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Mary and the Fathers of the Church: The Blessed Virgin Mary in Patristic Thought [Paperback]

By Luigi Gambero & Thomas Buffer (Translator)
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Item Specifications...

Pages   400
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.96" Width: 6.4" Height: 1.03"
Weight:   1.4 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Sep 25, 2006
Publisher   Ignatius Press
ISBN  0898706866  
EAN  9780898706864  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Father Luigi Gambero, internationally-known expert on early Christianity, presents a comprehensive survey of the development of Marian doctrine and devotion during the first eight centuries. Focusing on the lives and works of over thirty of the most famous Church Fathers and early Christian writers, Fr. Gambero has produced a clear and readable summary of the richness of the patristic age's theological and devotional approach to the Mother of God. The book contains numerous citations from the works of those men who developed the defining Christological and Mariological positions that have constituted the foundational doctrinal teaching of the Church. Each chapter concludes with an extended reading from the works of the patristic authors. A number of these texts have never before been published in English. The thought of the Fathers and early Christian writers continues to fascinate readers today. Their theological acuity and spiritual depth led them faithfully into the mysteries of Sacred Scripture. Their vast experience made them reliable and trustworthy witnesses to the faith of the people of God.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Beautiful reflection on Mary  Mar 14, 2008
Luigi Gambero has written an excellent review on the reflections of the Fathers of the Church concerning our Blessed Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary. Mary was a lay person, just as all of us. She did what we are all called to do, namely to bring Christ into the world. She is our model of behavior.

The special beauty of this book is that it is highly readable! Thomas Buffer has provided a fluid translation of Father Gambero's original work in Italian. Unlike some translations, one must struggle to make any sense out of the material. But this one flows, and provides an enjoyable reading on the thoughts of the Church Fathers on Our Lady.
Doctrines of Christ and Mary threads of the same tapestry  Jan 10, 2008
The doctrines of Mary are, in effect, doctrines of Christ. And for that reason, one cannot be challenged without weakening the other. For instance, when Pelagius offered Mary as an example of the strength of the human will to obey God, St. Augustine responded by offering that Mary was given a special grace that kept her from sin, thus hinting at the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception of Mary. When the Arians and Manichees attacked the dual nature of Christ as the God-Man, the early fathers gathered at Ephesus and declared Mary with the title Theotokos (Mother of God) as a reminder that Jesus was fully God when he became fully man in the Virgin's womb. However, it is clear that the term Theotokos was already in popular use for many centuries prior to the council of Ephesus declaring it as a test of orthodoxy.

With simple logic the early church could deduce that in order for Jesus to be born, Mary said `yes' to the Holy Spirit's work making her an indispensable part of the redemption story. And, when confronted with the question of how a sinless Christ could be born without the tarnish of original sin, the Immaculate Conception of Mary was further inferred.

Following that reason and Paul's reasoning of Jesus as the second Adam, the early fathers began to speak of Mary as the second Eve. Just as the first Eve led the first Adam to sin, so the second Eve led the second Adam to obedience. Mary redeemed the role of women and canceled the disobedience of Eve. Just as Eve was the mother of all the dead in sin, so Mary has become the mother of the living in Christ. The book of revelation follows this reasoning well in verses 11:19-12:17, drawing the parallel of Mary to the Ark as the bearer of the Word of God and identifying all Christians as children of Mary. Doctrines of Mary developed along this line of reasoning to the point that she is at last seen as the personification of the Church in John's Revelation.

It should be clear that threads of Marian doctrine unravels the tapestry of Christology they are woven with. It should be no wonder then that the doctrines closely related to Christ and ecclesiology are the doctrines most often suffering under the private interpretations of Protestant and Christian-influenced cults. In this great work, we can see that development and understand the ancient and logical connections we might not otherwise grasp. It reminds us of our great heritage and the communion of a family united by their mother. A solid bit of ancient Christian scholarship in a most readable form. A must have for any students of Marian doctrines and of the early church fathers through the 9th century.
History and Understanding Marian Belief  Jun 12, 2007
This is a great book for Catholics and non-Catholic who want to understand the churches views on the Holy Mother. This book points out what the earliest believers in Christ believed about Mary, the mother of Jesus and why. Keep in mind, most of the believers and writers in this book lived more than 1500 years ago demonstrating that reverance to the Holy Mother is not some recent invention. I highly reccomend this book.
Again and again  Mar 8, 2007
After reading your so called bible christians. I was porvoked to order a copy of this book. As always the salm - dunk of the protestants is there in full force. It must be understood that Mary is not the beginning or end to eveything Roman Catholic. Yes we honor her as mother and Queen. And yes we love her greatly. But Jesus is always the center. And as Mary said herself"Do whatever he tells you" . As always been the teaching of the church. I understand that at times some people have made her a image of worship. But any Roman Catholic worth there salt will know that Jesus is not please when his mother is place over him. Like all those who honor the communion of saints . We believe that Mary is the greatest of them all. Her power of prayer is known all over the world. Catholic and non-catholic alike. What we must understand and i do mean we is that Mary should never be a object of worship.But rather an object of love. Love her not it is up to you. But from this Roman Catholic Converts eyes i read nothing new.It the same old stuff just a new cover. And i think a waste of money. Most of what is in this book could be had at any protestant church in pamlet form for free. Bashing Cathilic traditions is not doing anyone any good. In fact your doing what Jesus said you shouldnt do. hate others.......................
Church history at its best...  Oct 6, 2005
I thoroughly enjoyed this book: Mary and the Fathers of the Church: The Blessed Virgin Mary in Patristic Thought By Luigi Gambero. It gives great insight into the process of theological development from Paul on through the Middle Ages. The chapters are arranged thoughtfully for the scholar and lay person alike, with bite size bits of information and actual exerts from the individual Church Fathers from each era. It has amazed me to see the fragility of doctrine during that period of Church history, being exposed and tainted at times with heresies. It is miraculous that Christian faith has not only been preserved but has flourished. I highly recommend this book to any armchair theologian and lover of Christ.

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