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First Fruits of Prayer: A Forty-Day Journey Through the Canon of St. Andrew [Paperback]

Our Price $ 12.71  
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Item Number 93072  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   195
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 5.25" Height: 8"
Weight:   0.58 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Dec 1, 2008
Publisher   Paraclete Press (MA)
ISBN  155725611X  
EAN  9781557256119  

Availability  8 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 25, 2016 06:18.
Usually ships within one to two business days from Momence, IL.
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Item Description...
Join Frederica Mathewes-Green on a guided retreat through an ancient Orthodox text. Regardless of your denominational background, First Fruits of Prayer will bring to life the prayer experience of first millennium Christianity through immersion in this poetic hymn, an extraordinarily beautiful work that is still chanted by Christians around the world each Lent. It weaves together Old and New Testament Scriptures with prayers of hope and repentance and offers ancient ways of seeing Christ that still feel new today.

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More About Frederica Mathewes-Green

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Fredrica Mathewes-Green is a wide-ranging author whose work has appeared in the "Washington Post, Christianity Today," the "Los Angeles TImes, First Things, Books & Culture, Sojourners," and the "Wall Street Journal." She is the author of eight books, including "The Illumined Heart, The Open Door, and The Lost Gospel of Mary," and is the Khouria (spiritual mother) of Holy Cross Orthodox Church nea Baltimore. Visit her at

Frederica Mathewes-Green currently resides in Baltimore, in the state of Maryland.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Encouraging reading!  Feb 14, 2007
I have read the Canon of St. Andrew several times in the past. This book is helpful in causing a deeper dig within my own heart, to grasp the faith of the Ancient Christians! I expect that this book will begin to look worn, as the years go by, as well as a few other favorites on my bookshelf!
First Fruits of Prayer  Mar 17, 2006
This is a wonderful book to go through during lent, or for that matter, at any time of the year. There are 40 excerpts from the Canon of St. Andrew. Frederica Mathewes-Green links these selections with the scripture from the Bible that inspired them and includes a brief commentary on each verse.

This book makes one look at their own shortcomings and sins, but also shines the light of a loving and merciful God as the help and healer of our human spiritual ailments. I really am enjoying reading and being challenged by this book.
Great Lenten Resource  Feb 18, 2006
Eastern Christian thought, prayer and spirituality is not well enough known in "the West." The Canon of St. Andrew of Crete is a beautiful prayer, and Ms. Mathewes-Green does an excellent job in communicating these values in a way that those of us with a "Western" mindset can understand, appreciate, and find meaning in our lives. Great reading during the Lenten season.
Excellent Journey Through Lent  Jan 26, 2006
I don't intend so much to review this book (which I found excellent), as to respond to a couple of questions posed by the reviewer below, John Zxerce.

Mr. Zxerce seems to be looking at the theology of the book through a Protestant/Reformed lens. No doubt, if this is the case some of what he sees will seem strange, even foreign, to his understanding of the Faith. An example of this is his putting forth of several implicit or explicit "either/or's." But from an Orthodox perspective these are seen more as "both/and's." Salvation is found through "a Savior to be embraced" and "an example to be followed." One aspect of soteriology doesn't preclude or negate the other. Of course, one must "embrace" the Saviour before one can follow Him, but it the Orthodox mind the two are not radically separate. Salvation is a gift of God's grace, without a doubt. But that doesn't eliminate the need to live a Christ-like life. To put it in Western terms, righteousness is both "imputed" and "infused." It's not one or the other.

The ransom/redemption texts of Scripture that Mr. Zxerce quotes will fit just as well into the Orthodox paradigm of salvation as rescue, as they do into the Western understanding of the "substitutionary atonement," which of course the Orthodox believe, albeit not in the same way. Sin and death are definitely real enemies--I'm not sure how one could come away with any other idea after reading the Canon of St. Andrew. The difference between Orthodoxy and Protestant Christianity in this regard is the manner in which the two sides see those enemies being defeated.

It is important to remember that the Western "substitutionary atonement" model of the death of Christ isn't all there is. For centuries before that model became the dominant one in the Western Church, the Eastern Fathers (and many Western ones as well) held to the view that the Orthodox hold today. For further reading on this I'd recommend Mathewes-Green's earlier book THE ILLUMINED HEART and Matthew Gallatin's THIRSTING FOR GOD. These two books also contain references that point the way to deeper, more scholarly works on the subject.

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