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The Hidden Manna: A Theology of the Eucharist Paperback – March 15, 2005


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 420 pages
  • Publisher: Ignatius Press; 2 edition (March 15, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1586170767
  • ISBN-13: 978-1586170769
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.3 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #135,833 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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This book is a tough read.
Annette L. Sullivan
I recommend this book for Roman Catholics and all others who seek to understand why the Eucharist plays such an important part in Catholic thought and theology.
A. Calabrese
O'Conner's comments on each reading are clear and helpful in identifying key points.
Stratiotes Doxha Theon

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Alvin Kimel on February 22, 2003
Format: Paperback
Probably the most comprehensive work in English on the historical development of the theology of the Eucharist now in print. It is scholarly and nonpolemical, though definitely written by one who is strongly committed to a traditional Roman Catholic understanding of transubstantiation and the sacrifice of the Mass. O'Connor notes the diversity of expression in the early Church, yet insists that underneath the various presentations there existed a common faith in the sacramental identity of the consecrated elements and the body and blood of Christ.
O'Connor covers all the majors players from the Patristic period through the medieval period and the Reformation, often providing lengthy citations from their works. He also has a chapter devoted to the teachings of the Popes and the Council of Trent. He concludes with a very length chapter in which he provides his own reflections on the Sacrifice of the Mass and the Real Presence. It is so very clear that O'Connor loves the Mass and the Eucharistic Christ that he encounters in the liturgy.
If O'Connor whets your appetite, then borrow from the library Darwell Stone's massive *History of the Doctrine of the Holy Eucharist*. If only somebody would reprint this invaluable survey of eucharistic doctrine!
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A. Calabrese on November 14, 2005
Format: Paperback
Where to begin? It took me a year to read The Hidden Manna: A Theology of the Eucharist by James T. O'Connor. This wonderful book is a comprehensive study on the Catholic Theology of the Eucharist. It is the kind of book that does not allow you to fly through. On almost every page I high-lighted a gem of information. This is not to say it is a difficult read. On the contrary. This book is just loaded with detailed and wonderful information. It is a history book and a theology primer.

Starting with the New Testament and Early Church Fathers Fr. O'Connor takes the reader on a wonderful journey showing how Catholic Eucharistic thought has developed. He discusses consistancy in teaching, heresies, and how the Doctors of the Church viewed and added to this wonderful Theology.

The book shows the reader how the Eucharist is really the center of Church thought and teaching. What is really wonderful is that this book ends in the 20th century, but it shows how throughout Catholic Church history there has been a consistancy of thought when it comes to the Eucharist. This is not to say that all theologians were in agreement. But even in disagreement the reader is lead to understand how they built upon one and other's theology.

As a 21st Century Catholic I saw that as I focus on this primary of all Sacraments I am in unison with those 1st Century Christians. I recommend this book for Roman Catholics and all others who seek to understand why the Eucharist plays such an important part in Catholic thought and theology. This book is an anchor of Eucharistic study.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Stratiotes Doxha Theon VINE VOICE on May 14, 2008
Format: Paperback
"Jesus said...except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you." (John 6:53). In light of what Jesus taught, it is imperative for all Christians to understand his meaning. We cannot afford the possible consequences of not taking his words seriously. In this important study, Rev. O'Conner takes us on an historical journey to find what Christians have taught about these words from the earliest days of the church. It is a thorough and convincing study that will be difficult for any other study concerning this topic to improve upon. Rev. O'Conner attempts to let the early Christian writers do the talking and interjects only brief commentary and references to scripture to the discussion. In so doing, he leaves little room for escape from the inevitable conclusion.

Reading the early church fathers is rather like drinking from a fire hose; there is always so much we miss and must keep going back to read it again. Despite that feeling in this work, Rev. O'Conner has successfully reduced the flow by carefully focused excerpts without removing context. It is a masterful work of editing. In addition, Rev. O'Conner's comments on each reading are clear and helpful in identifying key points.

In the early 2nd century, as Rev. O'Conner points out, St. Ignatius refers to the great heresy of his day that denied the Eucharist was the body of blood of our Lord. That great heresy was gnosticism. Today's heresies may not use the same name but they continue to perpetuate the same old heresies. There truly is nothing new under the sun.

Challenging and thorough. Very highly recommended as the best work on this important topic for every Christian.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 31, 2002
Format: Paperback
From earliest Church Fathers, through the Council of Trent to present day popes, this book reviews the theologic proofs of the beauty and majesty of the greatest gift that God ever gave to creation- His Real Presence!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By David P. Boland on March 8, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a text book on the complete history

of the theology of the Blessed Sacrament.

Very well written. To be read as informational

not in usual sense as spiritual reading
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Annette L. Sullivan on December 19, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a tough read. It is for people who have an educational background in theology. For those who don't have an understanding of the Catholic faith it may be a bit too difficult to understand.
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