Early Church Father Readings


#1

Hello all! I’m not sure where to post this particular thread so I apologize in advance if I’m wrong by doing it here.

If you were to have a friend who has one foot out of the door for a million and one uneducated reasons, which writer would you suggest to read first? I know this is a very vague question and again, I apologize. Who would you consider to have the most impact in fortifying the most basic doctrines and beliefs?

Go Irish!


#2

If his foot is out the door because he no longer believes the truths of Christianity then, Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis is an excellent book for him to read. After sufficient time, ask him questions about the book. He may not want to read it, because he may be looking for a way out for sinful reasons.

I’m not Catholic, so I’ll leave the suggestions for Catholic books to others–assuming that is why he is leaving.


#3

And what religion are you? :slight_smile:


#4

[quote=Psalm89]If his foot is out the door because he no longer believes the truths of Christianity then, Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis is an excellent book for him to read. After sufficient time, ask him questions about the book. He may not want to read it, because he may be looking for a way out for sinful reasons.

I’m not Catholic, so I’ll leave the suggestions for Catholic books to others–assuming that is why he is leaving.
[/quote]

Actually, that is a good book for all Christians to read - both Catholic and non-Catholic.

ic.net/~erasmus/RAZ26.HTM

If you wanted to have him reading something of a more introductory level on the ECF, then try “The Fathers of the Church” by Mike Aquilina.


#5

Augustine’s City of God is good. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica is great, but man it’s a difficult read. I always liked the writings of St. John Chrysostom.

Is there an especially troublesome area for your friend?


#6

Everything from Ignatius of Antioch.


#7

[quote=b_justb]Everything from Ignatius of Antioch.
[/quote]

Ditto.


#8

[quote=imroc]Hello all! I’m not sure where to post this particular thread so I apologize in advance if I’m wrong by doing it here.

If you were to have a friend who has one foot out of the door for a million and one uneducated reasons, which writer would you suggest to read first? I know this is a very vague question and again, I apologize. Who would you consider to have the most impact in fortifying the most basic doctrines and beliefs?
Go Irish!
[/quote]

Hmm. Maybe you have some special reason for wanting to give this friend the early church fathers, but, if he has one foot out the door for “uneducated” reasons, I doubt they will be the most “fortifying” for him. I think, before passing him copies of the early greats, you might need to give him some basic apologetic books by contemporary authors to build the theological groundwork for understanding much deeper stuff. Hopefully books, such as Keeting’s “Fundamentalist and Catholic” will answer many questions, and then, as your friend’s “million and one” reasons drop to a more manageable few, you can find authors that write regarding the specific problem areas. If he is truly “uneducated” in his theology, the early church fathers will not only be a lot to sort through, he will fail to see the significance of their non-inspired works.


#9

I wouldn’t get him anything by the ECFs which are useful for more of a sort-of in-depth study or clarification on someone’s already grounded knowledge.

Sounds to me like he needs a bit of a pick-me-up combined with some knowledge. For that, I cannot recommend enough the new book by David Scott, The Catholic Passion.

Scripture, history, arts, liturgy, theology, spirituality all wrapped up into one easy to read book on living as a Catholic. It’s infused with a love of life, Christ, and the Church. Great stuff, man. It’s somehow very smooth and satisfying yet it leads you to further study. It makes you WANT to go further into your faith, not as an obligation, but as almost an explorer.

I think CA radio is having a discussion about the book coming up, but I’m not sure when. (If it has already taken place you can hear it on the archives)


#10

“Why Do Catholics Do That?” by Kevin Orlin Johnson and “Surprised By Truth” By Patrick Madrid got me started on my journey across the Tiber.


#11

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