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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The Orthodox Faith

Above is a link to a set of books I was given as a Baptism present. I think it is perhaps the best short summary of Orthodox belief and praxis that I have come across so far. Fr Thomas Hopko has done a sterling job, and this really does rate highly as catechisms go.

It is much more in-depth than the Q&A Catechism of St Philaret of Moscow, which tends to just answer questions with one-liners, without much of an explanation of the answer.

I have completed the 1st volume on doctrine, and I find it to be very detailed and yet concise. I especially appreciate the section on the Oecumenical Councils, in which he places each in the context of the questions that it sought to address, and then gives detail about what was pronounced and what this means in terms of our beliefs. It really is simple and straightforward without being patronising.

I have nearly finished the second volume on worship, and think that it is marvellous. The detail he gives about the liturgical year is extremely helpful, and brings home the treasure that we have in the Church year - the sanctification of time, where we are constantly called on and challenged to focus on the great mysteries of our Faith.

I can't wait to read the rest, and would recommend this, without reserve, to anybody who is seeking to learn more about the Orthodox Faith, or even who wants a reference book to answer some of the more basic questions.

A wonderful catechetical tool!

1 comment:

Ian said...

Indeed. I enjoyed and benefited from them all. I don't think I've quite finished the fourth [a few more sections to go], but I have been greatly blessed, informed and encouraged by them.

A wonderful Baptism present.