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Eucharist: Theology and Spirituality of the Eucharistic Prayer 1st Edition

4 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0268004989
ISBN-10: 0268004986
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Editorial Reviews

The author traces the origin of the Eucharist back to the Jewish meal prayers, or berakoth, for it is here that he sees its ancestry. This daring but well-documented thesis is proposed here for the first time in English.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: University of Notre Dame Press; 1 edition (July 31, 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0268004986
  • ISBN-13: 978-0268004989
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #622,508 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By First Out on January 8, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I first came across Bouyer's "Eucharist" at Boston College. The excerpts used in class were enough to convince me I had to have this book. Bouyer can flow too much, even in the French original, and this translation has its occasional problems but I'd call this the best work on the Eucharist I've ever read. Gone are the meandering fantasies based on secondary sources and aristotelian metaphysical categories with their host of false problems. Here is the Eucharist at the moment the rich garden of Israel set its perfumed fruit on the altar of the new 'memorial' sacrifice of the God-man. Bouyer writes "There are many theologies on the eucharist. They are practically never the theology of the eucharist . . ." Sound over-the-top? Read it.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By matt on June 29, 2003
Format: Paperback
Like Gregory Dom Dix�s �Shape of the Liturgy,� Bouyer�s �Eucharist� was a seminal text in the 1960�s for anyone seeking to understand the Christian cult in its Jewish context. Both books were groundbreaking and, with minor corrections, still should take a prominent place in anyone�s library of liturgical or sacramental studies.
As the sample pages show, Bouyer spends the first 119 pages exploring the Jewish context of the Eucharist, bringing to light the concepts of �berakoth� (liturgical formulae for blessing a meal) and �tefillah� (other liturgical prayers), which were immediately adopted by the early Jewish Christians.
He then goes through the whole of Christian history, East and West, tracing the liturgical and biblical meaning of the shared meal of the faithful. Very exhaustive and well done! You will not go wrong with this one, and the price is a great deal!
You may also enjoy �The Eucharist Makes the Church� by McPartlan, �Eucharist and Church Fellowship in the First Four Centuries� by Elert, and the works of Joachim Jeremias such as �The Eucharistic Words of Jesus. Enjoy!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By James Huffman on February 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
You know, I bought this book probably 20 years ago. And each time I tried to tackle it, I realized it was far beyond me. Until I tried again 2 months ago, and suddenly the book seemed to come alive, and I was rewarded with 6 weeks of learning from this master's pen.

Make no mistake: this is not an easy book. The difficulty is not in the writing or style, but in the density of the writer's knowledge. But it is rewarding in bringing to life the history of the central rite of the catholic faith, the Eucharist, and showing us how that rite has developed into what we are blessed to have today.

Fr. Bouyer's primary contribution in this book is showing meticulously how our rite grew forth from the rites of the synagogue and temple in the time before the incarnation. Also invaluable is his demonstrating how the church's western rite is more likely an example of the earliest rites of the church, and that the eastern (Byzantine) rites are more likely examples of a later, more refined theology and praxis.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ken Bartsch on June 7, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Solemnity of Corpus Christi seems like a good day to reflect on my reading of Louis Bouyer’s Eucharist. I was an undergrad when it appeared in 1968, that seminal year of life-changing events within the United States and the Catholic Church. Nearly a half-century later, I realize my theology professors in the early seventies were trying to inculcate in me this new way of approaching the Eucharist.
Basically, I got the message. The Mass is not a ceremony for confecting the Blessed Sacrament and reserving it in the tabernacle. Rather it is a sacred meal, what Fr. Regis Duffy, OFM called a “meal-sacrifice-berakah.”
I realized at the time my own spirituality should be built around the liturgy of the Church: the Eucharist, sacraments and the Hours. Others might enjoy devotions like the rosary, the stations, or particular practices, images and shrines; but as a priest I should find my identity, sustenance and life within the official prayers of the Church.
That being said, I see how much I did not learn at the time. I came to this book after taking a hint from Cardinal Ratzinger, that when the apostolic age ended the Church still had much work to do. She would have to shape the leadership structures of the Church; sort and select the canonical books of the Bible; define our doctrines, especially the Incarnation and the Trinity; and develop the Eucharistic Prayers. After reading several books about the Trinity, I went to the Internet to find a book about the Eucharistic Prayers.
Perhaps the Holy Spirit led me to Louis Bouyer and Eucharist, Theology and Spirituality of the Eucharistic Prayer. Not surprisingly, I am out of my depth. I had to look up words like epiclesis, anaphora and anamnesis. I was unfamiliar with oblation, not to mention Tefillah and Abodah.
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