Book Review (not really): Beauty in the Word by Stratford Caldecott

Beauty in the WordBeauty in the Word by Stratford Caldecott

I cannot give this book any stars. Not because I’m upset to have read it in any way. Not because I don’t think it’s a valuable read for one in my “profession.”

But mostly because it was mostly beyond me.

Oh, there were parts that I enthusiastically agreed with, that I understood quite well, but there were also parts where the underpinnings of philosophical and/or theological thought undid me thoroughly.

It took me a long time to read – I was often intimidated by the Roman Catholic-ness of the work. Not being in that faith tradition, it’s often foreign and like jumping across slippery rocks to understand the implications that Caldecott was indicating. As a Reformed Protestant, his particular concern that liturgy trump scripture I found difficult to reconcile.

This is a book to come back to, I suppose. I appreciate those who have wrestled with Caldecott’s ideas ahead of me (like Cindy Rollins) and translated many of them (particularly Remembrance). I cannot rate it because I struggled with it so much over so long a time – 2+ years? and it’s a short book. I’m glad I’ve read it. I’m almost more glad I’ve finished it. The deficiencies are all mine and I do recommend wrestling with it. I plan to do so again. Someday.

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