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book image Religion
Evangeliario
  

Artwork by Father Antonio Serrano
Illustrated. 360 pp.
Liturgical Press. US$435.00
ISBN: 9780814628119

Once again, Liturgical Press has done a surpassing job of creating a Christian work that, by its beauty, simplicity, and attention to artistry, encourages the mind to rest on the sacred words of Christ. An evangelical text that is also a piece of art brings grace to the service because God inspires the creative touch of the artist. The artist transfers God's inspiration into a physical object that is used in sacred rites. The participants in these rites are touched by God's beauty through His means of art and the artist.

The Evangeliario, or Book of Gospels, is one of the most sacred books in the Church. Traditionally, it saw use only in ceremonies presided over by a bishop, which limited the houses of worship where it could be used. Now, the Revised General Instruction of the Roman Missal has made obligatory the use of the Book of Gospels at every Sunday mass.

The Book of Gospels holds an ascendant place in Church liturgy. It ritualistically and symbolically demonstrates the Church's faith that the Gospel of Christ is literally His word. Because of its primacy -- and visibility -- in the Sunday mass, it is a book that has always been created with great artistry.

Liturgical Press' Evangeliario represents a strong continuation of this tradition. This volume is an elegant example of the use of color, form, and image in liturgical printing. Through its artistry, it both conveys and amplifies the message of Scripture.

It also is an important example of the syncretism of cultural traditions. The words of Christ in the Spanish language are bordered by colorful motifs of Mexican artwork, while interspersed through the text are vividly hued religious works by some of the great masters. It is a masterful blend of the contemporary and the traditional with visual evidence of influence from both sides of the Atlantic.

Sylvia Breau, for Notable Book Reviews
Notable Book Reviews received one or more copies of this book in exchange for this review.
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