Daniel Horan’s Dating God Book Piques Interest

Rebecca Doel In the Headlines

CINCINNATI — In between completing a master’s in divinity and preparing for ordination in May, 2012, life just became a bit busier for Daniel Horan, OFM, whose first book — Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis — is being released this month by publisher Franciscan Media.

The official release date is Feb. 7, 2012, said Dan, who professed solemn vows as a Franciscan  last August, “but some booksellers — like Amazon.com and Franciscan Media — are already shipping the book now.” Dating God can also be purchased on the Barnes & Noble website or at independent Christian and Catholic book stores, colleges and retreat centers. He recorded an audio version of the book last week.

In the coming months, the 28-year-old friar will be doing a number of speaking and signing events, including some at HNP ministries.

“I’m always happy to accept invitations from HNP parishes and other ministry sites to speak or come for a signing event,” he said. “I like to say that I have no shame in promoting the sale of the book, especially because any profits that it earns support the Franciscan family — first St. Anthony Messenger Press/Franciscan Media and second our own Holy Name Province.”

Spirituality for New Generation
Dan said he coined the title of the book — which is also the name of a blog he launched in January 2010 — in 2007 for an article about Franciscan solitude for America magazine.

“A few years later, I was talking with editors at St. Anthony Messenger Press about doing a book project on Franciscan spirituality for a new generation,” he said. “This metaphor of ‘dating’ arose again as a helpful way to capture the relational quality of the Franciscan spiritual tradition in a new way.”

He wrote Dating God in 2010 and 2011, while interning at Siena College. In addition to teaching four courses at the Upstate New York school, Dan was traveling for lectures and academic conferences, writing numerous academic and popular articles, maintaining his blog, and working on a second book.

Dan is in the process of writing three more books: one on the seven last words of Christ, scheduled for release in 2013 with St. Anthony Messenger Press for Franciscan Media, and two that focus on Thomas Merton.

Dan said he hopes Dating God will help a new generation of Christians appreciate all that the Franciscan spiritual tradition has to offer “while also enlivening the enthusiasm for the tradition for those who have long appreciated the wisdom of Francis, Clare and their followers.”

Dan 1Endorsements
Notable Catholic authors, including Fr. James Martin, SJ, Sr. Ilia Delio, OSF, and Fr. Murray Bodo, OFM, have all provided early endorsements for Dating God.

Paul Moses, author of The Saint and the Sultan, said: “The idea of ‘dating God’ may be a little jarring at first, but in Br. Dan Horan’s hands, it becomes an inspired way to find and channel our longing for God. He has done a remarkable job of bringing the wisdom of St. Francis into the Facebook age.”

Dan noted: “I sought to engage the writings of Francis and Clare along with some lesser known wisdom figures like Blessed Angela of Foligno and Blessed John Duns Scotus. The book is written in a very accessible style and in a compact size, while still covering a lot of material that — I hope — will speak to and inspire readers.”

Rebecca Doel is communications coordinator for Holy Name Province.