Luke's Reviews > The Awe-Inspiring Rites of Initiation: The Origins of the RCIA

The Awe-Inspiring Rites of Initiation by Edward Yarnold
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's review
Apr 23, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: church_history, early_church, liturgy, preaching, sacraments, worship, theology
Read from April 23 to 28, 2012

Compilation of sermons from four 4th century preachers that would have been given to people in the process of baptism (both before and after). Fascinating to see the development in thought from the earlier to later preachers, solidifying the practices and thus the theology of the sacraments that would define the church. Yarnold does an excellent job locating the 4th century church in the midst of cultural shifts with the rise of Constantine and the interaction between mystery religions and Christian rituals.

As a 21st century reader, it interests me to consider taking part in a ritual which I had never witnessed previously. Whereas new converts to Christianity will have likely witnessed other individuals being baptized prior to their own conversion, 4th century Christians would have first witnessed the ritual of baptism (and communion) on the occasion of their own initiation into the Church.

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