"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Dumitru Staniloae: An Ecumenical Ecclesiology

Earlier this year, in a long review of a fascinating new collection, I drew attention in particular to the work of Radu Bordeianu on Dumitru Staniloae, widely regarded as Romania's pre-eminent theologian of the twentieth century. Now the latter again occupies the former's attention in a welcome new book to be released later this year:

Radu Bordeianu, Dumitru Staniloae: An Ecumenical Ecclesiology (Ecclesiological Investigations) (T&T Clark/Continuum, 2011), 240pp.

  About this book, the publisher says: 
Widely considered the most important Orthodox theologian of the twentieth     century, Dumitru Staniloae (1903-1993) contributed significantly to an ecumenical understanding of these themes. Because of his isolation by the Romanian Communist regime, his work still awaits its merited reception, especially given its potential contribution towards Christian unity.

In Staniloae's understanding the Church is a communion in the image of the Trinity. Because there is a continuum of grace between the Trinity and the Church, the same relationships that exist among trinitarian persons are manifested in creation in general, and the Church in particular. In this way, the Trinity fills the world and the Church, determining their mode of existence. Intratrinitarian relationships are manifested in the relationships between humankind and non-human creation, the Church and the world, local and universal aspects of the Church, clergy and the people, and among various charisms.
We also have the table of contents:

Part One - Ecumenical Ecclesiology
Chapter 1 - Open Sobornicity: Staniloae's Interaction with the West
Chapter 2 - Filled with the Trinity: The Relationship between the Trinity and the Church
Part Two - Filled With the Trinity
Chapter 3 - Adoptive Children of the Father: The Relationship between the Father and the Church Chapter 4 - Body of Christ: The Relationship between the Son and the Church
Chapter 5 - Filled with the Spirit: The Relationship between the Holy Spirit and the Church
Part Three - Communion Ecclesiology
Chapter 6 - Priesthood Toward Creation
Chapter 7 - The Priesthood of the Church: Communion between Clergy and the People
Chapter 8 - Locality and Universality: Eucharistic Ecclesiology

I greatly look forward to reading this, reviewing it for Logos: A Journal of Eastern Christian Studies, and discussing it on here--as well as interviewing the author in the weeks ahead. 

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