The brilliant English author G.K. Chesterton weaves Our Lady in and out of his fiction: characters are praying the rosary, going to church, fighting over the place of the Mother of God in society. He talks about her in poetry, fiction, and non-fiction as casually as if he thought about her all the time, even writing a book of Marian poetry. As he says, you cannot chip away at a statue of Mother and Child and leave only the Child; it is impossible to think of Jesus without thinking of His Mother.
Chesterton seems to have pondered conversion for at least fourteen years, from 1908 and the writing of Orthodoxy to 1922 when he converted to Catholicism. He obviously did not convert on a whim. When Chesterton spoke about the things that most make a Catholic a Catholic, he seemed to always pick two controversial ideas: praying to the saints and honoring the Mother of God. But he understood Mary’s place in the divine plan long before he was Catholic; loving her from his childhood. Once Catholic, his understanding only deepened.
But he was reluctant to speak of these personal things. Could the man who had something to say about nearly everything find it difficult to speak about his own personal feelings regarding faith and conversion? He says it is so. But the hints are there. We must dig to find those hints.
Chesterton and Our Lady encourages you to look with new eyes at his words and stories to see a man deeply devoted to God, to Jesus, and to Our Lady, Mother of God, the Virgin who calls him, who lights the way, who leads him to the Babe whom he seeks in the Stable at the End of the World. “This is Himself,” says Mary to Chesterton — and to us — holding the Blessed Baby in her arms, showing Him to us, “and He is the one you’ll be wanting at the last.”
Chesterton and Our Lady includes essays by:
Karl Schmude, President of the Australian Chesterton Society and founder of the Classical Catholic Campion College; author of the Catholic Truth Society’s edition of G.K. Chesterton, a biography; he is also Editor-in-Chief of The Defendant, the quarterly of the Australian Chesterton Society.
Maria Romine, actor, owner of Swords and Roses, a company that teaches stage sword fighting, and also Captain of the St. Louis ComedySportz team.
James G. Bruen, Jr., longtime contributor to Gilbert magazine.
Father Robert Wild author of The Tumbler of God: Chesterton as Mystic (Angelico Press, 2013) and Jousting with the Devil: Chesterton’s Battle with the Father of Lies (St. Benedict Press, 2015).
Sam Guzman, author of The Catholic Gentleman: Living Authentic Manhood Today (Ignatius Press, 2019).
Dr. Peter Floriani, PhD., author of more than sixty books including De Bellis Stellarum, the tale of young men who re-form a league of Knights devoted to Our Lady and to helping their communities.
Nancy Carpentier Brown, author of The Woman Who Was Chesterton, a biography of Frances Chesterton, winner of the Society of G. K. Chesterton Lifetime Achievement award, and co-founder of the Frances Chesterton Rosary League.
“Anyone who knows G.K. Chesterton well knows the depth of his spiritual life. He was not only a genius but also a mystic. And from his boyhood, G.K. Chesterton had a mystical devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, many years before he ever became Catholic. This splendid collection of essays unveils this Marian mysticism, depicting a man who loves not only Christ but also his Mother, the Queen of Seven Swords. As Chesterton says, ‘The instant I remembered the Catholic Church, I remembered her.’ When we remember Chesterton, we should remember her, too.” – Brandon Vogt, author of Why I Am Catholic (And You Should Be Too)