CATHOLIC READING LIST:
The Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux: The Story of a Soul (John Beevers, translator)
Thoughts of St. Therese: The Little Flower of Jesus Carmelite of the Monastery of Lisieux, 1873-1897 by St. Therese of Lisieux
Get yourself to a Catholic bookstore such as St. Jude (www.stjudeshop.com). Even if you thought religion was a bore, you are bound to find titles that spark your interest, whether it’s in philosophy, Christian history, the apostles, the wild stories of the saints, canon law, insane miracles, the fall of the angels, heaven, hell, marriage, divorce, the appearances of Jesus after He rose, world religions, Schism, Reformation, Christian saints who have subsisted on no food or water, but only daily Eucharist…
BOOKS CAN BE ORDERED ONLINE AT:
http://www.staycatholic.com/reading_list.htm (book list)
http://www.catholicexchange.com/vm/index.asp?vm_id=2&art_id=22915&sec_id=43792 (buy the Guide to the Passion)
Read the biographies of the great saints, starting with St. Teresa of Avila, St. Therese of Lisieux (the Little Flower), St. Bernadette, St. Catherine of Sienna, St. Clare of Assisi, and St. Francis of Assisi. How about reading about the Philadelphia area saints: St. John Neumann, Mother Katharine Drexel (niece of Drexel University’s founder), etc.
BOOKS ON SPIRITUALITY, PRAYER AND MASS
From the Ashes by Janet W. Butler
If you hang around a lot of people who challenge your faith, and you want to defend the Church kindly, lovingly, politely and prayerfully, you can start with the booklet: “Beginning Apologetics I: How to Explain and Defend the Catholic Faith” and some Catholic Answers tracts. You might read Karl Keating’s Catholicism and Fundamentalism. You might subscribe to an apologetics magazine such as “The Rock,” “Envoy” or “The Catholic Answe.r”.
http://www.salvationhistory.com/library/apologetics/index.cfm# (St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology)
Why not take a class at your local Catholic university?
Or a Bible study at your parish church?
With fewer of us attending Catholic colleges, we have got to educate ourselves continually on the truths of our faith. It is a lifelong responsibility.
If you live in the Philadelphia area, check out St. Charles of Borromeo Seminary (www.scs.edu) in Wynnewood, which offers classes and a master’s degree program for lay people. People come from all over the East Coast come to learn at this prestigious institution, which also opens up its vast library to the public. (scroll down for course offerings)
Courses at the International Institute for Culture in Phila (www.iiculture.org) include:
*two-month Greek and Latin Institute each summer to help Catholics connect with their roots, and to read original works of St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Augustine
*three-week seminar in Bavaria on the relationship between faith and culture
*six-week total immersion Spanish program in Mexico for seminarians
Stuck at home? Catholic Distance University (CDU) offers master’s degree programs in Catholic Studies that you complete from the comfort of your home. But beware . . . heavy reading is required! whole program is between $7,000 and $8,000. See http://www.cdu.edu/
NON-CATHOLICS who wish to learn more about the Catholic faith can sign up for RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) at any parish church. The course can also serve as preparation for Baptism (if the individual was not baptized) as well as Confession, the Eucharist and Confirmation.
CLASS INFO AT ST. CHARLES SEMINARY IN WYNNEWOOD, PA (http://www.scs.edu/div/relstudy/relstudy.html)
Recent evening courses at the seminary included:
Introduction to the Old Testament
Introduction to Biblical Spirituality
Liturgical Celebration of the Sacraments
Catechism of the Catholic Church: Pillars II and IV
Issues of Social Justice in Catholic Teaching
African Saints and African-American Holy Men & Women
Greek and Latin Roots for Theological Studies
Catechism of the Catholic Church: Pillars II and IV
For info, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 610-785-6287
If you already know everything, teach a class at your parish on your pet subject. Organize a Bible study. Talk to your priest.
Below are some classic Catholic works.
The Confessions of St. Augustine
Enchiridion (On Faith, Hope and Charity) by St.Augustine
Uniformity of God’s Will by St.Alphonsus Liguori
On Loving God by St.Bernard of Clairvaux
The Dialogue of the Seraphic Virgin by St. Catherine of Siena
The Spiritual Exercises St. Ignatius of Loyola
Mount Carmel by St. John of the Cross
Dark Night of the Soul by St. John of the Cross
A Spiritual Canticle of the Soul and the Bridegroom Christ by St. John of the Cross
The Way of Perfection by St. Teresa of Avila
The Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis
Summa Theologica of St. Thomas Aquinas
Finally, there is always the 232-page book, The Catholic Lifetime Reading Plan (by John A. Hardon), which provides a lifetime plan for reading all the important Catholic writers through the history of the Church and up to today.
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