"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).

Monday, February 21, 2011

Encyclopedic Riches

I noted earlier in the month the advent of The Encyclopedia of Eastern Orthodox Christianity under John McGuckin's superb editorship.

I have been dipping into it each day, and enjoying many of its riches. I will have a long review of it later, but for now let us consider a few entries at random:

        • Marcus Plested wrote the entry "Filioque." It is a masterpiece of distillation of this complex issue. He covers the relevant history in brief outline, and handles both Eastern and Western views with an irenic aplomb. The entry does not, of course, cover the issue with the depth that A. Edward Siencienski does in his recent book, but it is a good place to begin.
  • Siecienski is himself the author of  the entry "Eastern Catholic Churches" and this is also a very fine effort. He treats this controversial topic with a wonderfully dispassionate tone. He does not shy away from noting Orthodox involvement in the bogus "reunion synods," including that of Lviv in 1946 in which the Ukrainian Greco-Catholic Church was forcibly abolished and "reunited" to the Russian Orthodox Church under Stalin's orders. 

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