John Ruffle: Pursuing a Vision

EWTN, Global Catholic Network
John is the driving force behind the idea of an on-line library of devotional and theological books that chart the course of Christian history.

While there are many other sites offering free theological book downloads, few offer such a wide variety, and at absolutely no charge.  These volumes are actually stored here on the website, – not just hyper-linked -so there never will be a problem with broken links. Additionally, step by step, John is adding comments to the volumes, so that they become more useful in spiritual formation or just for simple inspiration. Truly, there is something for everybody here, and John is happy to attempt to answer your questions – just email him at  Watch this space. There are literally hundreds more volumes John plans to upload, but as he is a full-time lecturer, he works on the site in his spare time.


John was born and raised within a Christian family in London, England. At 20 years of age, having just completed a year exchange study at Penn State University, John was on a marathon 10,000 mile hitch-hiking tour of USA, Canada and Alaska when, on his first day in California, he had a significant life-transforming encounter with Jesus Christ.

Lighhouse Ranch, Eureka Ca.

This was at the height of the Jesus People revival phenomenon that swept through the counter-culture ‘hippy’ movement during the late 1960s through to the mid-1970s. Following the call of Jesus to his original disciples, John literally “forsook all” to follow Jesus in a common-purse Christian community for the next four years. While at ‘Lighthouse Ranch’ he helped pioneer “Radiance Media Ministry”, producing a syndicated radio teaching show and engineering a number of folk Gospel albums. John also co-produced a radio program catechesis series for the local Roman Catholic parish. For John, all this was more than a Bible school – it was a discipleship and mission training centre, and would prove to be the foundation for John’s subsequent mission and teaching ministry to four continents. Recently, John has undertaken post-graduate studies in Pastoral Theology at St. Mary’s College, Stawberry Hill. He is an ordained deacon within the Order of St. James in the UK.

John has long desired to help poorer nations develop church leadership. In 1995, in memory of his father, D. H. Ruffle, John shipped books to Nigeria in a bid to help create a village Christian formation centre.  Now, in 2012, John has renewed that vision to take it global via the Internet, helping to train national church leadership regardless of denomination,  by granting free and easy access to  important Christian writings. As he continually adds to the pdf files here, John’s passion for active mission is still to share transforming  life-experiences with teenagers and young adults who are destined to change the world through radical discipleship and Christian humanitarian work in poorer nations, following in the paths of our Master, Jesus Christ.


The material on this site is offered on condition that contents are not to be sold or used in whole or part for commercial gain. All queries should be addressed to:  Compilation copyright 2011, 2012, The ‘D. H. Ruffle Memorial Library’. All Rights Reserved. Click HERE for Discaimer and usage policy. This page last updated: 5th January, 2012; 10th January 2012

Welcome to The D. H. Ruffle Memorial Library

The Word of God is the true Bread

This website is just like baking fresh bread (something D. H. Ruffle’s son, John loves doing) .. but in the HEAVENLY realm. Since August 2011,  John Ruffle has been working on a digital library of Bibles, commentaries and outstanding theological works in memory of his father D.H. Ruffle, who was a dedicated catholic lay leader, champion for reconciliation and author -his book “Some Thoughts on the Christian Life” was published after his death. John is currently preparing a 2nd slightly updatged edition of this book, so watch this space!
This site is a memorial to my father, Denis H. Ruffle, (1915-1995). Dad’s passion had been seeking peace and unity in Christ’s body through mentoring, dialogue, personal prayer and encouragement. As a child, I recall him following the progress of the Vatican II Council with keen interest. After retirement, he led the local parish “Friday Night Fellowship”  and as a result, a number of priests and ministers first began the journey of discernment through my father’s prayers and encouragement. Yet, he called himself “an ordinary Christian”. Maybe he was. In which case, I too desire to follow in his footsteps, to be even half an “ordinary” as this extra-ordinary man – my father- surely was. (The photos here are me – but very soon we’ll have archive photos of my dad, D. H . Ruffle here too!)
In many countries, there are very poor facilities for theological training, and virtually no academic books at all. Meanwhile, the West is flooded with many volumes of popular theology, while the works of our fathers lay mainly unread. This should not be! Add to this, the poor or non-existent Internet connections (in some countries the Internet is monitored closely) and we can see that the need for such a collection on-line (and also off-line via USB memory sticks) is great.
Developing the Project


The volumes themselves include (at the current count) 12 Bible versions, and selections that represent a very wide spectrum of Christian orthodoxy, from Eastern, Roman and Protestant perspectives. The volumes include  many pre-Reformation works, since Protestant thought really only covers around 500 years – less than one-quarter of Christian history. Despite the undeniable world-wide growth of pentocostalism in recent years,  Bible colleges from this tradition tend not to engage in pre-Reformation study in any depth. This library, it is hoped, opens up new windows of opportunity for them too, regardless of their location around the world. Also included are more recent volumes that include the Charismatic Renewal,  The Jesus People Movement (JPM), Living in Community, new Church planting and mission apostolates. As of January 2012, over 100 volumes are on the website, with many more being added progressively throughout the year. Also, a links page to other website resources is to be included later.
post updated 14 Jan 2012. JR


All third-party site contents are believed to be in the public domain, or used with the copyright holders’ consent, and are presented here in good faith. Every effort has been made to not violate existing copyright. If we have inadvertently breached any existing copyright, we would be grateful if you could draw this to our attention, in order for us rectify the matter immediately. The majority of images are either especially commissioned for this site, (and copyright the D. H. Ruffle Memorial Library), or from Wiki Commons in the public domain. If you are the copyright holder of an online work, or are able to offer us other works in the public domain for use on this site, please contact us. The material on this site is offered in good faith for non-profit academic and individual use only, and contents are provided on condition they are not sold or used for commercial gain of any description. All queries should be addressed to:
This compilation copyright 2011, 2012, The ‘D. H. Ruffle Memorial Library’. All Rights Reserved. This page last updated: 5th January, 2012; 10th January 2012, 23 April 2014. JR Copyright 2009-2014 D. H. Ruffle Memorial Library. All Rights Reserved.

Over 100 PDF Christian Classic volumes FREE to view or download. No registration required.