Peace Smiles traces Thomas Merton’s fascinating and sometimes troubled life from a disrupted childhood and rather turbulent adolescence, to his conversion to Roman Catholicism, his ordination in 1949 and his life in the Trappist Monastery of Gethsemani. It was there that Merton’s prophetic voice began to emerge. Bishop Monahan explores Merton as artist, social critic and ecumenist, his anti-war and anti-racism stances until his untimely death at the age of fifty-three.
Bishop Monahan shows us, above all, that a profound hope breathes within Merton’s writing that we too can find our way home by remaining authentic and true to ourselves. This quest for authenticity and truth became a life-long search for Merton.