Magazine article Pastoral Music

Church, World, and Kingdom

Magazine article Pastoral Music

Church, World, and Kingdom

Article excerpt

Church, World, and Kingdom The Eucharistic Foundation of Alexander Schmemann's Pastoral Theology. William C. Mills. Hillenbrand Boote/Liturgy Training Publications. ISBN 978-1-59525-038-4. 124 pages, paperback. $18.00.

One of the primary needs facing those who preside at liturgy in the Church today is the restoration of the notion that the Scriptures, doctrine, faith, teachings, practices, and prayers of the Church are both expressed and fully realized in the Eucharistic liturgy. This was a fundamental goal of the work of Father Alexander Schmemann, who was a world-renowned Eastern Orthodox priest, professor, and theologian.

In Church, World, and Kingdom, Father William C. Mills seeks to survey the pastoral theology of Father Schmemann for readers both Eastern and Western. Mills says in the preface to his book:

Implicit in [Schmemann's] writings one can find rich commentary regarding the pastoral nature of the liturgy, what the Roman Catholic theologian Josef Jungmann and others have called pastoral liturgy. Liturgy is deeply pastoral in that the Church's worship invites the faithful around both Word and table in order to be in communion with one another and with the living God. The faithful are then sent back into the world to bring the peace, love, and joy of the Kingdom to the whole world . . . . Schmemann did not envision pastoral theology as a separate subject for study . . . . [P]astoral theology needs to be understood as a unique and important area of theology and that it is the Eucharist which is the source for reflecting on pastoral theology (viii).

Father Mills has presented his commentary on Schmemann's work in a context both theological and ecumenical, which presents for the non-Eastern reader an excellent introduction not only to Schmemann but also to the Eastern theological tradition as a whole. …

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