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3.79  ·  Rating Details  ·  191 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
“On the long road it’s good to have Nouwen and his divining rod. Deftly he bends toward the drop of spiritual wisdom caked in the most ordinary things.”
—Helen Prejean, C.S.J., author of Dead Man Walking

In his classic work Intimacy, Henry J.M. Nouwen, one of the most beloved spiritual writers of the 20th century, explores the pathway to a more creative and fulfilling intima
Paperback, 160 pages
Published November 17th 2009 by HarperOne (first published April 22nd 1981)
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Dec 23, 2011 Catherine rated it did not like it
This book was like trying to chase a frightened rabbit through a thick briar patch. The title and content do not correspond. Conclusions on arguments are vague. The chapter titles are From Magic to Faith, The Challenge to Love, Student prayers: Between Confusion and Hope, Pentecostalism on Campus, Depression in The Seminary, The Priest and His Mental Health, Training for Campus Ministry. The most interesting chapters were Depression in the Seminary and The Priest and His Mental Health. I would n ...more
Sep 11, 2009 Carol rated it liked it
Shelves: christian, nouwen
I like Nouwen's writing. Here he looks at the question of "How can I find a creative and fulfilling intimacy with God and with other human beings? This is a book about the inner life (strange to be reading Emerson at the same time). The chapters I liked most was The challenge to love & intimacy and prayer.

from love --
Love is based on the mutuality of the confession of our total self to each other. This makes us free to declare not only: "My strength is your strength" but also "your pain is m
Jan 15, 2012 Suzanne rated it really liked it
Shelves: love-it, faith
I love Nouwen, and I found this book helpful. The intended theme of intimacy was somewhat lost in the midst of the essays, but, as they were written during his time at Notre Dame, an alternative theme inevitably arose - taking care (for lack of a better term) of college students. Some of the issues were older issues, but it's striking how similar the needs of college students in 1969 are to the needs of college students in 2012, and those needs were addressed with a surprising depth, given how s ...more
Oct 12, 2014 Greg rated it it was ok
This book is not what I expected it to be, and as such I was disappointed in reading it. The back cover promised that Nouwen addresses the basic question, “How can I find a creative and fulfilling intimacy in my relationship with God and my fellow human beings?” That is not what Nouwen writes about. This work is fairly academic, and addresses key issues of individuals who choose to enter ministry, and how they can find intimacy with God and with the people to whom they minister. Nouwen also addr ...more
Feb 01, 2016 Cory rated it really liked it
The title may be misleading for those expecting only to read of relational intimacy. This is not that book. In fact, Nouwen almost requires a redefinition of intimacy in this book. This is a challenging book, especially for someone in ministry, but one worth visiting and revisiting.
Jun 08, 2014 Esther rated it liked it
Given that this book was written in 1969, it seems to be more affected by the time and setting (Catholic university campus)than some of his other writings. Still there are some incredibly relevant, timeless points of truth to be found if one can look beyond the context.
Apr 25, 2016 Garrett rated it really liked it
I love the writings of Henri Nouwen, however as other reviewers have stated, this book is not in line with it's description and stated purpose. Regardless of that fact, I still enjoyed reading it, and while it is fairly dated throughout, I felt it is still worth a read and had an interesting perspective on intimacy in Nouwen's well thought out words. Definitely worth a read if you're a Henri Nouwen fan!
Found this to be an enlightening collection of essays related to the need for Pastoral Supervision and professional development of all in ministry.
Apr 15, 2013 Wade rated it liked it
Shelves: christian-living
I really enjoy Henri Nouwen, though this book was not what I expected it to be. I think with the title “Intimacy” I was expecting Nouwen at his usual (and, even at his most) tender, speaking to the inner-self… more of his speaking-to-the-heart type of style. That is not the tone of this book. It is actually much more academic. Written when Nouwen was a bit younger. But, he addresses some really key issues of ministry and depression as well as the loneliness that often stems from being involved i ...more
Drew Mason
Oct 14, 2015 Drew Mason rated it really liked it
I enjoyed reading about the various forms of intimacy (romantic, spiritual, academic, etc.)
Apr 05, 2016 Katie rated it it was ok
I agree with other reviewers who felt the content of the book was mismatched with its title and advertising. It was also a disappointment how much each chapter felt like a five-paragraph essay. Chapters began with an introduction of three (ish) ideas to be examined, then they were examined, then we were reminded of what was examined. The writing felt amateurish.
Jimmy Wilson
Feb 25, 2013 Jimmy Wilson rated it it was ok
The first half of the book was challenging and extremely thought provoking , the other half was to specific to seminarians to be much worth to those of us non priest types. Could not find anything to glean out of the last few chapters except drudgery!
Michelle Bodle
Nov 23, 2013 Michelle Bodle rated it really liked it
Shelves: spirituality
Written from Nouwen's various perspectives, this book opens the eyes of clergy and laity alike to issues surrounding the personal and professional life regarding intimacy.
Laura Pina
Oct 24, 2009 Laura Pina rated it liked it
Recommends it for: older adults who appreciate Henri Nouwen
Sometimes engaging, this book felt out-dated, with a few interesting insights. I was a little disappointed.
Mark Kaech
Oct 06, 2009 Mark Kaech rated it it was amazing
Great book on the difference between relationships based on power and ones based on love.
Feb 26, 2008 Deborah rated it liked it
Sort of a strange mix of essays, but all worth reading.
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Henri Jozef Machiel Nouwen (Nouen), (1932–1996) was a Dutch-born Catholic priest and writer who authored 40 books on the spiritual life.

Nouwen's books are widely read today by Protestants and Catholics alike. The Wounded Healer, In the Name of Jesus, Clowning in Rome, The Life of the Beloved, and The Way of the Heart are just a few of the more widely recognized titles. After nearly two decades of
More about Henri J.M. Nouwen...

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