Saturday, June 25, 2011


The Royal Path?

What is this, and should I really worry about reading Bishop Kallistos Ware's books as a catechumen?


  1. Oh dear. You will learn that there is a lot of 'stuff' out there. Especially as a catechumen, stick to what your priest advises you to read. You're really not in a state to be able to discern the good from the bad, and not all that is good is good for you right *now*. Various people may suggest things for you to read, and if you know this person and trust them and don't feel like they're headed over the falls then you might be able to read it. But even people with the best of intentions will sometimes suggest a book to someone that they're not ready for, even if the book is good in and of itself.

    In the case of this website, I would ignore it. Anything written by someone who is scismatic ("We're more Orthodox than anyone else and won't contaminate ourselves in the least.") is bound to be bad reading for not only you, but anyone. I happen to know who the person is who owns the website and when I saw her name I was not at all surprised. I knew her many years ago when she had been Orthodox for a year or two. Even then she was very zealous, only eating hummus (and nothing else) during the fast, grabbing visitors to the church and telling them bizzare things, etc. She moved on not too long after that, seeking something that was "more Orthodox" (we were at an awesome OCA church at the time - very, very healthy).

    FWIW, my husband has a post, "Recommended reading" ( on his blog. The funny thing is, he says, "If you're going to read one book on Orthodoxy then I recommend The Orthodox Way by Fr. Kallistos Ware." Obviously, the advice I gave above applies here too and you should check with your own priest! You might enjoy Father's blog anyway because it's meant to be instructional for when we had catecumens at our church.

    [word verification: "blest" (c;]

  2. In total agreement with Mat Anna. Never saw that website before but it screamed 'stay away' to me! There are some fridges in Orthodoxy that want to say they are better than the rest. I run away from these very fast. My priest here has taught beginning classes from the book Orthodox Way and for me this book was very beautiful and helpful when I was a catachumen.

  3. Thank you both.

    Perhaps not surprisingly, The Orthodox Way was the first book I read on the subject. I have also read other things by him, and resonated soundly with his conversion story, as I wrote here.

    I will look into your husband's blog.

  4. Roman chiming in here to agree with the ladies above.

  5. IMHO, Whenever one person takes it upon his or herself to declare what it safe and what is not- that's a sure shootin' sign that they should be avoided. If I've learned anything about Orthodoxy, its that one person is not the arbiter of truth. Would that we could all be as enlightened as the owner of that blog. NOT!


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