Friday, April 17, 2015


Latin for 'third'.

From the post on new Christians we come to the third and final year of the novitiate:

The third year of a new Christian's 'novitiate' has to start the Christian, to the extent they are interested, on the intellectual journey of Christian faith.

In the second year reading the whole Bible should be the main effort, but for variety, I'd include basic church history, reading some classics as well as overviews.

The third year would combine study of a major book: OT or NT, or both (Isaiah and Romans spring to mind, as long as the Calvinist spin is avoided...and read NT Wright at the same time), with some theology and apologetics.

If the person is interested a systematic theology could be useful, or a more specialised work (Theilicke, or similar more contemporary) might be used. Otherwise some of the more popular works such as Mere Christianity could be useful.

Tertiums might also be helped through the major heresies and how they were rebutted...because they keep coming up.

Apologetics would be based on the prominent attacks on Christian belief and its documents and how they can be dealt with, and themselves criticised.

But that's just the reading. A couple of retreats for a more devotional and prayerful approach to faith would be good too, as would further exploration of the devotional life. This could include exposure to the Christian musical traditions, for example.

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