"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).

Friday, September 10, 2010

Eastern Orthodox and Anglicans

Bryn Geffert, Eastern Orthodox and Anglicans: Diplomacy, Theology, and the Politics of Interwar Ecumenism (University of Notre Dame Press, 2010), vii+501pp.


This is a fascinating piece of scholarship about a relationship, and historical period, that are both fascinating in themselves. The book will be reviewed in 2011 in Logos: A Journal of Eastern Christian Studies by the Anglican scholar Hugh Wybrew of Oxford.

The relationship between Anglicans and Orthodox has often been very close through much of the 20th century, though not always for the best of reasons--sometimes what drew them together was a common suspicion, disdain even, of Rome. Anglican-Orthodox chumminess went so far that it was thought--tendentiously--that some Orthodox had approved of and recognized as valid Anglican ordinations. That relationship is not nearly so close or amicable today, with the first rupture coming when Anglicans began in the 1970s to ordain women; more recent ruptures have come over Anglican departure from historic Christian sexual morality in their embrace of homosexuality. Today Anglican-Orthodox relations are about as strained as Anglican-Catholic relations are. An excellent discussion of those divisions was recently offered by Met. Hilarion (Alfeyev) here:


Peter Galadza and I collaborated on our own similar work on similar topics in the same time-frame in

Fr. Peter tells me my name was supposed to be on the cover alongside his, but the publisher screwed it up. No matter. It was fascinating research into the interwar period and Orthodox-Catholic relations as seen through the lives and letters of two towering figures: Metropolitan Andriy Sheptytsky, and Lev Gillet, "a monk of the Eastern Church."

You can order our book here:: http://www.ustpaul.ca/Sheptytsky/pubs/documents/MASIorderform.pdf

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