"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).

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Critical Issues in Ecclesiology

In 1963, in the midst of the Second Vatican Council, the Orthodox historian John Meyendorff noted, rightly, that the issue of ecclesiology, and not minor liturgical and administrative adjustments, or even ecumenical statements, will finally solve the problem of Christian unity.” Issues of ecclesiology, then, remain enormously important not only for themselves, but also for the purpose of seeking the unity of Christ's Church. 

Eerdmans has just sent me a copy of a new book in ecclesiology exploring these various ecclesial-ecumenical challenges in the work of one of the most prominent Protestants of our time: Alberto L. García and Susan K. Wood, Critical Issues in Ecclesiology: Essays In Honor of Carl E. Braaten (Eerdmans, 2011), xvi+239pp. 

There is not much in this Festschrift about Eastern Christianity per se, though the first essay, by Gabriel Fackre, recounts an anecdote of Braaten's study at Harvard when Georges Florovsky was there and what the latter taught the former. In addition, the final essay by Leopoldo Sánchez, "More Promise than Ambiguity: Pneumatological Christology as a Model for Ecumenical Engagement" discusses the issue of the filioque, especially in the thought of Yves Congar, and its impact on East-West relations. 

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