Allendale, N.J. Alleluia Press, (1976). 0911726063. 8vo. 9-5/16" x 6-1/2". Red cloth covered boards stamped in gold. 415 pp. Book is tight, interior clean and unmarked. Edges of text block show some splash stains. Overall good plus to very good. / Edges of dust jacket a little ruffled with a few short closed tears. Item #968
This book is divided into three parts. Part I explores the genesis and meaning of the mysteries in both pagan and Christian contexts, the problems solved by the early Fathers, and thus offers new insights into their writings. Part II traces the origin of the sacraments, their meaning and their ritual in the early Church. Based on documentary sources of the first five centuries, this survey distinguishes their essential rites from auxiliary ceremonial introduced to make their meaning more explicit to the early Christians. Part III deals briefly with the present sacramental theory of the Church, both Eastern and Western. It is ecumenical, stressing that most of the discrepancies between the Orthodox and Roman Catholics are merely a matter of focusing on differing facets of the same truths. Different mentalities rather than different theologies separate the two great Christian bodies. Understanding one another's viewpoint means coming closer to each other in thought and heart: it means drawing nearer to that final embrace of oneness in Christ. Far from sermonizing or rhapsodizing about the mysteries he details, Father Kucharek's matter-of-fact scholarship uncovers for the average reader depths of liturgical theological and spiritual insights seldom contained in a dozen volumes. Its impact is equally great!