Item description for Instructing Beginners in Faith (The Augustine Series) (v. 5) by Augustine of Hippo, Boniface Ramsey & Raymond Canning...
Overview Written as a reflection on the most suitable way of communicating the heart of Christian faith to those applying for membership of the Church, Instructing Beginners in Faith has been frequently and creatively adapted to serve the needs of education in faith in many different contexts, including the education of clergy and religious education more generally
Publishers Description Although not usually considered to be on the same level as The Confessions or The City of God, to name just two of Augustine's greatest works, the short treatise entitled Instructing Beginners in Faith has in fact had a powerful influence on the Christian Church. It began as a reflection on the most suitable way of communicating the heart of Christian faith to those applying for membership of the Church. In the course of the past sixteen hundred years, however, it has been frequently and creatively adapted to serve the needs of education in faith in many different contexts, including the education of clergy and religious education more generally. The two model catecheses that Augustine sketches, one quite long and the other considerably shorter, not only continue to have relevance today but also provide an important insight into his understanding of the use of scripture and tradition. And Augustine's awareness of the problems that educators face demonstrates his profound grasp of the human condition.
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Studio: New City Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.56" Width: 5.5" Height: 0.51" Weight: 0.56 lbs.
Release Date Mar 7, 2006
Publisher NEW CITY PRESS
Series Works of Saint Augustine
ISBN 1565482395 ISBN13 9781565482395
Availability 0 units.
More About Augustine of Hippo, Boniface Ramsey & Raymond Canning
Augustine, (354-430) was the bishop of Hippo in North Africa and a Father of the Church. Born to a Christian mother and a pagan father, Augustine underwent a profound conversion experience at the age of 32, renouncing his life of sensuality and wordly ambition. Ordained a priest in 391 and made bishop in 396, Augustine was also a pioneer of monasticism and founded a religious rule that is still widely used by men and women in monastic life. James O'Donnell is provost at Georgetown University and editor of the definitive edition of Augustine's Confessions. He is the author of Augustine: A New Biography (Ecco, 2005).
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Fifth Century Ideas Ring True Today Feb 19, 2006
St. Augustine wrote this model instruction for teachers guiding seekers in the first step toward joining the Church. That step consisted of an introduction to the central points of the faith that gives us our identify as Christians. It followed the seeker's stated desire to become a Christian "because of the rest that is hoped for after this life." The introduction consisted of an exposition of historical events from creation to the "present day" (the early 400s), the commandment of love, and the coming of Christ.
In addition, Augustine offers suggestions for the teachers on how to avoid discouragement in a number of different situations, which will ring true with today's catechists. He acknowledges, for example, that repeating simplified explanations may become boring to the instructor. If we find it difficult to repeat familiar phrases suited to the ears of small children, he writes, "we should draw close to these small children with a brother's love...and as a result of our empathy with them, the oft-repeated phrases will sound new to us also."
Today's catechists will also rally to Augustine's instruction on dealing with scandals within the Church. The beginners are to be cautioned about not imitating those in the Church "whom you see to be living evil lives...of greed and pride, or those who engage in any other form of life that the law condemns and punishes."
This work, written more than 1600 years ago, has practical and historical value, and would be of special interest to those involved in instructing beginners in faith today.