Baltimore, Maryland: Helicon Press, 1961. First edition. Octavo, original blue cloth lettered in silver, original dust jacket. Bookseller's ticket. A fine copy in a bright, price-clipped dust jacket. Item #1060
"THE CHURCH, THIS PERFECT SOCIETY, IS ALSO AND ABOVE ALL THE LIVING BODY OF CHRIST" First edition of this collection of essays by Godfrey Diekmann—a pioneer in the American Liturgical Movement and one of the theologians chosen to prepare the schema on Liturgy at the Second Vatican Council. Diekmann, the editor of Worship magazine, was part of the vibrant "Benedictine tradition being especially nurtured at St. John's Abbey and University in Collegeville, Minnesota, where in the 1930s Dom Virgil Michel had almost single-handedly launched a Liturgical Revival movement." The Liturgical Movement was animated by a "profound Benedictinism, so important to the German-American Catholic experience, having its origins in the early Church and emphasizing regularity of life, a balance of work and prayer, and theology anchored in the Scripture and the Church" (Kevin Starr, The Lost World). Consists of the introductory Part One: Popular Participation and the History of Christian Piety, and 13 additional essays grouped in three sections. Published as number 12 in the Benedictine Studies series (sponsored by the American Benedictine Academy, these essays capture a sense of liturgical revival with a nod to Tradition: "We are quite willing to make a reverential bow towards St. Thomas in every problem of theology. But we also know there have been some notable developments of theological thought since his time." With a Foreword by Edward D. Howard ("Archbishop of Portland, Oregon / 3 May 1961"), referencing Pope Pius XII's Mediator Dei, and acknowledging the need for a broad renewal: "It is especially heartening that these great modern stirrings of the Spirit in Church have American spokesmen as competent as Godfrey Diekmann, O.S.B. In his papers to the National Liturgical Weeks (which are reprinted in this book), in the monthly review which he edits, as well as in his retreat conferences to our clergy, we have found his presentation solidly theological yet eminently practical." Designed by Frank Kacmarcik. Approbations. Starr. The Lost World: American Catholic Non-Fiction at Midcentury.