(Some of the links below are affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting this blog!)
Each year I set reading goals for myself. Some years I create reading challenges based on genre, other years based on topic. This past year I read 100 books (you can read about my favorites here!).
One thing remains consistent each year, though: I try to read a few Orthodox books. These could be fictional books written by Orthodox writers or with Orthodox themes (like Icon or Letters to Saint Lydia), classic works of spirituality (like The Way of a Pilgrim), or more recent works of theology or lives of the saints (like Everyday Saints).
Here are the:
Orthodox Books I Read in 2019
Becoming a Healing Presence by Dr. Albert Rossi
I had the privilege of meeting Dr. Rossi a couple of years ago at the Ancient Faith Writing and Podcasting Conference. I was immediately struck by his quiet, gentle presence, which propelled me to read his book. Just like its author, Becoming a Healing Presence is a quiet, gentle book that packs a theological punch. If you are looking for inspiration on ways to live in the present moment, commit yourself to prayer and stillness, and minister to others, this is a book you should add to your reading list.
Bread & Water, Wine & Oil by Fr. Meletios Weber
This book had been on my To Be Read list for quite awhile, so I was glad to have some time during the summer to read it. While the first section was a bit more philosophical and theological than I had been prepared for, I really enjoyed the second section which described and reflected on the sacraments as experiences of God.
The Maternal Body by Dr. Carrie Frederick Frost
Full disclosure: Carrie Frederick Frost is a friend and one extremely amazing lady. She and my husband were in the same doctoral program together at the University of Virginia, and she and her family attended the same parish as we did during that time. And, during that time, Carrie, unexpectedly, had triplets. What happens when you have triplets while completing your dissertation? You write about the theology of the Incarnation and the way it manifests itself in the bodies of mothers, of course! Seriously, I loved the book. It gave me so much to reflect on about my own experience as a mother and an Orthodox Christian.
Time and Despondency by Dr. Nicole Roccas
Finally, I finished the year by reading about despondency. Perhaps not the lightest or most light-hearted of topics, but it was a thought-provoking read. I particularly enjoyed the final section filled with practical “stepping stones” and ways to regain the present in your life.
This year I am hoping to read 6 Orthodox books and will start with Metropolitan Anthony Bloom’s classic Beginning to Pray.
What are your favorite Orthodox books? I’d love to add them to my list!