Rev. Lawrence B. Porter. Ph.D. expands on the new works gracing the shelves of the Seminary Library. Here, he expands on some of the books and their backgrounds.
"It is late Monday morning, October 8, and there are no classes here at Seton Hall University for it is Columbus Day and part of our fall break, but the seminary library is open for industrious students and faculty who want to use part of their break for study and research. I just now spent some time in the Seminary library’s staff room surveying the sixty-three books which were recently catalogued for our collection and will soon appear on the “New Book” shelf in the seminary library’s DeVoy Reading Room. They include a good distribution of titles representing each of the academic disciplines taught here at the seminary: scripture, patristics, church history, systematic theology, pastoral theology, moral theology and philosophy. Here I want to call your attention to a work or two in each of these areas which I found particularly interesting.
Among the biblical studies which we received there are several serious monographs, that is, intensive studies of precise topics, works such as Tryggve Mettinger’s The Eden Narrative: A Study of Genesis 2-3, Shalom Paul’s Isaiah 40-66: Translation and Commentary, and Ben Witherington’s Paul’s Letter to the Philippians. However, the most enjoyable biblical work for me was John Pilch and Bruce Malina’s Handbook of Biblical Social Values which will eventually be shelved in our reference section for it is a dictionary with entries on such social issues as “jealousy” and “justice,” “love” and “loyalty,” “parenting” and “patience.” The latter two entries should probably be read together. But there is much to be learned from reading any of the entries in this handbook. For example, the entry on “love” makes it clear that in the Bible love is not always attraction to another person, for it notes: sometimes “one can be attracted to food (Gen 27:4).” And the entry on “nudity” contains some remarks about “the dress of priests” in the Jerusalem temple which seem to imply that undershorts were invented precisely to prevent unintended nudity during the services there.
Our new acquisitions in the area of patrology include two new publications from the Catholic University of America’s “Fathers of the Church” series: the first ever English translation of Andrew of Caesarea’s Commentary on the Apocalypse and volume 3 of Cyril of Alexandria’s Commentary on the Twelve Prophets.
In the area of medieval theology, we have acquired from Catholic University of America’s “Fathers of the Church Series: the Medieval Continuation,” Oxford theologian and later Bishop of Lincoln, Robert Grosseteste’s On the Cessation of the Laws and from the series called Cistercian Studies, Cistercian abbot John of Ford’s Sermons on the Song of Songs.
In the area of systematic theology we have received John Howard Yoder’s Preface to Theology: Christology and Theological Method, Veli-Matti Kärkkäinen’s Pneumatology: The Holy Spirit in Ecumenical, International and Contextual Persepctive, and Stanley Porter and Jason Robinson’s Hermeneutics: An Introduction to Interpretive Theory.
Students of Christian ethics and moral theology will want to take a look at Janet Smith’s anthology of 21 essays by various authors, a work entitled Why Humanae Vitae was Right.
If your interest is ecclesiology, look for Paul McPartlan’s Sacrament of Salvation: An Introduction to Eucharistic Ecclesiology.
In the area of pastoral theology there is Patrick Morley’s Pastoring Men: What Works, What Doesn’t and Why It Matters Now More than Ever.
As for spirituality, take a look at Joseph Langford’s Mother Teresa’s Secret Fire. There is also Nicholas Healy and D.C. Schindler’s anthology of essays Being Holy in the World which includes such titles as Stratford Caldecott’s “The Marian Dimension of Existence” and Antonio Lopez’s “An Approach to a Theology of Gift” which aims at no less than “a metaphysics of charity.”
Our church history collection has been enhanced by the addition of Thomas Robinson’s historical study, Ignatius of Antioch and the Parting of the Ways: Early Jewish-Christian Relations, .Joan Wardrop’s study of Fountains Abbey and Its Benefactors 1132-1300, the largest and richest Cistercian abbey in medieval England, and Eric Gritsch’s study, Martin Luther: Anti-Semitism.
As for philosophical studies, we added Merold Westphal’s Whose Community? Which Interpretation?: Philosophical Hermeneutics for the Church.
Finally, there is a significant addition to our library of recorded liturgical music: Echoes From Calvary: Meditations on Franz Joseph Haydn’s ‘The Seven Last Words of Christ, a book of meditations on the text along with a CD recording of the cantata."
Visit the Seminary Library to check out the full selection today!
For more information please contact:
Rev. Lawrence B. Porter, Ph.D.