• Words for Our Time

  • The Spiritual Words of Matthew the Poor
  • By: Matthew the Poor
  • Narrated by: Kristina Wenger
  • Length: 6 hrs and 57 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (27 ratings)

1 title per month from Audible’s entire catalog of best sellers, and new releases.
Access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Premium Plus plan is $14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
Words for Our Time  By  cover art

Words for Our Time

By: Matthew the Poor
Narrated by: Kristina Wenger
Try for $0.00

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Buy for $19.95

Buy for $19.95

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

The 20th-century elder Abba Matta of Egypt, known in the West as Matthew the Poor, is widely regarded as the greatest Egyptian elder since St. Antony the Great. He produced a huge and varied body of work in Arabic, only a little of which has been translated into English. In addition, a great many of his informal talks to monks and visitors were recorded. This volume is the first appearance in English of a small selection of these talks. Abba Matta had a marvelous ability to communicate the deepest spiritual truths in the simplest and most practical language, making them accessible to laypeople as well as monastics. He speaks to the heart rather than the head, gently exhorting the reader to pursue a deeper life in Christ. To listen to these talks is to sit at the feet of one of the greatest spiritual teachers of our age.

©2012 James Helmy (P)2019 Ancient Faith Publishing

What listeners say about Words for Our Time

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    25
  • 4 Stars
    0
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    0
Performance
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    21
  • 4 Stars
    2
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1
Story
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    22
  • 4 Stars
    1
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Good book but bad narration.

I hope this doesn’t come off the wrong way. Usually for audiobooks, the narrator is supposed to resemble the author.

For example, the books of C.S. Lewis are always narrated by an older British sounding gentlemen.

However, when I listen to this book, I feel like I am listening to a Protestant Youth Group Leader, rather than an ascetic from the desserts of Egypt.

I’ve showed the narration to multiple other people, and it has been received negatively every time.

It’s a shame because Fr. Matthew’s writings are invaluable.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing,

Its is so incredible how deep the wisdom od this book,After Listening this book you will feel blessed and gain a great understading of our Lord Jesus Christ.Anyone who wants to know God deepely must get this book.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love

Was unsure of what to expect from Abba Matta, but I was put at ease with the conversational style of the book while blown away at the wisdom it contained.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Clarity a Christian could only hope for.

Fr. Abba Matta of Egypt, (or Matthew the Poor), was a Coptic Orthodox Monk whose writings are unrivaled in making the complex nuances of the Christian faith simple, wonderful, and beautiful for the reader. I could not more strongly recommend this book for any Christian looking to refine elements of their faith with an author that executes with such pristine clarity, compassion, and dedication to both knowing and living out Christian scripture. As someone that did not know of Matthew the Poor prior to reading, I was surprised to hear both his background and wisdom was from only the past century – as it carries a tone of reverent knowledge that one might more commonly find in books of a much older variety. Divided into sections focusing on “Spirituality,” “Christian Living,” “On Scripture,” and “On Feasts and Fasts,” (as well as an introductory chapter that provides the historical and cultural background of Matthew the Poor), this book is educational, impactful, and at times surprisingly humorous. If you are looking for a Christian book that is both cleverly informative and highly practical, this is undoubtedly the book for you.

Sometimes “high-church” can sound like “high-theory,” which is to say that it can sound like you need a dictionary on standby to understand it. This could not be further from the truth for Abba Matta, where it is easy to feel as if he is speaking directly to you or perhaps delivering a sermon. This “accessible orthodoxy” takes concepts that have been crushed by the weight of centuries of debate and gently reminds the reader of the core truth that reverberates through the scriptures. Oftentimes he speaks through different stories that have unfolded in his life, giving a personal touch without ever projecting himself or straying from scriptural purpose. For those of us in the West that have been off-put by the publishing focus of “Christian self-help” this book might be the solution that both encourages us to not merely know truths, but to also live truths in a fundamentally pragmatic way that connects us to our neighbors.

I listened to this book through Audible, and found the recording to be clear, well-paced, and easy to listen to. Whether you’re musing around the house, out on a drive, or simply sitting down to study the wisdom given to us for our time, each chapter offers insight on a unique concept under a larger section (approximately 3-4 concepts per section for a total of 15 chapters). Each chapter ranges at around 30 minutes each and is rich with a wealth of wisdom and knowledge on its respective subject. The narrator maintains a fair and steady pace that allows for the topic to not become too overwhelming for the reader – perfect for Christians of all walks.

My personal recommendation is that this book be used for the purpose of small group activity, because it seems uniquely written to aid Christians of all kinds to grow in their walk by posing provocative questions (and answers!) regarding core elements of the Christian faith. For example, early in chapter 2 (which focuses on Repentance and Holiness) it stresses the power of prayer that has been delegitimized in certain Christian circles by providing scripture, experience, and narration to support its significance. In fact, Fr. Abba Matta seems to touch upon almost every aspect of Christian social life, so there is certainly a “something for everyone” approach at work. Due to the density of topic material, it naturally makes sense for small groups to dive into the pool of each chapter as a means of discussing the applicatory nature of Matthew the Poor’s wisdom into their everyday lives. For certain chapters, a base-knowledge of Orthodox theology and practice might be helpful, but I think readers are all the more blessed for being exposed to it.

Even though it is a short read, it is an incredible pragmatic aid to any Christian walk – a must read for any modern-day Christian.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

An absorbing, profound, feast of a read

I was mesmerized by the simple yet profound conversational teachings of this renowned 20th century Egyptian monk and spiritual teacher.

Words for Our Time contains a selection of Matthew the Poor’s informal talks arranged in four sections: Spirituality, Christian Living, On Scripture, and On Feasts and Fasts. Its intimate tone made me feel as if I was sitting in a cozy pilgrim’s gathering, leaning forward, eager to absorb the richness and depth of each spoken word. The audiobook format is perfect for this volume. I appreciated the narrator’s moderate pace, which allowed just enough time for the words to penetrate without feeling ponderous.

Many quotes ended up transcribed into my notebook, but I will mention just one here. Abba Matta explains that Jesus’ admonition, “Take up the cross, and follow me” means “to be always ready to abandon the self for the sake of others.” This is a perspective I had never considered – I thought my cross was about my own struggles and burdens. How much harder it is to bear a cross for others, knowing my own self-interested heart and selfish tendencies. This is now a point of prayer and repentance.

I recommend this book to anyone hungry to grow spiritually, to deepen her relationship with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I’m grateful that Ancient Faith Publishing offered me the chance to listen to this audiobook in exchange for an honest review. Because this first volume of The Spiritual Words of Matthew the Poor was so meaningful to me, the second volume, Words for Our Lives, is now on my short list of must reads (or must listens).

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A Quality Devotional Book Worth a Re-listen!

There is a dearth of good audiobook devotional material for Orthodox Christians. This book helps fill the gap in a wonderful way! Abouna Matthew speaks with humility and authority about all types of topics: struggles with the passions, life in the world, theology, the feasts, and fasting. The writings are a collection of talks, transcribed and edited for the modern reader.

I could sense the very real empathy Abouna had with the people. He was able to keep a bridge open between the world and the monastic way of life, so that those who went to him for guidance did not leave without practical help.
I appreciated the selection of writings included in the book as, 'ecumenical', meaning that a Western person of the Orthodox Church could find truth and help in Jesus Christ through Abouna's words. I will give this book as a gift to my Protestant parents knowing they will glean much goodness from it. I will revisit this audiobook again to listen during my commute time, a chapter or so at a stretch, to ponder and reflect.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Literati
  • Literati
  • 05-08-21

Spiritually Rich !

Matthew 'the poor' ...a beautiful, wise, treasury of teaching from an Orthodox monk.

Encouraging, loving and genuinely spiritual - the exact opposite of the so-called 'prosperity gospel'.

I'd definitely recommend it, it's well read too.