For centuries, Christians have been challenged and inspired by the writings of the early church fathers. Their exhortations, thoughts, and meditations have been a beacon of light and hope to church leaders, laity, and theologians including Martin Luther, John Calvin, and John Wesley. Day by Day with the Early Church Fathers presents selections of these writings in a format that makes them readily accessible for daily meditation. Its 366 sections include powerful Bible passages and devotional readings taken from the 38-volume series The Early Church Fathers, first published in 1885. While the language of each devotion has been updated for readability, the original meaning has been preserved. Short biographical summaries lend insight into the lives of the early church fathers. Also the book’s subject index helps readers to easily locate selections on specific topics.
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St. John Chrysostom wrote two letters to his friend Theodore, who along with St. John and his friend Basil, committed to a life of celibacy and spiritual living; however, Theodore was unable to keep his commitments and later fell into lustful passions and strayed quite afar off from godliness. These letters are St. John’s heartfelt [...]
St Cyprian, third-century bishop of Carthage, developed a theory of church unity almost universally accepted up to the European Reformation: to be a member of the Body of Christ you needed to be in communion with a priest who was in communion with a bishop who in turn was in communion with all other bishops [...]
As word of the wisdom and purity of the Desert Fathers and Mothers spread throughout the Roman Empire, Christians streamed to the caves of these hermits, seeking counsel on the interior life. The hermits’ ascetic practices and teachings were a shining witness to a living faith – offering wisdom for both monastic and lay Christians. [...]
“Love little things, and strive for that which is modest and simple. The Lord watches over us, and He is pleased that you long for His peace. Until the soul is ready, He will only sometimes allow us to see that He is present everywhere and fills all things. At these moments the soul feels [...]
Confronting and Controlling Thoughts According to the fathers of the Philokalia Orthodox spirituality places great emphasis on thoughts (logismoi) since everything we do begins in the mind. The Fathers of the Philokalia have much to teach about confronting and controlling thoughts. Since the average person experiences 4000 thoughts each day, the experiences of these Fathers [...]