Sunday, January 10, 2010

Intro to Catholicism

New Reader Sarah has asked for some help in learning just what the Catholic church teaches and knowing a bit about the Catholic church.

I don't think I would send someone first looking into Catholicism directly to the Catechism of the Catholic church because some of the language, rhetoric and footnotes can be a bit daunting. That is a good resource though that every Catholic should have and certainly someone who claims to be doing a deep study of Catholicism ( ahem - Jennie) should have a copy.

Nonetheless a list of good books and resources to refer people too would be quite helpful.

For my high school students I found Introduction To Catholicism: A Complete Course to be very helpful and I learned form it as well!

David Armstrong's e-books in the sidebar are good.

Jeff Cavin's Catholicism 101
is good although I have only heard part of it.

Why Do Catholics Do That? is also a good read.

Suggest some more in the comments and I'll add them to the list.


Anonymous said...

Gosh that was quick!


I will be back later to have a look at the links.

unknown anon said...

Actually, Catholicism for Dummies is really quite good, simple enough for the unfamiliar to understand without being oversimplified to the point of misunderstanding.

Lynn said...

I was going to suggest Catholicism for Dummies, but with the caveat that somethings in there just feel wrong to me, as a former Evangelical. I think maybe the wording isn't always precise or something. So it may be a great introduction, but if it makes you raise your eyebrows, go ahead and ask somebody for clarification.

amulbunny said...

Question about your mass readings. I thought we were all on Lectionary series 3 and not 2?
Happy Baptism of our Lord.

amulbunny said...

Whoops I meant C and not B. Brain is overworked. Very ill dad in hospital.

Barbara C. said...

I like Catholicism for Dummies except for the explanation of the section on Bible compilation. For instance, the book claims that the Gospel of Matthew was the first written. While this what was customarily believed, most scholars contend that Mark was actually written first.

But other than that peeve, I thought the book did an excellent job of explaining doctrines and concepts.

Barbara C. said...

Jen @ Conversion Diary as her "conversion through books list". One that looks really good that doesn't my library doesn't have is By What Authority by Mark Shea about Sacred Tradition.

Erin said...

I agree with checking out Conversion Diary.

One other great place to ask specific questions is the Catholic Spitfire Grill yahoo group. (

That group has been a tad slow lately, but if you have a question, you will get answers there.

I read a lot of conversion stories, starting with Rome Sweet Home by Scott and Kimberly Hahn. I have to admit that I'm not crazy about some of his other books (more a style issue than a content one), but Rome Sweet Home was a fast but good read. I liked Crossing the Tiber by Stephen Ray even more.

Happy reading!

Moonshadow said...

thought we were all on Lectionary series 3 and not 2?

I was thrown off a bit yesterday too.

Oftentimes, for feasts, there are optional readings. Yesterday could have been Is. 42 or Is. 40 and Acts 10 or Titus 2. Gospel reading followed the cycle.

Msgr. Ronald Knox, The Belief of Catholics.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the suggestions. I'm going to have a look at them on Amazon later today and I've bookmarked the websites.