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


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The Blessing of Waters

On the feast itself, I noted a forthcoming book about the great blessing of waters on Theophany. Now we have an official notice from the publisher:


Nicholas E. Denysenko, The Blessing of Waters and Epiphany: the Eastern Liturgical Tradition (Ashgate, August 2012), 196pp.

About this book the publisher tells us:
This book examines the historical development of the blessing of waters and its theology in the East, with an emphasis on the Byzantine tradition. Exploring how Eastern Christians have sought these waters as a source of healing, purification, and communion with God, Denysenko unpacks their euchology and ritual context. The history and theology of the blessing of waters on Epiphany is informative for contemporary theologians, historians, pastors and students. Offering important insights into how Christians renew Baptism in receiving the blessed waters, this book also proposes new perspectives for theologizing Christian stewardship of ecology in the modern era based on a patristic liturgical synthesis. Denysenko presents an alternative framework for understanding the activity of the Trinity, enabling readers to encounter a vision of how participants encounter God in and after ritual. 
We are also given the contents:
Contents: Preface; Foreword; Introduction; Early history of the blessing of waters; History of the blessing of waters: stage 1 (8th–10th centuries); History of the blessing of waters: stage 2 (11th–13th centuries); History of the blessing of waters: stage 3 (14th–16th centuries; The origins of the 'Great are You' prayer; Memory and praise of the Lord's theophany; Epiclesis and the gift of the Holy Spirit; Pastoral considerations; Conclusion; Appendices; Bibliography; Index.
Logos: A Journal of Eastern Christian Studies has published Denysenko's work in the past--both original articles and a book review, and it has always been of superlative quality according to our international jury of reviewers. I am greatly looking forward to seeing this book and to having it expertly reviewed in 2013. 

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