The Paschal Mystery: Meditations on the Last Three Days of Holy Week


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By Louis Bouyer | Introduction by Michael Heintz

The Sacred Triduum is both source and zenith of the Catholic liturgical year. In this illuminating volume, Louis Bouyer explains the liturgies of the last three days of Holy Week, their storied history, rich symbolism, and profound spiritual power—underscoring the ultimate reality of the Paschal Mystery as the Mystical Body of Christ’s participation in the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Describing his study as both eminently practical and basically biblical, Bouyer draws forth an understanding of the liturgy as “the life reflected in the pages of the Bible, concretized in a devotional action,” and the rites and ceremonies of the Triduum as the celebration par excellence of the living mystery of salvation.

Together with its changeless Head, the Mystical Body, ever renewed, partakes of the Last Supper, is stretched upon the cross, and descends into the tomb to rise again on the third day. This is the paschal mystery. (Louis Bouyer)

First published two decades before the Second Vatican Council, The Paschal Mystery: Meditations on the Last Three Days of Holy Week continues to be a source of insight and inspiration for both the preaching and the reception of the Gospel.

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Louis Bouyer (1913–2004) was a member of the French Oratory and one of the most respected and visionary Catholic scholars and theologians of his time. Formerly a Lutheran minister, he entered the Catholic Church in 1939. Bouyer wrote over fifty works, including The Bible and the Gospel, Christian Initiation, and Liturgical Piety.

Michael Heintz is a priest of the Diocese of Fort Wayne–South Bend, Indiana, currently serving as academic dean and associate professor of historical and systematic theology at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

Paperback: 404pp.

ISBN: 978-1685950248