Archive for the Dating God Book Category

Franciscan Spirituality in the Lone Star State

Posted in Dating God Book, Franciscan Spirituality with tags , , , on July 24, 2014 by Daniel P. Horan, OFM

?????????????With the arrival of summer comes a lull in postings here at, a break made more apparent this year due to a number of recent events (such as moving from one religious community to another last week, I now live in Downtown Boston as opposed to near Boston College where I had lived for the last two years) and travel for speaking engagements, leading retreats, and vacation. Just a day after the move to Downtown Crossing in Boston, to our friary at St Anthony Shrine and Ministry Center, I traveled to Dallas, TX to give a series of lectures on Franciscan Spirituality at St. Joseph Church.

It was my first time visiting this community and a wonderful experience! It took a long time, but I was able to schedule a visit to St. Joseph to speak at the invitation of a friend of mine, Fr. Timothy Heines, the pastor of St. Joseph. Fr. Timothy and I studied together in Washington, DC, while we were in coursework together (he was working on his PhD at Catholic University, I was completing a Master’s degree). It was great to reconnect and to meet so many wonderful people over the course of the weekend. The hospitality and welcome was tremendous.

It was my privilege to give to lectures, a talk geared primarily toward young adults (20s/30s) on Franciscan Spirituality based on my first book Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis (2012) and a public talk on Saturday morning looking at St. Francis, Pope Francis, and what these two Christian figures say to us today, especially to those who are ministers in the church. I was also honored to be invited to preach at the Sunday masses, at which I met so many fantastic people.

Fr. Timothy was kind enough to send along some photos from the Saturday morning event that the church photographer had captured. I share them with you here.

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Photos: Ron Heflin/St. Joseph Church

To Every Blog There is a Season

Posted in Dating God Book, Uncategorized with tags , , , on September 24, 2013 by Daniel P. Horan, OFM

Time for change. Stopwatch on white background. Isolated 3D imagIn the spirit of Ecclesiastes (and The Byrds) it seems like it’s time to share with you some reflections on the future of This post marks number 1,008 that has been published on this website since its launch in October 2010. As we come close to the third anniversary of the blog, having crossed the thousandth-post and the half-million-visitors mark, I felt it was appropriate to pause and evaluate what the origin, purpose, mission, and future of the blog was, is, and should be. In short, after several weeks of consideration and prayerful reflection, I’ve decided that it is time for a change.

Some of the more regular readers might have noticed a fluctuation in the frequency and regularity of posts here beginning in the summer and carrying through to today. This wasn’t accidental. I’ve been experimenting with how often to post new material, offer commentary, and share information, prayers, and thoughts through this medium. I haven’t found a particularly satisfying balance. Other blogs have a schedule — daily, twice-weekly, weekly, “occasional,” and so on. This blog has never really had that, although it is — if you do the math — on average a daily blog. It has never been officially stated that this is the intention, it just happened this way.

And this is what I believe has to change.

As the title of the blog indicates (although many people have forgotten about this) the site was actually launched in late 2010 in anticipation of my first book, Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis. It was never my intention, desire, or aspiration to start a blog, but rather the request of my publisher. With hesitation, I agreed to do it. Over the subsequent several years, I had come to appreciate and even at-times “enjoy” communicating in this way with whomever was interested in reading and responding. This medium has connected me, and continues to connect me still, with many women and men I would only otherwise know virtually through social media. I’m grateful for that, for this has proven to be a form of evangelization, communication, and dialogue that I wouldn’t have expected.

But I’ve been wondering lately what the precise mission and purpose of this blog should be now that Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis has been in print for more than a year. The blog has certainly taken on a life of its own and indeed is something beyond just an online extension of the book. But what exactly?

At this point, I feel that is best understood as one medium among many media through which I can communicate ideas, reflections, and commentary. Since the launch of, I have been invited to be a regular contributor to a number of other online media (for example, The HuffingtonPost and America Magazineto name two). Additionally, the amount of traveling I do for speaking events, lectures, and retreats (not to mention family, religious community, and other events) has increased over the years as has the number of requests for me to write in both scholarly and popular settings. This has been a wonderful joy, but has also placed certain demands on my time. As you all know so well, there is a limited amount of time in a given day, the realization of which has led me to take more seriously this milestone in the life of to consider what to do moving forward.

Here’s what I’ve decided for now. will consciously move from a regular, sometimes-daily blog to an “occasional” platform for sharing information, offering reflection, and communicating in this format. What this means is that there will be less-regular posts here, but that its not going away completely. If I had to guess, I would say that it’s likely that there will be a post here weekly, although that might also include cross-publication of writing that appears in other venues (think HuffPo and America, for example). I should also say that it is possible, perhaps down the road, for the mission, purpose, and future of to change again and return to a more-regular pace, but for now this is where we stand.

Those who already subscribe to will continue to get the email editions of new posts as they are published. Others can check back occasionally or you can continue to follow my writing here and elsewhere on Facebook or via Twitter.

Thanks, as always, to the many, many people who have been so supportive and enthusiastic about over the years! I hope that you will continue to be so supportive!

Peace and good!

Photo: Stock

My ‘Firstborn’ Turns One Today!

Posted in Dating God Book, Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith, Franciscan Spirituality with tags , , , , , , , on February 7, 2013 by Daniel P. Horan, OFM

Dating_God_BookOne year ago today my first book, Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis (2012), was released! It’s hard to believe that a year has passed by already. On the one hand, it seems like the book has been out much longer than that and one year doesn’t quite account for how much of my thought, time, and energy has gone into the book itself, discussing themes in the book with groups and retreatants, delivering lectures about it, signing copies of it, and so on. On the other hand, it also seems like the book was just released yesterday! Just around six months after the book came out, my publisher, Franciscan Media (formerly St. Anthony Messenger Press), informed me that the book was going into its second printing — a great sign that people seem to be enjoying the book and spreading the word.

It’s been quite a blessing to receive such positive responses to the book. It has served as the occasion for connecting with so many wonderful people in different settings, including the launch of this blog about a year before the book was released. Some people have mistakingly thought that the book arose from this blog, but in fact it was the other way around. After I received the contract for Dating God, my publisher insisted that I have some sort of ‘online presence,’ which is, in all honesty, the only choice an author has these days. It’s generally expected that there be something out there like this. So, reluctantly at first, I began what became, this very blog. To my surprise, it took off and became (and is still becoming) more popular by the day. As with the feedback and reception of the book, I’m incredibly grateful for the overwhelming support, enthusiasm, and appreciation people express about this blog on a daily basis.

Since the release of Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis lots of other projects, some that were concurrently in the works and others that have arisen since then, have occupied my time and energy. Just seven months after my first book was released, my second book, Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith: Exploring Franciscan Spirituality and Theology in the Modern World (2012) came out! The response to this book, published by a great family-owned Catholic press in the Southwest, has also been extraordinarily positive and enthusiastic. The style of this book is quite different from Dating God even if the theme is generally the same (i.e., the Franciscan tradition). It is a collection of essays that includes both popular and scholarly pieces that address the Franciscan tradition in ways that help uncover Franciscan spirituality and theology’s relevance for today.

Additionally, at the turn of the New Year a third book of mine was released. This is, unlike Dating God, actually connected to the blog. Franciscan Spirituality for the 21st Century: Selected Reflections from the Dating God Blog and Other Essays (2013) is exactly what is suggests: several of the most popular (and, at times, controversial) selections from the blog as well as other pieces that have stirred up interest and attention. This is another way that material from the blog can be accessed by a wider audience. The second volume of this collection is underway and is scheduled to be out in 2014.

While my “firstborn” turns one today, there are other literary siblings slated to joint the book family in the next few years. Some of these texts are finished and others are at various stages underway. To give you a sense of what is on the horizon, here is a glimpse of my upcoming books, their publishers, and their anticipated release.

  • Love and Suffering: A Retreat on the Seven Last Words of Christ (Franciscan Media, 2013)
  • The Franciscan Heart of Thomas Merton: A New Look at the Spiritual Influence of His Life, Thought, and Writing (Ave Maria Press, 2014)
  • Postmodernity and Univocity: A Critical Assessment of Radical Orthodoxy’s Use of John Duns Scotus (Fortress Press, 2014)
  • Refresh My Soul: A New Look at 25 Classic Catholic Prayers (Franciscan Media, 2015)

These are each exciting projects and different in many ways. As you might see from the list above, one of my forthcoming books is a scholarly text published by an excellent academic press — I don’t necessarily anticipate it getting the same widespread interest as Dating God, my firstborn, but it will be a significant contribution to what continues to be a very important conversation within contemporary theological circles. Perhaps you might want to check that out next year.

All of this updating and celebrating is to say “Thank You!” to everyone who continues to be so supportive and enthusiastic about my writing and other work and ministry. I’m very grateful and hope to be able to continue sharing my reflections, thoughts, research, and the like with you all for many years to come!

Got Books? Some Shameless Advertising

Posted in Dating God Book, Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith with tags , , , , , , on December 29, 2012 by Daniel P. Horan, OFM

December2012_WebAdIf you’re like me, you might find yourself with a gift card or two for bookstores like or Barnes & Noble after the Christmas and broader-holiday season. In the event that you’re looking for something to purchase with those acquired and restricted monies, let me shamelessly call your attention to some of my recent books that have been released during the past year, including the newest one, Franciscan Spirituality for the 21st Century: Selected Reflections from the Dating God Blog and Other Essays (2013) — if you’re a fan of this blog, I can guarantee that you’ll be a fan of this book!

I readily admit to this plug as shameless for two reasons. The first is that, as any of you who have published a book or released some sort of media (musicians, visual artists, etc.) realize, the more embarrassing and challenging part of that work or ministry is to be a part-time spokesperson for the said product. It’s just the name of the game.  The second reason this is shameless advertising is that I don’t personally benefit from the sale of any of these books, rather all royalties and proceeds go directly to my province of the Franciscan Order, so you can rest assured that any gift cards or money spent on these books goes to a great cause.

Here are some links to the ways you can get ahold of these books. You can also order them from any local or independent bookstore if they don’t already have them in stock. Thanks again for checking them out and I hope you enjoy them and spread the word! Let me know what you think — I always appreciate the feedback!

Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis (2012)

From [PaperbackKindleAudio CD]

From Barnes & Noble [PaperbackNookAudio CD]

From Franciscan Media [PaperbackAudio CD]

From iTunes [Audio VersioneBook for iPad]

Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith: Exploring Franciscan Spirituality and Theology in the Modern World (2012)

From the Tau Publishing [Paperback]

From [Kindle] [Paperback]

From Barnes & Noble [Nook]

From iTunes [iPad Book]

Franciscan Spirituality for the 21st Century: Selected Reflections from the Dating God Blog and Other Essays (2013)

From [PaperbackKindle]

From Barnes & Noble [Paperback]

‘Tis Christmas-Shopping Season

Posted in Dating God Book, Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith on November 21, 2012 by Daniel P. Horan, OFM

Click the image above to visit the page to check out these books!

Baltimore and Chicago This Week

Posted in Dating God Book, Franciscan Spirituality with tags , , , , , on November 16, 2012 by Daniel P. Horan, OFM

Like nearly all graduate students and scholars in the broadly conceived field of the study of religion, I’m a member of the American Academy of Religion (AAR), which holds its annual conference (i.e., massive religious-nerd circus) in different locations around the United States each November. This year it’s being held in Chicago and it kicks off this afternoon in some part and in full-force tomorrow (Saturday). It runs through Tuesday and should prove to be an exciting, exhausting, energizing, and enjoyable time. I’ll make my way to the conference later this weekend after I give a day of reflection at a retreat center in Maryland. The daylong series of talks is titled: “Prayer as Relationship: A Franciscan Day of Reflection” and will be followed by an afternoon book signing. You can learn more by visiting the website of the Retreat and Conference Center at Bon Secours in Marriottsville, MD. For all my fellow theology and religious studies nerds, I’ll see you in Chicago! For those planning to attend this event in Marland, I’ll see you there! For the rest of you, I hope you have a great weekend and will see you back here at next week!

Peace and good!

Photo: Stock (Chicago Skyline)

Academic Papers, Public Lecture: Busy Weekend in the NYC Metro Area

Posted in Dating God Book, Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith with tags , , , , , , on October 19, 2012 by Daniel P. Horan, OFM

For those who happen to be in the greater New York City metro area and Northern New Jersey, consider coming to some of the exciting things happening this weekend! On Saturday the Fordham University Theology Graduate Student Association is hosting a conference titled: “Sacred Topographies; or, Parks and Revelation” (full schedule below) at which I and two of my Boston College colleagues will present papers. The conference is being held at the Lincoln Center campus of Fordham (details here) and is open to the public, so if you’re interested in theology and happen to be in or around Manhattan, consider stopping in for all or part of it.

Also, on Sunday, I will be at St. Mary’s Church in Pompton Lakes, NJ, as part of their ongoing month-long celebration of Francis of Assisi. I will be celebrating and preaching at the 12 noon mass after which there is a public talk about my book Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. FrancisThere will also be books for sale (at a price cheaper than Amazon!), both Dating God and my latest book, Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith: Exploring Franciscan Spirituality and Theology in the Modern World. I will be signing copies for those who are interested.

While this weekend is sure to be a busy I hope to see many of you around!  And, as always, you can see my full schedule of speaking events at:

Schedule of Fordham Conference


9:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
2012 Fordham Graduate Theology Conference
Fordham University, Lincoln Center campus

PANEL 1: Identity, Topography, and Local Particularity (9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.)

1.”The Paradigm of Ghurbah – Shifting Topographies within the Turkish Muslim Immigrant Community in Germany”
Zeyneb Sayilgan, Georgetown University

2.”Ephesus as Contested Space: Mapping Religious, Economic, and Spatial Movement in Acts 19″
Christy Cobb, Drew University

3.”Sacred Rusticity: An Overture in Theology and Rural Topography”
Scott McDaniel, Dayton University

PANEL 2: Liturgical Space and the Topographies of Worship (11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.)

1.”Constructing the Kingdom: The Aesthetic Dimensions of Locating the Liturgy”
Brendan McInerny, Fordham University

2.”Filiation and Nostalgia at the Mosque of Cordoba”
Basit Iqbal, University of Toronto

3.”‘I am not leaving’: Our Lady, Sacred Space, and Catholic Visionary Culture”
Jill Krebs, Drew University

LUNCH BREAK 12:30 P.M. – 2:00 P.M

PANEL 3: Ruptured and Shifting Topographies (2:10 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.)

1.”Terror, Territorialism and the Cries of the Canaanite Victims: Towards a Postidealist Understanding of the Exodus Paradigm”
Eduardo Gonzalez, Boston College

2.”Throwing off the Cloak of Urban Fabric: A Spatial Analysis of Genesis 4:1-17″
Amy Beth W. Jones, Drew University

PANEL 4: Transgressed/Transgressive Topographies (3:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.)

1.”No Place for Damaged Bodies: Imagining the Kingdom of Heaven in the 4th and 5th Centuries”
Lindsey Mercer, Fordham University

2.”Be-ing on the Boundary: Re(Dis)-covering the Boundary Metaphor in Mary Daly’s Early Feminist Theological Anthropology”
Jessica Coblentz, Boston College

3.”Planetarity, Kinship and Ktiseology: Toward a Constructive and Postcolonial Franciscan Theology of Creation”
Daniel P. Horan OFM, Boston College

KEYNOTE ADDRESS (5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.)

Elizabeth Castelli, Professor and Chair of Religion at Barnard College

Photo: File
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