholic priest in an isolated French village keeps a diary describing the unheroic suffering and the petty internal conflicts of his parish. This may sound like a thin plot for a novel, but Diary of a Country Priest, by George Bernanos, remains one of the 20th century's most vivid evocations of saintly life. First published in 1937, Bernanos's Diary describes a faithful man's experience of failure. In his diary, the priest records feelings of inferiority and sadness that he cannot express to his parishioners. And as he approaches death, from cancer, the priest's saintliness remains unclear to him, but becomes undeniable to the reader. "How easy it is to hate oneself! True grace is to forget. Yet if pride could die in us, the supreme grace would be to love oneself in all simplicity--as one would love any one of those who themselves have suffered and loved in Christ." --Michael Joseph Gross [via]