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The Experience of God: Orthodox Dogmatic Theology, Volume 4: The Church: Communion in the Holy Spirit

Dumitru Staniloae
Translated and Edited by Ioan Ionita
Foreword by Peter C. Bouteneff

Volume 4 of The Experience of God: Orthodox Dogmatic Theology

“With this fourth installment in Fr. Dumitru Staniloae’s Dogmatic Theology, we arrive at his consideration of the Church. One would be tempted to call this his ‘ecclesiology’ but to do so would be to accede to a categorization that the Orthodox Church has employed with unease, or at least with qualification. Fr. Georges Florovsky and other twentieth-century Orthodox writers have observed that the early Christian centuries did not produce an authoritative teaching on the Church, that they did not see it as the subject of theological reflection. If the Orthodox Church has an ‘ecclesiology,’ it is one that modern writers have had to synthesize on the basis of (a) the four marks, or ‘attributes,’ of the Church in the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed (yielding reflections on the Church’s unity, holiness, catholicity, and apostolicity); (b) the Fathers’ reactions to and reflections on schisms and reintegration (notably, e.g., reactions to the Donatist schism and the efforts of St. Basil the Great in reintegrating the homoiousians); and (c) the lived experience of the Church as a liturgical—specifically a baptismal and a Eucharistic—body.”


         Peter C.Bouteneff
1. The Descent of the Holy Spirit and the Beginning of the Church
2. The Theandric Constitution of the Church
   A. The Church as the Mystical Body of Christ, and Christ as Her Head
   B. The Foundation of the Church: God’s Incarnate Son
   C. The Church Imprinted with Christ’s Sacrifice
   D. The Church Pneumatized by the Spirit of the Risen Christ
3. Christ’s Threefold Ministry and the Priesthood of the Church
   A. Christ’s Priesthood in the Church
   B. Christ’s Priesthood in the Church through the Universal Priesthood
   C. Christ’s Priesthood in the Church through the Serving Priesthood
   D. The Three Stages of the Priesthood
   E. The Succession of Grace: Christ’s Priestly Work Continued through Other Ministers
   F. The Serving Priesthood’s Role in Maintaining the Unity of the Church
   G. A Detailed Explanation of the Bishop’s and Priest’s Relationship with Christ
   H. The Synodality of the Bishops, and How the Church’s Sobornicity Depends upon It
   I. The Serving Priesthood and the Visible Character of the Church
4. Attributes of the Church as the Body of Christ
   A. The Unity of the Church
   B. The Holiness of the Church
   C. The Integral Sobornicity of the Church
   D. The Apostolicity of the Church
5. The Working of the Holy Spirit: Divine Grace and Human Freedom
   A. The Working of the Holy Spirit, or Divine Grace
   B. The Human Person’s Free Cooperation with Grace
   C. Gifts as Workings of the Spirit
6. The Human Person’s Salvation within the Body of Christ
   A. Righteousness, Justification, Growth, and Ascent in the Spirit
   B. The Human Person’s Rebirth and the Indwelling of Christ
   C. The Gift of Salvation Appropriated through Faith and Good Works

Item Number: BKHCB054
Publication Data: Brookline, MA: Holy Cross Orthodox Press, 2012
Format: softcover
Number of Pages: xii + 175
Dimensions (l × w × h): 22.9 cm × 15.2 cm × 1.2 cm
ISBN: 978‒1‒935317‒26‒5

$26.95 (USD)


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