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Orthodox Church [Paperback]

Timothy Ware
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
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Book Description

July 1 1993
Since its first publication thirty years ago, Timothy Ware's book has become established throughout the English-speaking world as the standard introduction to the Orthodox Church. Orthodoxy continues to be a subject of enormous interest among Western Christians, and the author believes that an understanding of its standpoint is necessary before the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches can be reunited. He explains the Orthodox views on such widely ranging matters as ecumenical councils, sacraments, free will, purgatory, the papacy and the relation between the different Orthodox churches.

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About the Author

Timothy Ware, His Excellency the Most Reverend Metropolitan Kallistos of Diokleia, was Spalding Lecturer of Eastern Orthodox Studies at Oxford University until his retirement in 2001.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
'All Protestants are Crypto-Papists,' wrote the Russian theologian Alexis Khomiakov to an English friend in the year 1846. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars No longer trustworthy. July 25 1999
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
After its latest revision, Bishop Kallistos (Timothy Ware)'s book no longer provides a good starting point for those generally unfamiliar with the original Christian Church, its history, and its doctrines. This revised edition shows signs of compromise with the general melt-down of bygone Christianity going on in Great Britain. For example, His Grace says that the question of female priests is seen by the Orthodox as an open question; one wonders what in the world he can be talking about, since there isn't a hint of this development in any of the sources of authority the Church understands as binding. (Can you say "when Gehenna freezes over"?) Here, he must be trying to appeal to the culture around him. Additionally, his approach to the lamentable ecumenical efforts in which the Ecumenical Patriarchate is engaged is deplorable: it is simply inconsistent with the Church's history for its hierarchs to participate in WCC events that include pagan prayers, etc., even if only as observers. A non-Orthodox who read this edition at my suggestion came back to me with the notion that Bishop Kallistos' teaching regarding the relationship among the various "Christian" bodies differed from what I had previously explained. That was true, since I had repeated the Church's nearly 2,000-year-old insistence that it is the one, true Way. In this regard, Bishop Kallistos' attempts to be "understanding" are simply going to mislead the heterodox regarding what they are missing (i.e., the New Testament fellowship of Christ). The unbroken witness of the Church disagrees strongly with his "friendly" opinions. Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent book March 24 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent introductory book to the Eastern Orthodox Christianity. I would recommend it to my friends, my students and to anybody who wants to have a general view on the Eastern Orthodox Church.
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Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The Orthodox Church is Eastern Christianity's attempt to introduce itself to Christian readers from either a Protestant or Roman Catholic background. The book is written by Timothy (Kallistos) Ware, an Anglican convert to Orthodox Christianity, making the writing clear for anyone with an English speaking background. This also helps the reader since Ware has perspective from both Western and Eastern Christianity. The book reflects an understanding of both traditions; since the Anglican tradition itself reflects the dual Protestant and Roman Catholic character of the Western Church, Ware is an ideal candidate for explaining the Eastern Orthodox Church to Western Christians of any background. Ware introduces the reader to Orthodox Christianity in two parts: history and theology. The first half of the book is dedicated to the history of the Orthodox Church and is divided chronologically from the Acts of the Apostles to the 11th Century Schism to the attacks made by the militant atheists of Soviet Russia. The second half of the book is dedicated to the theology of the Orthodox Church, looking at a very wide variety of theological issues such as the nature of God, the role of the Church and its sacraments and the requirements for a reunion between the Eastern and the Western Church. The book is accessible and easy to read but highly condensed and meant as the first point of entrance into the world of Orthodox Christianity. Nevertheless, Ware does not leave out details and the book is rich in names, dates and the specific nuances of Orthodox theological positions. The Orthodox Church is the ideal place to start for any English speaking person interested in understanding the Eastern Orthodox tradition. Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Number ONE book on Eastern Orthodoxy Jan. 31 2004
Format:Paperback
"The Orthodox Church," by Timothy (Bishop Kallistos) Ware, is (and has been for decades) the number one book in the English language on the Eastern Orthodox Christian faith. It appears on virtually all recommended reading lists and bibliographies. (Not surprisingly, the number two book is "The Orthodox Way," by the same author.)
The cover states that this title is "a clear, detailed introduction to the Orthodox Church written for the non-Orthodox as well as for Orthodox Christians who wish to know more about their own tradition." I couldn't have said it better myself.
This volume is divided into two sections. Part one covers the history of the Church from the beginnings at Pentecost through Byzantium (the Seven Councils and the Great Schism), then the conversion of the Slavs, the Church under Islam, the Russian Church, and on into the twentieth century. Especially sobering is the author's summary of events surrounding the eastern European Orthodox Churches under communism. Coverage of the growth of the Orthodox Church in North America helps explain the current state of things.
Part two discusses faith and worship and covers such important topics as: Holy Tradition, God and humankind, the theology and structure of the Church, and detailed explanations of various components of Orthodox worship (including sacraments, feasts, fasts and private prayer). The final chapter, entitled "The Orthodox Church and the Reunion of Christians," explains various views within the Church concerning the ecumenical movement and the World Council of Churches, and highlights dialogues with various church bodies including Roman Catholics, Old Catholics, Anglicans, and other Eastern Christian bodies such as the Coptic Church and the Armenian Orthodox Church.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent overview of Orthodoxy
As a Reformed Christian, I enjoyed this book immensely. It really helped me feel that I understand the Orthodox Church and many of its beliefs. Read more
Published on July 2 2004 by Mayor of Tateville
5.0 out of 5 stars Started me on my jouney
I just bought the book to get some kind of understanding of the Orthodox faith, and this book gave me that and a lot more. Read more
Published on May 29 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars History of the Orthodox Church
_The Orthodox Church_ by Timothy/KALLISTOS Ware is a history of the Orthodox Church first published in 1963. Read more
Published on July 13 2003 by zonaras
5.0 out of 5 stars The Other Christianity
There has been a great surge of interest in Eastern Orthodoxy in recent years. Partly owing to the turn towards liturgical worship and historic Christianity by disenchanted... Read more
Published on June 11 2003 by Labarum
5.0 out of 5 stars A great introduction to the Orthodox Church
In most Christian circles, the Orthodox Church is known as the forgotten church because many Christians do not even know of it's existence. Read more
Published on April 17 2003 by Seth Aaron Lowry
5.0 out of 5 stars The best " First Book " on Orthodoxy
This was the first book that I read about Orthodoxy, and with the benefit of hindsight I must say that I couldn't have done any better. Read more
Published on Jan. 18 2003 by D. Golden
5.0 out of 5 stars Are you unorthodox?
I knew virtually nothing about this Church, despite the fact it dates from the time of Jesus Christ. Read more
Published on Jan. 18 2003 by lecudedag
5.0 out of 5 stars First Step To Understanding Orthodoxy
This is an excellent book that was recommended to me by the Orthodox Priest at a church near me to begin my journey through Orhtodoxy. The collection of information is invaluable. Read more
Published on Dec 1 2002 by "mandylee8"
4.0 out of 5 stars important reading, but...
This book is a good primer for the beliefs and history of the Orthodox Church. However, I think that to the layman, this book gets a bit bogged down in religious jargon, making it... Read more
Published on Oct. 30 2002 by Dave Bruehl
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding book, outstanding author
Bishop KALLISTOS Ware is very open minded and an eloquent writer. Studying Orthodoxy, this book is invaluable. Read more
Published on Sept. 3 2002 by Eric Townsend
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