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The Sacred Community
Art, Sacrament, and the People of God

By David Jasper

The Sacred Community
Hardback, 240 pages $29.95
Published: 1st October 2012
ISBN: 9781602585584
Format: 9in x 6in

Subjects: All Literature, All Theology, Religion & Literature

Liturgical, sacramental, and historical, The Sacred Community is a masterful work of theological aesthetics. David Jasper draws upon a rich variety of texts and images from literature, art, and religious tradition to explore the liturgical community gathered around—and most fully constituted by—the moment of the Sanctus in the Eucharistic liturgy. From art and architecture to pilgrimage and politics Jasper places this community in the midst of the contemporary world.

1 Soul and Body React on Each Other
Body and Character in Greek and Roman Literature
2 The Movement of the Body Is a Voice of the Soul
Body and Character in Early Jewish and Christian Literature
3 Your Eye Is the Lamp of Your Body
Luke and the Body-Soul Relationship
4 Ought Not This Daughter of Abraham Be Set Free?
Getting the Story of the Bent Woman Straight
5 Short in Stature, Son of Abraham
The Height of Hospitality in the Story of Zacchaeus
6 His Feet and Ankles Were Made Strong
Signs of Character in the Man Lame from Birth
7 What Is to Prevent Me?
Ambiguity, Acceptance, and the Ethiopian Eunuch
Appendix: Abbreviations from the Progymnasmata

"The rich layers of theological reflection with which [Jasper] weaves together his conversation between the arts and Christian liturgy benefit from not only a host of modern and contemporary artists, writers and poets with religious concerns but also from particularly poignant soundings on these matters from various cultural voices among the likes of philosophers, scientists, and historians."

—Taylor Worley, Union University, Theological Book Review

"Ranging from the writings of and about the Desert Fathers and Mothers, classic texts by medieval mystics, works of classical and modern art, and contemporary Continental philosophy, Jasper reads each as work of literature with theological secrets to tell. The elusive, oracular quality of his writing can be at times difficult, but more often than not even his most meditative and specialist pieces are conversational and inviting."

—Bradley Johnson, Literature and Theology Journal

"In The Sacred Community, Jasper demonstrates how the Christian community plays a significant role in God's plan for human salvation. Both informative and contemplative, Jasper's imagination is truly universal in its breadth, drawing from western and eastern traditions, philosophy, and the arts and sciences. He has a poet's ear for language."

—Thomas Scirghi, Associate Professor of Theology, Fordham University

"Intensely reflective and deeply moving. Ranging widely over the landscape of ancient and modern theology, literature, and history alike, this rich and rewarding work explores the grace of a self-emptying God and the gift of sacred community."

—Roger Lundin author of Believing Again: Doubt and Faith in a Secular Age

"Stylistically, Jasper's ability to make surprising connections enthralls, baffles, and enchants--often simultaneously--making this book a nourishing and exciting springboard for contemplation."

—D. R. Boscaljon, independent scholar, CHOICE Advance

“Jasper’s illustration of this repetition and remembrance of betrayal in the composition and reading of the Gospel of Mark, and how this complex web of multifold betrayals are inseparable from the ‘good news’ itself, is subtle and a masterful wedding of literary theory and theology.

—Bradley A. Johnson, Literature and Theology (28:3)

David Jasper is Professor of Literature and Theology at the University of Glasgow and is Distinguished Overseas Professor of Comparative Literature in the School of Liberal Arts at the Renmin University of China.

Publication Details:

 Hardback , 240 pages
 9in x 6in
8 color images

  REL013000, REL067000
 Baylor University Press

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