What a treasure! Thank YOU! Often a single paragraph or even a sentence provides enough fruit for contemplation or inspiration. Too narrow in scope even for the most learned. Who else advises you? Thanks for your list. He, too, is a convert, and this is one of my all-time favorite books on the natural law. I was so happy to see Cormac Burke's Covenanted Happiness on the list — one of the greatest books I have ever read!
Another by Fr. Frederick W. Faber is The Precious Blood , a panoramic sweeping breathtaking lyrical nearly beatific account of our heritage. It explodes in slow motion. While Newman's Parochial and Plain Sermons are justly famous, I'm not sure they belong on the list under the heading "The basics of Catholicism". They are from his Anglican days and the theology reflects this. A Scripture Category would have been nice. Aquinas' Catena Aurea and his commentaries on John and Romans would deserve to be on the list I'd include his whole pauline corpus.
Olson very happy. Combining Patristics and Scripture I'd recommend Chrysostom's homiletic commentaries; the previously mentioned Catena Aurea and the commentaries of Jerome and Bede. Quasten's multi-volume Patrology provides a comprehensive introduction to the lives and thoughts of the Fathers of the Church. Thanks for the list, Brandon! I did not read a Catholic book until forty years after I left school. I would have to live to be about given the number of books I wish to read and the speed at which I read to remember! We have over years of writings to chose from so of course everyone has different favourites.
I love Sheed, not just because he is a fellow Australian, and so I would add A Map of Life available to be read online to the list. I like anything written by Peter Kreeft. I love Thomas Howard's poetic prose imbued with such a love of the Catholic Faith e. This is a good book for getting the real deal about the teachings of the Catholic Church. The Trivium by St Miriam Joseph is great for those who wish to learn about Grammar, Rhetoric and Logic and how the study of these gives one the "tools to perfect the mind".
This is all based on Aristotle who I am not likely to read. I will stop now but how good it has been to mentally caress my beloved books. My list is not an academic one and so may be useful for the lay person with no particular education in thelogy or philosophy. Sorry for the really late reply on Thomas Merton, I did not think to check back due to other kinds of research. I think that he had too great a fascination with the eastern religions and that anyone reading him has to be well grounded in theology and knowing well what Christian prayer is not before reading him.
Personally I will never read him devotionally because there are far too many saints whose wisdom is well acknowledged for me to waste time reading someone who may or may not be in error because of an undue fascination with false religion. Of course we want to mention titles left out. What an incredible intellectual heritage we are heirs to! The Spiritual Life Tanqueray is remarkable for its clarity of exposition on sin, helping immensely to know one's self.
Probably the one I most wish for my college age children to absorb. Under miscellaneous I would add another book by Sigrid Undset : her biography of St Catherine of Siena; beautifully and briefly written, beautifully translated in the Ignatius Press paperback, and makes you understand and feel that what you thought was just bizarre and maybe crazy in the way Christianity was sometimes practised had real logic and real humanity in it. Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov is remarkable, even if he was a bit of an anti-Catholic in his Orthodox perspective.
Certainly a must read. One category missing is the liturgy. In fact not having Ratzinger's "Introduction to Christianity" is a serious knock against this list. Great list! A wonderful list.
I would however suggest the addition of Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov, which many consider one of the greatest literary classics of all time, and no slouch in the spiritual and theological realms either. So many books, so little time… I'm sure we all have our own list of classics to add. I will say that Shusaku Endo's 'Silence' struck me in a profound way at a time when I was losing my faith — and made me hang on with the thinnest of tethers.
It was a true gift of the Holy Spirit. I waded through the Seven Story Mountain only to be thunderstruck at the beginning of part 2 as Merton spoke seemingly to me alone. And today, Escriva's The Way and The Furrow are genuinely remarkable in keeping my head and soul screwed on straight while my parish is in the process of suppression. Thanks for the Post! But spendy, alas. Personally, I think Fr. Dubay's Fire Within is his best book of the ones I've read , and it should be on the list.
What about Dietrich von Hildebrand's Transfiguration in Christ? Fr Raoul Plus is good, too. Carl : Thanks for all the recommendations! I've had my eye on Bennet's book and have read many good reviews—no doubt through Ignatius Insight. I snatched all of them up except for the Gospel of John and Revelation, which they were missing…someone must really have loved the beloved disciple! I like that set more than Jurgens' since it walks you through the Fathers scripturally rather than chronologically though I find use for both sets. As for the Fathers, I've been slowly making my way through the Jurgens three-volume set.
You have any favorite books on patristics? I would also highly recommend two books by J. Kelly: Early Christian Creeds and Early Christian Doctrines , which are very helpful studies that contain a wealth of quotes. Another helpful book that might be hard to find is Handbook of Patrology Herder, , by Rev. Finally, a pretty good resource for those interested in both patristics and Scripture is the Ancient Christian Commentary set, published by IVP. A caution: Chesterton was notoriously slapdash when writing his biographies.
His insights and style are treasures and joys, of course, but a lay reader wishing for accuracy and thoroughness should not let GKC be the only title on their list. Donna : As a Lewis fanatic, I count "The Great Divorce" as one of his best books: it highlights both his imagination and his sharp theological mind. Brother Paul : Why the distaste for Merton? I know some criticized his rubbing shoulders with Eastern religions, but is there something beyond that?
Carl : I'll agree with each of those. Thank you. It is always good to have a good compilation like that, as people occasionally inquire about good Catholic reading. If you're looking for 'great books', you can hardly do better than the Great Books of the Western World:. Yesterday, I thought of creating a "great books" reading list for personal enrichment.
I searched the Internet and found the curriculums of the College of St. John's College, and Wikipedia articles to help me. Now, I find this blog post for even more material from which to choose from. The Lord works in mysterious ways. I give thanks to Him for His providence and abundance. It is an astounding book which combines adventure and deep spiritual insight. St Josemaria Escriva read it as a young priest and was deeply moved. For younger readers and adults who don't mind simpler concepts, the Narnia series by C. Lewis should also be considered. The stories take less time to go through than Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, and can be read, a chapter at a time to children ten or younger as a bedtime story.
So happy Kristen Lavransdatter is on there! They're some of my favorite books, and too many people don't know about them. Thanks for your informative list! I love the classics listed. I'm longing to dig into some Merton. I'd like to add two to your list: Fr. James Martin's spiritual memoir, "My Life with the Saints. Pedro Arrupe, and Dorothy Day, while discussing his own spiritual journey, from business school to volunteering in Kenya. Martin has an easygoing, humorous style that's appealing to all ages.
I can't stop reading this one-it's soothing before bed. Michael Leach's "Why Stay Catholic? He invites us to "taste and see how good the Lord is" and reaffirm spiritual routes for all Catholics. Adrian Fortescue wrote some great history books that are very readable. Check out his work on the Eastern Orthodox Church. Ruth Ann : Wow! Thanks for the extra recommendations. I'm already preparing a post with other classic spiritual books that didn't make this list. And I'm envious that you jumped on spiritual literature at such a young age.
I wish people would have encouraged such a pursuit when I was in high school in college. I'm going to recommend the same books that you read as a young adult to my own children when they reach that age. Brent : Yeah I try not to read too fast, for the very reasons you mentioned. A good book is one that has been chewed before digested. Nevertheless, I've already read 14 of these titles, so I can make my goal by reading one per month-and-a-half. Fantastic list.
One book a month? Of those titles? You might want to finish that list by 35 and then re-read it by 45 to allow for proper digestion. Further, I've been told that some of those books, in particularly St. Francis de Sales "Treatise on the Love of God" shouldn't be read until later in life lest one miss it's essential meaning. An "Introduction to the Devout Life" is a good precursor. I have read 30 of the titles you listed, so I won't write them all out here.
I have also read some of the other authors, but different titles. It's not easy to pick favorites, but I'll try. These are not in any particular order: Anything by Chesterton, I read all of those listed before age Journal of a Soul made a huge impression on me when I was in college. The Diary of a Country Priest helped me understand priests are human.
My high school teacher gave me Spiritual Combat, and it was very helpful in taming me down. I loved Sheen's Life of Christ. The Imitation of Christ is probably an all time favorite. Story of a Soul is tied with Imitation. I feel there are wonderful books missing from the list.
Which of these have you read? Which are your favorite and why? Update: I have two more follow-up posts where I explain how to build a Catholic eBook library on the cheap and list out of more of the best Catholic books. Don E.
David Brandt. Our Lady of Guadalupe. Johann du Toit. Michelle Pitts. Matthew Sawczyn. Richard Felipes. Tanya Maitland. Charles Lewis. Holly Denman. Michael Ariawan Tandy. Is this list a good one for Protestants wanting to investigate the Catholic faith? I would say so. Good luck on your journey. Orthodox Catholic. Anyway, I mean this as a constructive criticism and thank you for your work. Kathy Lamb. Diana West. Love the list, Brandon!
John Rose. Dorothy Krietemeyer. Gail has a trilogy of adult-level, page-turning novels sprinkled with Catholic teaching and apologetics: a sermon, a warning for out age, and a realistic fiction thriller all in one.
Ben Adam studies philosophy at Boston College and engages in theological discussions with a motley group of students who represent Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, and Muslim beliefs - covering a multitude of moral themes and religious questions, including the mystery of good and evil. The quiet life of a middle-age widower is turned upside down when his college-age son disappears without a trace, leading him on an odyssey of adventure and peril, stretched nearly to the breaking point by the inexplicable suffering he witnesses and experiences, he discovers unexpected sources of strength as he presses onward in the hope of recovering his son--and himself.
Theophilos A somewhat historical novel about the man to whom St.
The Last Catholic in America (Loyola Classics) [John R. Powers, Amy Welborn, Andrew Greeley] on dynipalo.tk *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Editorial Reviews. Book Description. First Confession and its terrors. First grade with eighty-four other students and one nun to rule them all. The agony and the.
Luke addressed his Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles. Not the same story, but similar genre to the movie "Paul the Apostle" Island of the World A dramatic novel of religious faith and divine providence in the midst of great evils, war, suffering, and radical injustice.
Read a review and comments.
Children of the Last Days series of apocalyptic novels explores the fate of the Catholic Church in the end times. Click here for information about the order they should be read. If you liked C. Dwight Longenecker. Like the Screwtape Letters , it's a collection of fictional letters of the devils' tricks and temptations. Only its about Catholics who are being tempted, and is written as taking place during the Season of Lent, with a letter for each day The Loser Letters by Mary Eberstadt.
A series of advice letters from an enthusiastic convert to the cause of the "new atheists" creates a witty satire about the fictional conversion of a young adult Christian to atheism. Read the foreword and reviews at ignatius. His astute observation of modern legal and political culture, as well as the state of the church 40 years after Vatican II, make this much more than just an ordinary thriller. A well researched historical novel that shows the impact of war and individuals struggling to deal with the incredible challenges. The Tripods Attack! John McNichol has created a fictional account of a young G.
Chesterton, whose adventures during a Martian invasion lead him to Catholic values through encounters with H. Wells, Fr. Brown and other fictional friends. Highly recommended if you like C. Lewis or Tolkein, or just want a Catholic alternative to Harry Potter.
But sometimes. Eighty-four first graders in a classroom ruled by just one nun. Welcome to Chicago Classics! Newly ordained priest that I was, I could hardly claim adult status. Annual Potluck Martion J.
And now the sequel: The Emperor of North America - The Young Chesterton Chronicles Book 2 re-imagines the famous Catholic author as a young man living in an alternative Edwardian age of steam-driven wonders. Alice Thomas Ellis An English writer who died just a couple years ago. A Catholic convert, mother of seven, and a great cook, she wrote on food, family, and faith, with an incredible caustic wit. Read an interview with the author of this novel in line with Dante's Inferno.
A young adult novel for nearly everyone, that captures the imagination and makes you consider the nature of evil. Review in ncregister. See more info at courtshipnow. Michael Giesler Teenagers and adults will enjoy this trilogy of historical novels about conversion to the Christian faith and the resulting persecution the early Christians faced in Rome. Plus a glimpse at how Christianity grew so rapidly throughout the Roman Empire: from the witness of the actions of one Catholic at a time. The Landing Place by Fr.
Serafim Gascoigne A supernatural adventure novel written by a Greek Orthodox priest from Seattle, based on his extensive travels, it is historical, fast-paced and full of fascinating characters, who have a strong overall sense of Christian values, morality and providence.
Written for teens but will be enjoyed by adults. Passport by Christopher Blunt A Catholic coming of age story that appeals to both men and women with an engaging combination of adventure and romance in one man's search for healing as he learns to love and sacrifice for his family. Smith This Catholic author creates a cliff hanger adventure trilogy about a parallel world that will be enjoyed by adults and teens alike, teaching morality and faith through fiction novels.
The Grand Inquisitor by John Zmirak A Catholic stand-up comic writes a graphic novel of intrigue and entertainment that actually appreciates religion and defends Catholicism. Joshua: A Parable for Today by Fr. The Misplaced Spy Trial of the Mystic William Granger is a Catholic father of 3 sons, who has written two of a trilogy young adult action-adventure books about a boy, Anabar, who struggles with deciding what he wants to do with his life.