Next to the period of Our Lord’s earthly life, the apostolic age that followed was—and is—the richest and most revealing for Christians. It was then that the blueprint for living the Gospels was drawn. Yet, for Catholics of the past two generations, the indispensable fruits of the Patristic Era have been all but memory holed, and the Church and broader society have suffered for it.
As a remedy, Sophia Press has brought back Abbe Constant Fouard’s intimate and ingenious account of the early years of Christianity. Fouard created an authoritative and reverent account based on the Acts of the Apostles, brimming with precious facts from historians of Greece and Rome, penetrating reflections on Saints Matthew and Mark’s Gospels, an extensive outline related by Saint Luke, and a timeless introduction by James Cardinal Gibbons which upholds the authenticity of the Sacred Scriptures.
As Catholic World magazine trumpeted over 100 years ago:
“[Abbe Fouard’s book] shows how much may be obtained by the diligent and truth-seeking student … simple, clear [and] distinct. … Peter and the other Apostles seem to stand before us as living men. With him we follow them as they descend the Mount of Olives to re-enter the Supper-Room, where with Mary they persevered in prayer until the Holy Spirit came. Afterwards we see how he to whom Jesus had said, ‘Feed my lambs, feed my sheep,’ took the position of leader. … Our author does not have to prove that there was a church, because his readers hear the Church speaking.
“We wish that more Church historians knew how to bring out our religion as a living thing. … Men are perishing because the truth is being willfully ignored, Christianity is being rejected because erroneous confessions of faith can be picked to pieces. Conviction is being overthrown to give place to doubt, and the remedy is knowledge of religion as God gave it to man through the channels which He appointed for its extension. … Abbe Fouard’s book will help to make the truth known.”
This work brings to life through fascinating narratives and intimate details:
The life of St. Peter. not only as an apostle, but as a man
The true story of the early Church—free from modern criticism
The ancient Roman culture and religion
The moral condition of the pagan world (Is it better or worse than today?)
Six fascinating aspects of early Christian worship
Three ways that the Holy Spirit taught the Apostles to transmit the Faith