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The Spirit of the Liturgy -- Commemorative Edition By: Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, Romano Guardini
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In honor of its fortieth anniversary (1978–2018), Ignatius Press presents a special Commemorative Edition of one of the most important works written by Joseph Ratzinger, The Spirit of the Liturgy.

This edition includes the earlier classic work with the same title by Servant of God Romano Guardini, a book that helped Ratzinger to "rediscover the liturgy in all its beauty, hidden wealth and time-transcending grandeur, to see it as the animating center of the Church, the very center of Christian life".

Considered by Ratzinger devotees as one of his greatest works, this profound and beautifully written treatment of the liturgy will help readers to deepen their understanding of the"great prayer of the Church". The cardinal discusses fundamental misunderstandings of the Second Vatican Council's intentions for liturgical renewal, especially about the priest's orientation of prayer to the Father, the placement of the tabernacle in churches, and the posture of kneeling.

Other important topics are the essence of worship, the Jewish roots of Christian prayer, the relationship of the liturgy to time and space, sacred art and music, and the active participation of the faithful in the Mass.

Item #85223
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    Considered by Ratzinger devotees as his greatest work on the Liturgy, this profound and beautifully written treatment of the great prayer of the Church will help readers rediscover the Liturgy in all its hidden spiritual wealth and transcendent grandeur as the very center of our Christian life. In his own foreward to the book, Cardinal Ratzinger compares this work to a much earlier classic of the same title by Romano Guardini because Ratzinger feels that his insights here are similar with what Guardini achieved in his time regarding a renewed understanding of the Liturgy. My purpose here is to assist this renewal of understanding of the Liturgy. Its basic intentions coincide with what Guardini wanted to achieve. The only difference is that I have had to translate what Guardini did at the end of the First World War, in a totally different historical situation, into the context of our present-day questions, hopes and dangers. Like Guardini, I am not attempting to involve myself with scholarly discussion and research. I am simply offering an aid to the understanding of the faith and to the right way to give the faith its central form of expression in the Liturgy.