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Other titles in the Blackwell Brief Histories of Religion series:
Brief History of Saints (Blackwell Brief Histories of Religion)by Lawrence Cunningham
Synopses & Reviews
A Brief History of Saints follows the rise of the cult of saints in Christianity from its origin in the age of the martyrs down to the present day. Referring to both well-known saints such as Joan of Arc and lesser-known figures like the “holy fools” in the Orthodox tradition, the book ranges over subjects as diverse as the history of canonization processes, the Reformation critique of the cult of saints, and the role of saints in other religious traditions.
While special attention is paid to the Western tradition, Eastern Christianity is also considered. The final chapters outline how the saints may serve as a theological resource, as well as discussing the relevance of sainthood in postmodern culture. The volume contains additional material on patron saints and the iconography of saints in art.
A Brief History of Saints follows the rise of the cult of saints in Christianity from its origin in the age of the martyrs down to the present day.
A Brief History of Saintsfollows the rise of the cult of saints in Christianity from its origin in the age of the martyrs down to the present day.
About the Author
Lawrence S. Cunningham is John O’Brien Professor of Theology at Notre Dame University. He is the author or editor of many books, including The Sacred Quest: An Invitation to the Study of Religion (2001), Christian Spirituality (1996), Ecumenism (1990), and The Catholic Faith: An Introduction (1987). His previous works on sainthood include biographies of Thomas Merton and Saint Francis of Assisi. He has won three Catholic Press Association awards for his religious writing and numerous teaching awards.
Table of Contents
List of illustrations.
1. The Saint: Beginnings.
2. The Bureaucratization of Sanctity.
Liturgical Memory of the Saints.
The Saintly Legend.
A Test Case: Francis of Assisi.
The Christian East.
The Many Meanings of the Saints.
Venerating Saints: A Theological Clarification.
3. Reformations Catholic and Protestant.
The Age of the Reformers.
The Catholic Reformation.
The New Martyrs.
The Papal Curia and Canonization.
The Saints and Scholarship.
4. Towards the Modern World.
New Forms of Religious Life.
Doctors of the Church.
The Tractarians and the Saints.
5. The Twentieth Century.
Schools of Spirituality.
A New Saintliness.
The New Martyrs.
John Paul II: Saints and Evangelization.
An Anglican and Lutheran Calendar.
6. The Saints, World Religions, and the future.
Saints as a Theological Resource.
Saints and the Continuity of Religious Tradition.
Appendix I: Patronal Saints.
Appendix II: Iconography of the Saints.
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