"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, November 18, 2014

Christians and the Great War

I have finished one of the most interesting and satisfying studies of the Great War, viz., Philip Jenkins, The Great and Holy War: How World War I Became a Religious Crusade (Harper Collins, 2014).

Jenkins is one of the leading historical scholars of our time, author of such earlier works as:
Jenkins writes with great care and insight, sympathetic to those he is describing without ever crossing over into outright advocacy or an unduly politicized reading of events.

I hope to post a longer review of this excellent book in the coming days, but for now, let me warmly recommend it to those interested not just in the Great War, but also in the dramatic changes in Christianity in the West from 1914 to the present. Reading the reactions of many pastors and hierarchs, as well as the behavior of soldiers in the trenches, it seems the war took place not just a century ago, but a millennium, and on a different planet, too. 

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