16 February 2007

Patristic Quote for the Day

Everything that partakes of [the Holy Spirit's] grace is filled with joy according to its capacity - the capacity of its nature, not of His power. - St. Basil the Great, *On the Holy Spirit* par. 22


Anonymous said...

Pastor Weedon,
If I want to start reading the early church Fathers, where should I start? Will you give some recommendations to a beginner? The choices are overwhelming.

BTW, I have enjoyed your PreLenten sermons. You have a way of talking about the Lord's Supper that is different than how I usually hear it discussed - even different than the SC and LC. I can't put my finger on how it is different; it just seems to go farther. Is this because of your readings of the Church Fathers? Also, how does one “use” the sacrament? Is it the same as partaking and believing, or does it go beyond this? Sorry for all the questions.

Thanks much,

William Weedon said...

Oh, my. That is always a challenging question. I usually recommend: *Early Christian Writings* translated by Maxwell Staniforth. VERY accessible translation. Good for the subapostolic fathers. Then I'd turn to St. Vladimir Seminary Press, and browse around for patristic writings that look interesting to you. They're all paperback (read: cheap!) and you generally are getting "the best" of the Father. If you've not read St. Athanasius' *On the Incarnation* that one is a priceless gem. Of course, when it comes to St. Augustine, the two biggies that everyone reads are *City of God* and *Confessions* - both are outstanding. But I think my favorite of his is *On Nature and Grace* - it's free online. Google it and it will show up.

I'm glad you enjoyed the pre-Lenten sermons. I'm not sure how to account for a difference in my way of talking about the Eucharist. Maybe from reading the fathers, but as likely from reading Luther, Chemnitz, and Gerhard. The Supper is simply the center of the Christian's journey through this life, where we taste and are strengthened by the Feast that will be ours eternally in the age to come, given us in time as our sustenance.