Non Catholics and resources that helped you

I was asked this question on another board. Any non Catholics here have a recommendation on any source or book they read that helped them understand Catholicism better in the following ways?

“I think for the Non Catholic considering the Catholic faith, practices and recitations during church services and in general
can be very confusing. If you could recommend a Catholic source that would table common terms, phrases, practices and
customs and their meanings what would it be?”


Eric I put this here for I was hoping a non Catholic might be able to help in this situation.
If it’s in the wrong place please move itl

I guess a missal which pretty well every church has in the pews. I’ve been to one Catholic church where the missal was quite useless (only “black” and no “red” to follow). A St. Joseph’s Missal is usually quite good. The only other book I can think of is too old and deals with the Latin mass so likely wouldn’t be much help. The best thing to do would likely be to find a Catholic book store and ask the people there. Needless to say there’s a difference between Catholic and Christian book stores. The Christian book store I pop into once in a while is very unlikely to have any new Catholic books but the place is so huge they always have something used of interest. I’ve had some good finds there at any rate since few Catholics likely know about the place.

Father John Trigilio’s “Catholicism for Dummies” and “The Catholic Mass for Dummies” are great books that presume no previous knowledge.

Edward Sri has a very good course on the Mass. It is video driven avd has a book along with it.

Gosh, Mary. If you are speaking of the Mass, just go to a Lutheran Mass and you have about 90-95% of a Catholic Mass.


I think from a non-liturgical protestant background, this resource would probably be one I’d prefer, esp. “The Catholic Mass for Dummies” because the the “dummies” books are structured you can find the topic you want fairly quickly and you don’t have to sit and read the whole thing front to back in order to find what you are looking for.

I have two sources.

  1. Searching the threads here at CAF, point by point, issue by issue. That will tell me what Catholics think things mean, and they often argue, but there are always lots of links to source documents, helpful articles, sermons, and websites. Just like any other new thing, if you’ve got a question about it, other people have too, and have already asked.

  2. Asking my Catholic neighbor. He’s online as often as I am, and pretty well versed in what Catholics believe and why, and usually has a source he prefers to answer a question. (I ask him a lot of “what did the Pope mean by that”-type questions.

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