One Baptism: Ecumenical Dimensions of the Doctrine of Baptism

Overview

Most Christians would say that baptism is the one sacrament Christians of al denominations share, that it is the source of ecumenical unity among al Christian churches. But how true is that? Is there really one baptism," as we profess in the Nicene Creed? If we disagree about what baptism does, can we really say that baptism unites us?

To address this central question Susan Wood brings together the history and theology of baptism (systematic, sacramental, and liturgical), ...

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One Baptism: Ecumenical Dimensions of the Doctrine of Baptism

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Overview

Most Christians would say that baptism is the one sacrament Christians of al denominations share, that it is the source of ecumenical unity among al Christian churches. But how true is that? Is there really one baptism," as we profess in the Nicene Creed? If we disagree about what baptism does, can we really say that baptism unites us?

To address this central question Susan Wood brings together the history and theology of baptism (systematic, sacramental, and liturgical), focusing especially on the divergent paths taken in the understanding of the sacrament since the Reformation. Founded not only in her study of theology but also in her years of participation in ecumenical dialogues, her perspective will illuminate this problem for readers and point the way toward deeper understanding.

Susan K. Wood, SCL, is professor of theology at Marquette University. Active in ecumenical work, she serves on the U.S. Lutheran 'Roman Catholic dialogue, the U.S. Roman Catholic 'Orthodox Theological Consultation, the conversation between the Roman Catholic Church and the Baptist World alliance, and the international Lutheran 'Roman Catholic Dialogue. She is an associate editor of Pro Ecclesia and serves on the editorial advisory board of the journal Ecclesiology. In addition to numerous articles, she has published Spiritual Exegesis and the Church in the Theology of Henri de Lubac (Eerdmans, 1998), Sacramental Orders (Liturgical Press, 2000), and is the editor of Ordering the Baptismal Priesthood (Liturgical Press, 2003).

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

The author, a professor at Marquette University, is attentive to the various confessional points of view on baptism and presents them in a way that allows not only comparison but also the emergence of new insights. In such a way, all Christians can, with mutual understanding and respect, progress along the sometimes difficult path toward a shared understanding of Nicene faith: ‘I acknowledge one baptism.’
Concilium

I highly recommend this book for all professors and students of the initiation rites, and any parish personnel dealing with candidates for full communion in the church who would like to have a better grasp of the beliefs of those seeking full communion.
Liturgical Ministry

. . . an excellent source for an overview of where all of the major traditions align themselves on baptism.
Catholic Studies

No future ecumenical conversation can afford to neglect Susan Wood’s important contribution. She has certainly done what she hoped to do. She has produced a significant contribution on the path to Christian unity.
The Living Church

A fine treatment of baptism, of interest to theologians systematic, ecumenical, and liturgical alike.
Theological Studies

The author has listened carefully to various points of view about baptism, and has presented these in a way that permits not just comparison but the emergence of new insights. She has gone far in answering her own question, ‘What does baptism do?’ Baptism offers a foretaste of eschatological glory. Wood shows that Christians can walk the sometimes tortuous path to that goal with mutual respect and tangible hope.
Worship

One Baptism delivers a vast, rich spectrum of meaning that is brought to baptism by the many Christian churches and communions. . . . [This] is a fascinating, comprehensive study that will eventually bring us closer to the unity we profess in sharing ‘one baptism’. The book also contains four helpful indices: subjects, documents, proper names, and Scripture citations.
Pastoral Music

Susan K. Wood’s ecumenical study of our 'one Baptism' merits wide attention from systematic, historical, and liturgical theologians. Baptism and Eschatology, Baptism and Justification, Baptism and Church are just some of the topics that this liturgically grounded and readable study treats with clarity and precision. A veteran of Roman Catholic–Lutheran dialogues, Susan Wood does here what many of us have been calling on theologians to do for some time, i.e., to root soteriology and ecclesiology in God’s gracious gift of new life in water and the Holy Spirit in the font of grace where all new life begins so that a baptismal ecclesiology might be generated.
Maxwell E. Johnson, University of Notre Dame

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814653067
  • Publisher: Liturgical Press, The
  • Publication date: 7/28/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 232
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author


Susan K. Wood, SCL, is professor of theology at Marquette University. Active in ecumenical work, she serves on the U.S. Lutheran-Roman Catholic dialogue, the U.S. Roman Catholic-Orthodox Theological Consultation, the conversation between the Roman Catholic Church and the Baptist World Alliance, and the international Lutheran- Roman Catholic Dialogue. She is an associate editor of Pro Ecclesia and serves on the editorial advisory board of the journal Ecclesiology. In addition to numerous articles, she has published Spiritual Exegesis and the Church in the Theology of Henri de Lubac (Eerdmans, 1998), Sacramental Orders (Liturgical Press, 2 ), and is the editor of Ordering the Baptismal Priesthood (Liturgical Press, 2003).
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Table of Contents

Abbreviations ix

Introduction xi

Chapter 1 Baptism, Eschatology, and Salvation 1

Chapter 2 The Doctrine of Baptism: Sacramental Concepts and Developments on the Eve of the Reformation 20

Chapter 3 The Doctrine of Baptism: The Reformers and Catholic Responses 44

Chapter 4 Baptism and Patterns of Initiation: Catholics and Orthodox 91

Chapter 5 Baptism and Patterns of Initiation: Protestant Traditions 121

Chapter 6 Baptism, Faith, and Justification 146

Chapter 7 Baptism and the Church 177

Index of Subjects 209

Index of Documents 212

Index of Proper Names 214

Index of Scripture Citations 216

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