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Pоpulаr quеstiоn: If I wаntеd tо lеаrn аbоut Саthоliсism, whаt wоuld bе thе bеst bооks tо rеаd?

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  • Pоpulаr quеstiоn: If I wаntеd tо lеаrn аbоut Саthоliсism, whаt wоuld bе thе bеst bооks tо rеаd?

    Аs fаr аs fiсtiоn gоеs, I think thе mоst wеll-rоundеd аnd nuаnсеd dеpiсtiоn оf Саthоliс еxpеriеnсе I'vе sееn is асtuаlly а film саllеd Thе Third Mirасlе. It's rеvеrеnt withоut bеing sаppy, it's gritty withоut bеing dеfаmаtоry. Dеpеnding оn pеrsоnаl biаsеs thе viеwеr hаs gоing intо it, аnyоnе with prо- оr аnti-Саthоliс fееlings саn wаlk аbоut fееling vindiсаtеd оnе wаy оr аnоthеr. I rеspесt thе film fоr thаt rеаsоn: it ассurаtеly dеpiсts Саthоliсism frоm thе pаrish sоup kitсhеns tо thе Соllеgе оf Саrdinаls withоut оvеrtly trying tо sеll аn оvеrаrсhing rеасtiоn tо Саthоliсism itsеlf.

    Whаt dо yоu think аbоut it?

  • #2
    Read the New Testament. It's all about Catholicism. :)
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    • #3
      Like Bede said, the best book you can read is the bible. It still is the number one book that can teach you about God and His teachings. It is complete and can certainly help with any questions you might have in life. Each person interprets the bible's teachings differently, as it pertains to his life. And for me, that's the best thing about it, it can be of complete relevance to you, even at any point in your life.

      Another one I can recommend is the Catechism of the Catholic Church by Pope John Paul II. The book is complete with references from the bible itself for any questions you might have in your mind, It answers questions like, "Why Catholicism?" or "Why do we pray the rosary?" It also discusses the sacraments and their importance in this religion.

      Then, another book that I can recommend is the Life of Christ by Fulton Sheen. I love that the author was able to write the life of Christ in a very understandable way. I recommend this book as a supplement as when you're reading the bible.

      I hope this helps!
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      • #4
        The Catechism is rather heavy going. There is a simplified version called the Compendium to the Catechism of the Catholic Church in question and answer format. It has the same structure as the Catechism and references to paragraphs in the full Catechism.

        There is very interesting trilogy of books by Taylor Marshall (a convert to Catholicism).

        The first book is The Crucified Rabbi: Judaism and the origins of Catholic Christianity. It's full of parallels between Judaism and Catholicism.

        The second book is The Catholic Perspective on Paul: Paul and the Origins of Catholic Christianity. It covers Paul on Baptism, Purgatory, the Eucharist, Priesthood and more

        The third book is The Eternal City: Rome and the Origins of Catholic Christianity. It covers Daniel's Roman prophecy, Peter & the evidnce for his being in Rome, and more.

        All three are very readable and fascinating.
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        • #5
          Originally posted by Bede View Post
          Read the New Testament. It's all about Catholicism. :)
          The New Testament provides a good understanding of Catholicism if you read what Jesus said about those who follow tradition rather than the Bible.
          Clyde Herrin's Blog
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          • #6
            Originally posted by theophilus View Post
            The New Testament provides a good understanding of Catholicism if you read what Jesus said about those who follow tradition rather than the Bible.
            Yes, Jesus, and Paul, supported Tradition.
            Comment>

            • #7
              The obvious answer to the question is the bible, and I hope the obvious (comedy) answers aren't lost on the OP.

              We could ask the same question for all religions though so I'll ask another one and answer it. What book should I read to learn about Islam? The Koran maybe?

              And so we go on...
              Comment>

              • #8
                Rediscovering Catholicism by Mathew Kelley is one.
                Comment>

                • #9
                  Originally posted by WilliamV View Post
                  Аs fаr аs fiсtiоn gоеs, I think thе mоst wеll-rоundеd аnd nuаnсеd dеpiсtiоn оf Саthоliс еxpеriеnсе I'vе sееn is асtuаlly а film саllеd Thе Third Mirасlе. It's rеvеrеnt withоut bеing sаppy, it's gritty withоut bеing dеfаmаtоry. Dеpеnding оn pеrsоnаl biаsеs thе viеwеr hаs gоing intо it, аnyоnе with prо- оr аnti-Саthоliс fееlings саn wаlk аbоut fееling vindiсаtеd оnе wаy оr аnоthеr. I rеspесt thе film fоr thаt rеаsоn: it ассurаtеly dеpiсts Саthоliсism frоm thе pаrish sоup kitсhеns tо thе Соllеgе оf Саrdinаls withоut оvеrtly trying tо sеll аn оvеrаrсhing rеасtiоn tо Саthоliсism itsеlf.

                  Whаt dо yоu think аbоut it?
                  I think the problem you are going to find in trying to learn about Catholicism is that they are as diverse as any other group. I have spoken with Catholics who range from conservative to Charismatic, and like most groups, nominal to fanatical.

                  So the Catholicism you come to understand under the leadership of one fellowship may differ greatly from the Catholicism of others. Best to keep in mind that faith is something that is generated from a relationship with Christ, rather than something acquired through affiliation with any earthly organization. Doesn't matter the denomination, in all of them, even in fellowships with outstanding teachers and leaders who sincerely love the Lord and are led of Christ, you will be faced with how that translates to the individual in the particular stage of their walk with Christ.

                  Let me ask you a question: who do you think understands faith in Christ better, the believer that that routinely studies Scripture, or the one who never does?


                  God bless.
                  Comment>

                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Marie View Post
                    Rediscovering Catholicism by Mathew Kelley is one.
                    Wouldn't this book be more about reaffirming a person's faith in Catholicism rather than teaching about it though?

                    While it would obviously give the basics about the religion, I'd expect it to deal more with helping people who have become lost, rather than teaching a new follower.
                    Comment>

                    • #11
                      Originally posted by pwarbi View Post

                      Wouldn't this book be more about reaffirming a person's faith in Catholicism rather than teaching about it though?

                      While it would obviously give the basics about the religion, I'd expect it to deal more with helping people who have become lost, rather than teaching a new follower.
                      Yes, you are right. Just offering it as I'm not sure where everyone is coming from.
                      Comment>

                      • #12
                        Self learning might be good, but it's always better to have someone who actually knows the stuff, and teach it to you first hand. A local pastor or a Theology teacher at your local academy would probably be able to answer your questions more than any book, because they actually know the stuff after years of studying, and they can better understand the teachings more than you, a beginner, will ever will. Try and reach out. Usually, a hand would reach back to pull you up. Good luck!
                        Comment>

                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Marie View Post

                          Yes, you are right. Just offering it as I'm not sure where everyone is coming from.
                          And it's a book that I haven't read, but now it's been mentioned I will look out for, so thank you for the post.

                          I wasn't trying to be awkward by the way, I just think that reaffirming a faith, is different than teaching it from scratch.
                          Comment>

                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Marie View Post
                            Rediscovering Catholicism by Mathew Kelley is one.
                            An excellent book.
                            Comment>
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