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Economia and Eschatology: Liturgical Mystagogy in the Byzantine Prothesis Rite

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The Eucharistic Liturgy does not simply expose us to the Mystery of God’s love and salvation in Jesus Christ, nor is its primary aim to secure for us an intellectual understanding of divine concepts and higher theories, as enticing as these may be. By necessity, the Liturgy raises us to a sublime participation in the Christ event in a profoundly holistic manner that fulfills our every expectation and aspiration. In other words, the Liturgy “personalizes” the Christ event for us by suspending time and space as we know it and by bringing heaven to earth, thus allowing us to engage in the singular event of salvation on both a cosmic and personal level. This face-to-face encounter with the Lord, this experience of mystery, makes personal transformation possible because at its highest level conversion cannot be a mere intellectual exercise. Rather, conversion is an ongoing event, a continuous experience of fellowship with God. Succinctly put, it is life itself, and the Liturgy of the Church, by its intrinsically experiential character, facilitates this transformation of man in God. As Dermot Lane put it so well, “God comes to man in experience. We receive God in experience. We do not project, create or posit God in experience. Rather we find God, already there ahead of us, in human experience.”

(Stelyios S. Muksuris, Ph.D. From the Preface)

Preface  pg. ix 
Introduction: Byzantine Liturgical Mystagogy   pg. xv 
Chapter One: A New Translation of the Prothesis Rite   pg. 1 
The Life and Liturgical Works of St. Nicholas Cabasilas and St. Symeon of Thessalonike: A Critical Survey  pg. 19 
Chapter Three: A Historical Overview of the Preparation of the Eucharistic Gifts   pg. 33 
A Theology of Economia: Sacrifice in Eastern Liturgy   pg. 53 
Eschatology and Its Relation to Eastern Liturgy   pg. 79 
Chapter Six: The Mystical Prothesis I: Bloodless Immolation of the Lamb   pg. 107 

Chapter Seven: The Mystical Prothesis II: Two Kingdoms of Saints United 

 pg. 133 
: The Mystical Prothesis III: The Final Preparation in the Veiling and Prayer  pg. 165 
Chapter Nine: The Prothesis Rite as Image of the Anaphora   pg. 195 
Conclusion: Liturgical Mystagogy as the Experience of Divine Reality   pg. 215 
Appendix: The Relation of the Prothesis Rite to the Eucharistic Liturgy: An Architectural and Iconographic Approach   pg. 227 
Bibliography  pg. 236 
About the Author  pg. 253