“The Lord as Their Portion: The Story of the Religious Orders and How They Shaped Our World” by Elizabeth Rapley. Wm B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. (Grand Rapids, Mich., 2011). 349 pp., $24.
In “The Lord as Their Portion,” Elizabeth Rapley offers insights into the story of religious orders against the background of the Catholic Church’s history. Beginning with the desert ascetics of the fourth century, the author describes 17 centuries of monastic and convent life, ending with the missionaries of the 19th century.