An affirming gay Christian (GLBT) site dedicated to ...

         "Building (ALL) the Body of Christ in Love!"




Book Store

By Author

By Topic


Benedicta Ward



The Sayings of the Desert Fathers

first became interested in the writings of the Desert Fathers and Mothers after reading some of the writings of Kathleen Norris. As a Benedictine Oblate, she discovered this rich and varied writing and incorporated parts of their wisdom into her own writings. When I came across THE SAYINGS OF THE DESERT FATHERS, translated by an Anglican nun, Sr. Benedicta Ward, I read it and saw why the writings intrigued people such as Norris and others such as Thomas Merton. The writings included in this work were written by people who fled to the desert to become examples of holiness. Some of their writings were recorded and reveal much about the human condition. Their joys and struggles in such an austere life are the foundation of this book. Other writings can be somewhat difficult to understand in our day and age, but these writings still prove interesting.


The book is organized by individual "Abbas" in alphabetical order (Greek alphabetical order, that is). The sayings are numbered and readers should probably read the sayings individually rather than as a biography. I have found that reading them in conjunction with prayer is helpful. I will usually read the various passages until one sticks with me and leads to reflection. The words can have a certain power to them that can both challenge and encourage a reader. Some sayings may say nothing to a reader, but eventually one will stumble upon something that captures one's attention.

Modern readers will find the wisdom of these ancient Christians thought provoking. Readers get little tidbits about early Christianity and see how many of the challenges to the spiritual life are anything but new. Readers will want to keep certain things in mind when reading this volume. The writers were not writing for a twenty-first century audience. Some of the writings can be brutal, cruel, and in some cases misogynistic. Reading with a historical frame of mind is essential, and by doing so, this ancient wisdom can be very relevant to our day and age.



The Lives of the Desert Fathers

This is a must read for anyone who wants to know about Christianity in the Middle East before the Muslim conquests and the following massacres.

The recounts are made by those who saw the events take place and were able to record them without a great relapse of time. I encourage everyone to read this and take it all in, read it a few times, about one year after the last time you read it and each time it is better than the last.

The miracles stories are told very matter of fact and factually with great detail yet they retain their wonder. I admit, I believe all of them wholeheartedly which is rare for me to be able to do. May God bless you to read this and know the love with which it is written and shared.










Amazon Logo

Hit Counter