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The orations in Sergius Bulgakov's "Churchly Joy" are rooted firmly in the Orthodox tradition of preaching. Here the preacher is, like John the Divine, a seer of mysteries and a mystical visionary. Bulgakov strives to place before us the great mysteries of the Orthodox Church as reflected in her major feasts - celebrations of the Annunciation, the Birth of Christ, the Epiphany, the Transfiguration, the triumphal entry into Jerusalem, and Easter - and a few more general topics. These orations - especially those on the use of liturgy and prayer - function very much as building blocks for Bulgakov's theological doctrines. Indeed, scholars and ministers familiar with his theological works of the Paris period will find here a foundation for understanding his theology more clearly. Yet lay readers will also find much to enrich their own spiritual journey. One of the very few works of Orthodox spirituality and devotional theology available in English, "Churchly Joy" reflects Bulgakov's own transcendent visions for the church.
"There are two worlds for the Christian and two lives in them: one of these lives belongs to this world of sorrow and suffering, while the other is lived in a hidden manner in the Kingdom of God, in the joyful city of heaven. All of the events, both of the Gospel and of the Church, which are celebrated at different times of the Church Year are not only remembered but are also accomplished in us, insofar as our souls touch this heavenly world. These events become for us a higher reality, a source of unceasing celebration, of perfect joy."
- Sergius Bulgakov (from preface)
This distinctive book contains spiritual orations and edifying discourses rooted in the Orthodox tradition. In Churchly Joy Sergius Bulgakov takes readers through the joyous mysteries of the church year as reflected in the Orthodox Church's major feasts, including celebrations of the Annunciation, the Birth of Christ, the Epiphany, the Transfiguration, the Triumphal Entry, Easter, and more. Churchly Joy reflects Bulgakov's transcendent vision for the church and will provide spiritual growth and edification for all Christians.
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