Here are some classics, both old and new, for your Lenten Journey.
You may also wish to go to the Links section below, and browse the outstanding Orthodox Online Stores for these and other edifying titles.
NEW FOR 2013 - The Beginnings of a Life of Prayer -
The beginnings of prayer arise from the longing of the heart to know
God, to rest in Him Who showed His love upon the precious Cross, to
abide in the fullness of communion with Him. In the present book—a
primer on prayer—Archimandrite Irenei first prepares the ground by
helping us to count the cost (Luke 14:28) of our lives as Christians, to
take stock of the spiritual struggle we must undertake if we are to
ascend toward God in prayer. Then, based on a sober appraisal of our
lowly condition and of the worldly and demonic influences that assail
us, he helps us to adorn our inward beings as temples of prayer.
The Art of Prayer
- compiled by Igumen Chariton of Valaam Monastery, and featuring the writings of St Theophan the Recluse. A classic collection of writings by a recent saint of the Orthodox Church. Highly Recommended.
The Lenten Triodion
- Bp. Kallistos Ware and Mother Mary - SVS Press - The edifying introduction by Bishop Kallistos Ware is worth the price of admission, but the ability to keep pace with the Great Fast through selective reading and praying of the weekly canons, stichera and special hymns is a transforming experience.
The Passion of Christ
- Veselin Kesich - SVS Press - This brief book is a masterpiece, and a powerful addition to one's Lenten library.
The Lenten Spring
- Fr. Thomas Hopko - SVS Press - A very readable and enjoyable collection of reflections, taking one through the entire course of the Fast. Can be used as a daily Lenten Devotional.
- Fr. Alexander Schmemann - SVS Press - The classic modern work on Great Lent, which goes through the cycle of services, and the course of the Fast, in a heartfelt and expansive manner, enabling the reader to "make Lent real" in their own life and home.
The Way of the Ascetics
- Tito Colliander - SVS Press - This slim volume, a modern classic, distills in easy to read chapters the wisdom of the desert fathers on prayer, warring against the passions, cutting off one's own will, fasting, in short, the ascetical and spiritual discipline of the Church throughout every age. A must for every Orthodox, and a challenging, firm and unerring guide through the journey of Great Lent. Available through Hermitage of the Holy Cross.
The Royal Way of the Cross
- St John of Tobolsk - Monastery Press - A Russian Classic! First published in 1709 in a mix of Slavonic and Ukrainian. A Russian translation was published by Fr. Clement Sederholm, disciple of Elder Ambrose of Optina (and biographer of many of the Optina elders) in the late 19th century. Now available in English! MORE TITLES from MONASTERY PRESS
The Ladder of Divine Ascent
- St John Climacus - Holy Transfiguration Monastery - St. John Climacus exposes the sinful passions in clear detail, showing us also the way to overcome them. Useful both for monks and laymen, the Ladder has stood for centuries as an essential handbook for the Christian struggler.
- St Inganius Brianchaninov - Holy Cross Hermitage - Direct and practical spiritual and life counsels from a modern saint (19th century) who confronted many of the same modernist, "enlightened" pressures which dog us to this day. Originally written for monastics, this is an intense call to a more ascetical life. A spiritual classic.
How To Live A Holy Life
- Met. Gregory Postnikov - Holy Cross Hermitage - Similar to St. Tikhon of Zadonsk, Metropolitan Gregory was a modern (19th century) writer, who sketches for the reader how to conduct oneself through the course of a single day. "You should pass every subsequent day just as you did the first one." Small, pocket size, only 150 pages, and ideal for a pocket devotional.
The Book of Akathists
- Holy Trinity Monastery - Holy Cross Hermitage - A beautiful edition by Holy Trinity Monastery, Jordanville NY, featuring Akathist hymns to our Savior, the Mother of God, and numerous saints.
Living Without Hypocrisy
- Sayings of the Optina Elders - Holy Cross Hermitage, hardbound, convenient size. These brief and powerful instructions on the spiritual life are comparable to the sayings of the Desert Fathers, whose spirit and way of life the Optina Elders truly shared. The book provides an excellent source of spiritual nourishment for Orthodox Christians of all walks of life and all levels of spiritual experience.
Salt of the Earth
- by St Paul Florensky - St Herman of Alaska Press - A very warm, reverent and intimate look into the life, home, teachings and gifts of one of the last Russian elders prior to the Bolshevik revolution, written by the brilliant Orthodox priest, scholar, scientist, Pavel Florensky, who became a confessor and martyr for the Faith under the communists. A very edifying and uplifting read, with an introduction on the life of St Paul Florensky, which is very inspiring in its own right. Highly recommended.
The Optina Elders Series
- St Herman of Alaska Press - The classic series on these outstanding elders of Holy Russia.
Athonite Fathers and Athonite Matters
- Elder Paisios of Mt Athos - St Herman of Alaska Press - Like a modern Evergetinos or Gerontikon of stories of godly, wise and foolish and careless monks of the Holy Mountain. For Orthodox Christians of every mode of life - not just for monastics! Balances delightful, uplifting, edifying and instructive lessons, with tales that warn against pride, despair and spiritual delusion. You will read this again and again. MORE TITLES FROM ST HERMAN OF ALASKA PRESS
St Isaac of Syria Skete
- An outstanding selection of Orthodox books by numerous publishers, featuring many categories:
- Lives of Holy People
- Bibles and Church Services
- Orthodox Life
- Children and Family Life
- Children's Books
- Contemporary Issues
- Patristic Anthologies
- Theology and Doctrine