In This Issue: Worship, April 2015

The March issue of Worship should at this point be in everyone’s hands. Below you can find abstracts from this issue of Worship as well as the list of books that were reviewed. For more information on Worship, or to subscribe to the journal, please visit their website.


Recovering Ancient Ecclesiology: The Place of the Altar and the Orientation of Prayer in the Early Latin Church by Robin Jensen.

This essay addresses certain current contentions that, from the earliest days, altars were universally located in areas of the church and restricted from the approach (and even view) of the laity and, moreover, that prayer would have been consistently directed to directional East. Instead, this essay argues, on the basis of archeological evidence, that early Christian altars (especially those in the West) often were located well into the center of the church nave and that little documentary evidence supports the directional orientation of prayer, particularly in non-oriented worship spaces. Based on both textual and material evidence, this essay concludes that the laity more likely surrounded the altar during the Eucharistic liturgy and even approached it to receive communion. Such a reconstruction corresponds with Augustine’s argument that the bishop should not regard himself as a mediator between God and the people or physically separate from his congregation during the sacrament.


Justification, Worship, and Poor Relief in the Sixteenth Century: A Historical Concern of Contemporary Interest by David Power

Power’s article looks at the intersection between the Lord’s Supper and the poor in the theology of Martin Luther and John Calvin with an eye to their theologies of justification. The article then looks at the practice of lay confraternities. The ultimate aim of Power’s article is to explore how Catholics and Reformers approached the poor in the sixteenth century, taking into consideration their similarities and differences.


Summorum Pontificum and Fragmentation in the Roman Catholic Church by Timothy Brunk

Brunk’s article “Summorum Pontificum and Fragmentation in the Roman Catholic Church” argues that restoring the liturgy according to the Missal of 1962 short-circuits the liturgical reforms initiated by the Second Vatican Council by operating according to very different understandings of church, assembly, minister and sacrament.  He argues as well that Pope Benedict’s hope for “mutual enrichment” between the Ordinary Form and the Extraordinary Form runs the risk, again, of undermining the integrity of the conciliar reforms.


Ecological Euchology by Robert Daly, SJ

Can a Eucharistic Prayer, still within the tradition of Christian anaphoras, also move beyond the “nice-nature” language of traditional Christian poetry and piety, and speak/sing in the “life-death-life” language expressive of, or at least relevant to the words and concepts of a modern quantum-cosmological, developmental worldview? Daly’s brief article discusses the challenges involved, and tries to craft the draft of such a prayer.


The Amen Corner by Gail Ramshaw is a brief treatment of Catherine of Siena and her Trinitarian Praise.


Book Reviews:

  • Praying and Believing in Early Christianity: The Interplay between Christian Worship and Doctrine. By Maxwell E. Johnson. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, A Michael Glazier Book, 2013. Pages, xvii + 148. Paper, $19.95. ISBN: 978-0-8146-8529-3.
  • A Companion to the Eucharist in the Middle Ages. Edited by Ian Christopher Levy, Gary Macy, and Kristen van Ausdall. Leiden: E. L. Brill, 2012. Pages, vii + 640. Hardcover, $267.00. ISBN: 978-90-04-20141-5
  • Worship in the Network Culture: Liturgical Ritual Studies; Fields and Methods, Concepts and Metaphors. By Marcel Barnard, Johan Cilliers, and Cas Wepener. Liturgia Condenda, 28. Leuven, Paris, Walpole, MA: Peeters, 2014. Pages, 418. Paper, €64. ISBN: 978-90-429-3069-8.
  • Care for the Church and Its Liturgy: A Study of Summorum Pontificum and the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite. By William H. Johnston. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, A Pueblo Book, 2013. Pages, xiv + 326. Paper, $29.95. ISBN: 978-0-8146-6269-4.
  • Ask the Beasts: Darwin and the God of Love. By Elizabeth A. Johnson. London: Bloomsbury, 2014. Pages, xviii + 323. Cloth, £18.99; $32.95. ISBN: 978-1-4729-0373-0.
  • No Peace without Prayer: Encouraging Muslims and Christians to Pray Together; A Benedictine Approach. By Timothy Wright, OSB. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2013. Pages, xi + 338. Paper, $29.95. ISBN: 978-0-8146-3822-4.






  1. 2-year sub ordered, March 2015 issue should arrive by the end of the month.

    I am sure certain PT frequent responders will not be happy with some of the contents of the issue.

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