I woke today to the news that Christian author and thinker Brennan Manning has died.

From his official website:

It is with mixed emotions that we must tell you that on Friday April 12, 2013, our Brother Brennan passed away.

While he will be greatly missed we should all take comfort in the fact that he is resting in the loving arms of his Abba.

Sincerly Art & Gerry Rubino

I will never forget that special time during college when I gathered with friends every week to go over a new chapter of Manning’s The Ragamuffin Gospel. We would often order pizza or make spaghetti for the group, and then dig in to what Brother Brennan was showing us about the great love of Jesus. It was an ordinary and beautiful expression of the Body of Christ.

I don’t know if anybody in our group of evangelicals had any idea he was Roman Catholic.

It was my first exposure to an extended teaching on the depths of grace and my introduction to the contemplative, mystical side of Christianity. Many of you know how important this has been for my faith over the years…

Although I haven’t read much of his work beyond The Ragamuffin Gospel, Manning’s witness to the grace of God faciliated a very profound–even life-changing–experience for a small group of us in the middle of Texas, and I am grateful.

We pray for the peace of Christ and the comfort of the Holy Spirit for Brennan’s family and friends. May he find eternal rest.