Books on the Church Fathers

Could someone recommend me some good books that contain the writings of the church fathers. I don’t necessary want a commentary on the writings but more of a compendium so I can read through them.


I would recommend the three volume set of “The Faith of the Early Fathers” by William A. Jurgens, just what you are looking for.


An excellent web site for the writings of the Fathers of the Church is New Advent. Go to the top of the page and click on “Fathers” It is also free. Go to

:thumbsup: New Advent has the full text of the 37 volume set of the Early Church Fathers’ writing. It doesn’t have everything, but it does have most of the most well known stuff.

If you are independently wealthy and want something even more comprehensive, you can always get the Fathers of the Church series from Catholic University of America Press. They are on volume 131 with two new volumes being released every year. :smiley:

Yikes :eek: At $35 per volume, that comes to over $4200. Even with a 40% discount offered for ordering a complete set, it is still north of $2500.

Indeed. With Logos/Verbum you can buy electronic copies of the first 127 volumes for $2229.95. Sometimes they have the set on sale for under $2000.

But still, very pricey!

Eek. I’m sticking with Jurgens. The Internet has rendered most of my rather extensive library obsolete, but the Doctrinal Index in Jurgens’ books will never be replaced by Google.

I liked “Four Witnesses,” by Rod Bennett,

:thumbsup: Gotta love Jurgens.

It really kind of depends on what you are looking for by reading them.

If you are looking for doctrinal writings- “The Faith of the Early Fathers” by Jurgens is outstanding (just volume 1 by itself is great).

If you are looking for longer writings for spiritual growth, etc. Then the New Advent website is great for having many of them in one place completely free.

If you are looking more for their commentary on the Gospels as part of a Bible study, then I would recommend “Catena Aurea”, Commentary on the Four Gospels, Collected Out of the Works of the Fathers compiled by St. Thomas Aquinas. There are four volumes, one for each Gospel, although they are not complete. For example Vol. 1 on Matthew only goes to Chapter 10 same with Luke Vol. 3 only to Chapter 10. Vol. 2 on Mark is complete. Lots of interesting views on different passages that sometimes leaves me speechless on how they could get so much out of seemingly so little.

St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, an Orthodox publishing house has a great line of Patristics. It includes some Western Fathers as well.


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