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 Post subject: The move from apologetics to theology
PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:15 am 
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Sons of Thunder
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My father is currently undergoing the RCIA process. He was a lifelong Soutern Baptist and has attended a Catholic church for about a decade but just couldn't make the move until recently. As a result, he is familiar with the teachings of the Church.

He has inquired about "deeper" theological works rather than something written strictly as an apologetic bit. He has little philosophical training beyond Hobbes, Locke, etc. I don't know what I should suggest as most theological works I've read lean heavily on a specific philosophical school. In other words, I don't think handing him a copy of Rahner would do much good.

Any ideas?


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:17 am 
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To give an idea of his context, what sort of apologetical works has he already waded through?

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:19 am 
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Kreeft and Tacelli's Handbook of Christian Apologetics does some theology intro stuff. Beyond that, I'd try Sheed's Theology and Sanity or, if he wants a little gentler intro, Sheed's Theology for Beginners.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 10:21 am 
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Mostly Scott Hahn. He's been through some others (Karl Keating, I think), but that's all I know of.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 10:34 am 
Theology and Sanity - I'll second that. It's a great place to begin.

I kinda began with the summa- the long one- just picked up book 1 off the shelf one day and began to read. I don't suggest it for beginniners at all. I understand it fairly well, and can't explain it very well at all yet :).

He might also like some ECF stuff, too, I'd bet.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 11:31 am 
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Theology and Sanity is a great recommendation.

Maybe some works by Augustine?

Also Father Garrigou-Lagrange is good. He isn't that difficult to understand.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 11:31 am 
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HalJordan wrote:
Mostly Scott Hahn. He's been through some others (Karl Keating, I think), but that's all I know of.



In that case, then I'd second Obi's recommendations. I'd start with Theology for Beginners and then to Theology and Sanity.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 12:42 pm 
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I'd go with some G.K. Chesterton: Orthodoxy.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 4:11 pm 
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Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma by Ludwig Ott and the Catechism of the Council of Trent.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 4:14 pm 
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Ott isn't designed for teaching, so if he wants to go that route, I'd go with the Catechism.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 5:25 pm 
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Don't forget GKC's "The Everlasting Man".

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:02 pm 
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For me, the half way point was:

Sheed, Theology for Beginners, then Theology and Sanity.

what threw me over the edge:

De Lubac's, Catholicism and Splendor of the Church

But de Lubac is way too heavy for somebody who's only introduction to theology is Sheed...

Back to easier stuff:

1. Sheed
2. The more theological/philosophical stuff of Frank Sheed.
3. Catechism
4. Vatican II Documents
5. Documents of John Paul II

Then...

6. The apostolic Fathers: Ignatius of Antioch, Polycarp, Clement.
7. Post apostolic Fathers: Justin (me!), Irenaeus.

Then...

Some of Ratzinger stuff (motiviating factor: he is the pope)... I would do his more simple works, Interviews, Milestones, God is Near us....

Then...

7. More difficult Ratzinger stuff: In the Beginning, The End of Time, Thye Nature and Mission of Theology, Truth and Tolerance.

Then...

8. Shorter Summa, Aquinas with some introduction to Thomas

Then...

De Lubac! :)

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:05 pm 
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I suppose up in the beginning stages I would include Scott Hahn. I personally don't read him anymore, but I do realize the value of his books for people in a sort of limbo between apoloigetics and theology. His stuff can be helpful...

But don't become a Hahn-Head! :)

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:06 pm 
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resourcement wrote:
Then...

De Lubac! :)


Antihistamines can help with that.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:16 pm 
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Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
resourcement wrote:
Then...

De Lubac! :)


Antihistamines can help with that.


I have mine right here! :) I DO get a lot of headaches.

Speaking of de Lubac, I just got (today) the rare and expensive Aspects of Buddhism

Heretic!

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:28 pm 
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Man, I can't type tonight...

In my recommendations for the person who is, much to my applause, moving from the polemical world of apologetics to the enriching world of theology, basking in Catholic sunshine, I meant to say:

The more philosophical/theological writings of Fulton Sheen. Most of his stuff is "fluffy bunnies", but his "Religion without God" would be good.

Also, eventually, Romano Guardini wouldn't be too difficult....

Further, I always recommend to people that they get a good catechetical grasp of the faith before reall pushing deeper theological works. Apologetics only introduces you to so much--DEFENSE oriented things...

The Church has taught much, and it is wise to soak in the "Catholic sunshine" first with her teachings, through a non apologetic lens. I assure you, riches will be found by the mere change of shades.

THEN: de Lubac! 8-)

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:44 pm 
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I agree, Justin and that's why you shouldn't recommend De Lubac (among other reasons). In my recommendations, I forgot to recommend the great Papal Encyclicals from the 19th and 20th centuries. That is to truly bask in Catholic sunshine; what better way to think with the Church's mind than to read these documents?

To start with, I suggest:

Humani Generis
Mediator Dei
Mystici Corporis
Sacra Virginitas
Casti Connubii
Ingravescentibus Malis
Mortalium Animos
Quas Primas
Pascendi Dominici Gregis
Praestantia Scripturae
Satis Cognitum
Rerum Novarum

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:46 pm 
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Matthew wrote:
I agree, Justin and that's why you shouldn't recommend De Lubac (among other reasons). In my recommendations, I forgot to recommend the great Papal Encyclicals from the 19th and 20th centuries. That is to truly bask in Catholic sunshine; what better way to think with the Church's mind than to read these documents?

To start with, I suggest:

Humani Generis
Mediator Dei
Mystici Corporis
Sacra Virginitas
Casti Connubii
Ingravescentibus Malis
Mortalium Animos
Quas Primas
Pascendi Dominici Gregis
Praestantia Scripturae
Satis Cognitum
Rerum Novarum


:)

Mystici Corporis is very good!

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2005 9:47 pm 
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It's like, "The Best Hits of the Popes" album. :wink:

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2005 8:17 am 
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What's a Hahn-Head? Is he viewed with some skepticism? My only experience with his stuff has been from some appearances on EWTN, but it seemed orthodox to me.


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