There are a ton of books out there for people just starting to learn the faith — some good, some bad, and some downright heretical.
If you’re just getting started exploring the truth and beauty of Catholicism, or if you know someone else who is, here are the best books for learning the Catholic faith (aside from the Bible, of course).
1. “Compendium: Catechism of the Catholic Church”
Not that we’ll stand in your way if you want to read the big Catechism in its entirety, but the Compendium to the Catechism is much easier. It’s divided into the same four parts: the Creed, liturgy and sacraments, morality, and prayer.
But it cuts these down to the essentials, and its helpful index makes it easy to quickly look up a topic and find the answer. Once you read through the Compendium, you’ll have a thorough overview of the entire Catholic faith.
2. “Why We’re Catholic: Our Reasons for Faith, Hope, and Love” by Trent Horn
We’ve had Trent Horn on our podcast before. He’s one of the most effective communicators of the truth of Catholicism.
His book, “Why We’re Catholic“, may be the simplest introduction to Catholicism, making it a great choice if you’re not looking to cover everything like the Catechism does.
It also answers many common objections to the faith, making it a great gift to give someone who just doesn’t get why you’re Catholic.
3. “A Biblical Walk Through The Mass: Understanding What We Say And Do In The Liturgy” by Edward Sri
The Mass is the focal point of Catholic life. If you don’t get the Mass, you don’t really get your faith.
Edward Sri’s “A Biblical Walk Through The Mass” is a real eye-opener into the glory of the Mass. Not only does he make what we say and do each Sunday intelligible, but he also shows how it’s all deeply rooted in Scripture.
Definitely don’t miss this one!
4. “Defend the Faith!” by Robert Haddad
This book grew out of Robert Haddad’s more than thirty years experience of personal encounters with non-Catholics. “Defend the Faith!” answers 165 objections against the Catholic Faith in 50 easily digestible chapters.
A lot of the book responds to common Protestant objections, but the expanded addition also includes responses to atheist and Muslim objections to Catholicism.
If you’re just getting started learning your faith, you don’t want to jump too far ahead. Build a solid foundation in the basics first. These books will provide you with that sturdy base on which to further explore your faith in the future.