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Resources

As Episcopalians, we recognize that our faith is best expressed in our liturgy, in what we say and do together in our worship. However, it can be helpful to explain what we believe in a longer discourse, such as in discussions with other Christians or in a book. Here are some resources you might explore to consider for yourself what we believe and to deepen your faith:

 

An Introduction to Christian Belief

 The Alpha Course

In-person and on-line course that seeks to introduce the basics of the Christian faith through a series of talks and discussions.

CS Lewis, Mere Christianity (1952)

One of the most popular introductions to Christian faith ever written. Brings together Lewis’s legendary broadcast talks during WWII, yet it remains strikingly fresh for the modern reader. First third addresses the moral structure of the universe, followed by an explanation of what Christians believe, and finishes with discussion of Christian behavior (256 pages)

 

NT Wright, Simply Christian (2006)

First third explores ways that we can sense God’s influence in us, followed by an explanation of the story of God’s dealings with humanity, and finishes with discussion of how we should respond to the actions of God (256 pages)

Tim Keller, The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism (2008)

First half deals with common objections to Christianity. The middle seeks to make a positive case for the rationality of belief. Finally there’s a basic treatment of the main Christian beliefs. (336 pages)  

 

John Stott, Basic Christianity (2012)

Begins with the evidence for Christ being the resurrected Son of God and then proceeds with a more thorough treatment of what and how to believe. Assumes belief in God and general trust in the Bible. Not the first book for most inquirers but clear and practical. (192 pages)

 

Rebecca McLaughlin, Confronting Christianity: 12 Hard Questions for the World's Largest Religion  (2019)

Explores issues--such as the reality of suffering, the complexity of sexuality, the desire for diversity, the success of science--that keep many of us from considering faith in Christ. 

Testimonies of Conversion

The case for faith is often made best not through rational argument, but through the witness given by the lives of those who have made the “leap of faith”:

CS Lewis (former atheist), Surprised by Joy (1955)

Dorothy Day (former anarchist), The Long Loneliness: Autobiography of the Catholic Social Activist (1952)

Robert Webber, Evangelicals on the Canterbury Trail: A Pilgrimage to the Liturgical Church (1989)

Lee Strobel (former atheist), The Case for Christ: A Journalist's Personal Investigation  (1998)

Lauren Winner (former Jew), Girl Meets God: On the Path to a Spiritual Life (2002)        

Francis Collins (former materialist), The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief (2007)

Rosalind Butterfield, The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert: English Professor's Journey into Christian Faith (2012)

Andrew Klavan, The Great Good Thing: A Secular Jew Comes to Faith in Christ (2016)

Abigail Favale (former atheist), Into the Deep: An Unlikely Catholic Conversion (2018)

Michael Guillen (former materialist), Believing Is Seeing: A Physicist Explains How Science Shattered His Atheism 

      and Revealed the Necessity of Faith (2021)

Sohrab Ahmari (former Muslim), From Fire, by Water: My Journey to the Catholic Faith (2019)

Alister McGrath (former materialist), Return from a Distant Country (2022)

 
 

Christian Living

It is one thing to ask, What do you believe?, but it is another to ask, So what? How does that impact your life, how you live? Here are some books that explore what it means to live out our faith:

 

Tim Keller, Counterfeit Gods (2009)

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship (1959)

Esther de Waal, Seeking God: The Way of St. Benedict (1984)

Richard Foster, Celebrating Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth (1978)

Tish Harrison Warren, Liturgy of the Ordinary: Sacred Practices in Everyday Life (2016)

Stanley Hauerwas and William Willimon, Resident Aliens: Life in the Christian Colony (1989)

David DaSilva, Sacramental Life: Spiritual Formation Through the Book of Common Prayer (2008)

Robert Webber, Ancient-Future Faith: Rethinking Evangelicalism for a Postmodern World (1999)

James KA Smith, You Are What You Love (2019)

Leslie Newbigin, Foolishness to the Greeks (1988)

Eugene Peterson, The Jesus Way (2011)

Rosalind Butterfield, The Gospel Comes with a House Key (2018)

Tim Tennent, For the Body: Recovering a Theology of Gender, Sexuality, and the Human Body (2020)

Tim Keller, The Meaning of Marriage (2011)

Megan McKinley, The Lies of Singleness: Following the One Who Holds the Truth (2023) 

Wesley Hill, Spiritual Friendship: Finding Love in the Church as a Celibate Gay Christian (2015) 

Further Resources:

 

Bible Resources

BibleGateway

New Testament for Everyone series by NT Wright

Bible in 50 Words

 

Prayer Resources

Daily Lectionary

'When you provide an email address the site sends out the daily [ECUSA] lectionary starting the very next day'.

Daily Office (from the US Episcopal Church 1979 Book of Common Prayer)

This marvelous resource, sponsored by Mission St Clare, includes morning and evening prayer, compline, and daily devotions. The site will eventually offer Spanish as well as English.

The (Online) Book of Common Prayer (US)

This is the official 1979 Book of Common Prayer including The Psalter or Psalms of David. Available as html.

 

Episcopal Resources

Episcopal Glossary (we have many peculiar words)

The Book of Common Prayer

Comprehensive site, with links to prayer books used within the Anglican Communion.

Common Worship

In 2000, the Church of England unveiled a new generation of liturgy that brought together many diverse styles, contributing to the vibrant worship of God across the nation. The Common Worship website provides free access to all of the liturgical texts for people to read and download for their own use.

 

Ministry Partners

Episcopal Diocese of Southern Virginia

Good Shepherd Episcopal School

CARITAS: community of caring that provides them a safe space for healing and recovery

FOCUS: ministry to high school students 

Pregnancy Resource Center of Richmond: provides resources, support, and counseling to at-risk mothers

FeedMore: foodbank of Richmond

 
 
 
 
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