Books: December 2011 Archives

The decision to publish this book in English is exceptional. Anton Baumstark is a pivotal figure in 20th century liturgical studies and widely considered a genius. He set the world on fire for his keen understanding of the sacred Liturgy, both of the East and the West as he offers a lens --a method-- for understanding historical (organic) development in the Tradition of the Church. Baumstark keeps the reader grounded in asking the questions which keep us close to the theologia prima, the sacred Liturgy. The serious student in liturgical studies will pay close attention to On the Historical Development of the Liturgy and Comparative Liturgy.

The Forward is written by Archimandrite Robert F. Taft, SJ, from whom I was first introduced to Anton Baumstark.

From the publisher, Liturgical Press:

Baumstark Cover.png

Anton Baumstark's On the Historical Development of the Liturgy (1923) complements his classic work, Comparative Liturgy. Together they lay out his liturgical methodology. Comparative Liturgy presents his method; On the Historical Development of the Liturgy offers his model.

This book was written for one audience and valued by another. Written to lead adherents of the nascent German liturgical movement to a deeper religious appreciation of Catholic worship, its methodology and scope have won the appreciation of liturgical specialists for nearly a century. In describing the organic growth of the liturgy, its shaping and distortion, Baumstark's reach extends from India to Ireland, Moscow to Axum, Carthage to Xi'an. He discusses the influences of language, literature, doctrine, piety, politics, and culture. While his audacity can be breathtaking and his hypotheses grandiose, his approach is nevertheless stimulating. In this annotated edition, Fritz West provides the first English translation of this work by Anton Baumstark.

Trained in classical and oriental philology, Anton Baumstark (1872-1948) was prodigious as a scholar studying the literature, art, and liturgy of the whole church--Oriental, Eastern, and Western. Comparative liturgy, his method for studying the historical development of the liturgy as an organism, has had a lasting influence, notably on the liturgical study of the Christian East. Fritz West, a liturgical scholar ordained in the United Church of Christ, has written numerous articles on liturgical methodology, the three-year lectionary, and worship in his Reformed tradition. He has published two books, The Comparative Liturgy of Anton Baumstark and Scripture and Memory: The Ecumenical Hermeneutic of the Three-Year Lectionaries.

Infinity -ETO.jpegOver the summer Jesuit Father Edward Oakes published his latest book, Infinity Dwindled to Infancy.

I posted a blog piece about the Infancy here.

Father Oakes' book was reviewed by George Weigel on First Things: read it (actually, read the review and the book).

You can now get the book in paper and on Kindle at Amazon.
Mercies Remembered Mauriello.jpgA recently published book of a parish priest, Mercies Remembered: Reflections and Reminiscences of a Parish Priest, is being presented at Waterbury's Silas Bronson Library (267 Grand Street) December 6 at 6:30pm.

Mercies Remembered is described as a collection of "heartfelt stories of mercy from his 22 years as a priest with the simplicity, humility, humor and profundity of a faith-filled life."

Father Matthew R. Mauriello, STL, is a native of New Jersey and a priest of the Diocese of Bridgeport and is currently the pastor of the Church of Saint Roch (Greenwich, CT). Moreover, he is the president of the North American Congress on Mercy. Father Mauriello was given the honor of being an Honorary Canon of the Cathedral Basilica of Orvieto.

The book is available at the link above on Amazon or from the author, Father Matthew. 


Father Matthew R. Mauriello
Church of Saint Roch
10 St Roch Avenue
Greenwich, CT 06830-6234


About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]



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This page is a archive of entries in the Books category from December 2011.

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