Wednesday 26 December 2018

Catholic Christianity - Peter Kreeft - A Complete Catechism of Catholic Beliefs Based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church

Catholic Christianity: A Complete Catechism of Catholic Beliefs Based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church
Peter Kreeft
Ignatius Press

ISBN 9780898707984

I read this book as part of my working through the Catechism in a year. Over the last few years I have read the catechism and other similar books a little bit each day throughout the year. This year I added this book and it took me 4 months of study to work through this volume. This was an excellent read. It was a wonderful study tool. It helped me go so much deeper in my study of the Catholic Faith. The sections in this volume are:

PART I: Theology (What Catholics Believe)
Chapter 1: Faith 
Chapter 2: God 
Chapter 3: Creation 
Chapter 4: Man 
Chapter 5: Jesus Christ 
Chapter 6: The Holy Spirit 
Chapter 7: The Holy Catholic Church 
Chapter 8: The Forgiveness of Sins 
Chapter 9: The Resurrection of the Body 
Chapter 10: Life Everlasting

PART II: Morality (How Catholics Live)
Chapter 1: The Essence of Catholic Morality 
Chapter 2: Human Nature as the Basis for Morality 
Chapter 3: Some Fundamental Principles of Catholic Morality 
Chapter 4: Virtues and Vices
Chapter 5: The First Three Commandments: Duties to God 
Chapter 6: The Fourth Commandment: Family and Social Morality 
Chapter 7: The Fifth Commandment: Moral Issues of Life and Death 
Chapter 8: The Sixth and Ninth Commandments: Sexual Morality 
Chapter 9: The Seventh and Tenth Commandments: Social and Economic Morality
Chapter 10: The Eighth Commandment: Truth

PART III: Sacraments and Prayer (How Catholics Worship)
Chapter 1: Introduction to Catholic Liturgy
Chapter 2: Introduction to the Sacraments
Chapter 3: Baptism and Confirmation
Chapter 4: The Eucharist
Chapter 5: The Sacrament of Penance
Chapter 6: Matrimony 
Chapter 7: Holy Orders 
Chapter 8: Anointing of the Sick 
Chapter 9: Prayer 
Chapter 10: The Lord’s Prayer 
Chapter 11: Mary

This is not a volume I could pick up and read through from beginning to end. At least not do so and really take it in. But by reading 5-15 points a day it was very digestible. In the introduction Dr. Kreeft goes over some of the possible titles this book had, and his reason for them, and reasons for changing. They were:

Mere Christianity
What Is a Catholic

He also states:

“Half a century ago such a book would have been superfluous, for Catholics knew then twenty times more than they know now about everything in their faith: its essence, its theology, its morality, its liturgy, and its prayer; and there were twenty times more books like this one being written. The need was less, and the supply was more. Today the need is much more, and the supply is much less. Since “nature abhors a vacuum”, spiritually as well as physically I offer this unoriginal “basic data” book to those Catholics who have been robbed of the basic data of their heritage.”

The book might be unoriginal, and basic data about Catholicism, but maybe that is what makes it such a treasure. This book is likely one I will read each year for years to come. This book is an amazing resource, for the faithful, for those studying Catholicism, and for those just curios about what Catholicism is all about.

Kreeft has written some amazing books and this is among the best! 

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2018 Catholic Reading Plan!

Other Kreeft Reviews:
Socrates Meets Jesus
The Sea Within
Handbook of Christian Apologetics
Pocket Handbook of Christian Apologetics
The Journey
The Unaborted Socrates
The Best Things In Life
Between Heaven Hell
Doors in the Walls of the World
Catholic Christianity

Contributed to:

Articles That Mention Kreeft:
Opus Dei
Opus Dei Part II
Catholic Catechism Dialogue blog
4 Resources

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