Heaven and Earth in Little Space

by Bp. Andrew Burnham
Canterbury Press
This timely and significant book by Andrew Burnham, Bishop of Ebbsfleet, asks whether the declining appeal of religious worship is connected with the simplification of liturgical practice in recent decades. Has a well-meant policy of making worship more accessible resulted in a loss of the sense of mystery – and has this accelerated the decline?

To answer this question, Bishop Burnham surveys five centuries of change in the Anglican church, as well as the wider Catholic and Orthodox traditions. He suggests what renewal of the liturgy for today’s church might look like and how re-enchantment would work in practice.

His theme is the re-enchantment of the Sacred Liturgy. The opening chapter examines the question of Anglican identity and the evolution of the distinctive post-Reformation rites in the Church of England. He goes on to look in detail at the celebration of the Daily Office and of the Eucharist, and to investigate questions of text, music and ceremonial, as well as the matter of the Kalendar and liturgical year. Particular attention is paid to the relationship between the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms of the Roman Rite, in the light of the motu proprio of Benedict XVI, Summorum Pontificum. A final chapter considers Mary, Mother of the Word Incarnate, as the one who models the grace given through the Liturgy to unite Heaven and Earth.

Bishop Andrew’s significant and absorbing study, informed by his expertise in liturgical theology and history, will be required reading for all who have a concern for the authentic renewal of the worship of God. In particular, in the light of Pope Benedict’s gracious affirmation of Anglican patrimony in the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus, it will be an invaluable resource in furthering the aim of enriching the life of the wider Catholic Church with the particular gifts and insights of the Anglican tradition.

Heaven and Earth in Little Space is published by Canterbury Press with a Foreword by Fr Aidan Nichols OP and an introduction by Fr Jonathan Baker SSC, Principal of Pusey House, Oxford and also a member of the Council of Forward in Faith. Full details of how to order it, and how to take advantage of a generous discount on the recommended price, can be found here.

TO ORDER with a 20% discount please quote code Space 2010.
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