SVS Press Publishes Books on Primacy and Conciliarity

SVS Press Publishes Books on Primacy and Conciliarity




19 January 2016 • SVOTS Communications / Yonkers, NY

Amid global discussions regarding the Great Council of the Orthodox Church in 2016, St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press (SVS Press) is exploring the topics of primacy and conciliarity in two of its new publications. Both are compilations that include expert scholars: one is a book titled Primacy in the Church: The Office of Primate and the Authority of Councils (Volume I), edited by the Reverend Dr. John Chryssavgis, archdeacon of the Ecumenical Patriarchate; the other is the newest issue of St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly (Vol. 60, No. 1–2), edited by Dr. Paul Meyendorff, The Father Alexander Schmemann Professor of Liturgical Theology at St. Vladimir’s Seminary.

Primacy in the Church will be formally released at the Seminary’s 33rd Father Alexander Schmemann Memorial Lecture, to be held Sunday, January 31, 2016, at 7 p.m. on the seminary campus. The editor of the volume is also this year’s Schmemann lecturer, and he will speak on the topic, “Toward the Holy and Great Council: Retrieving a Culture of Conciliarity and Consensus.”

This first volume of Primacy in the Church examines the development and application of a theology of primacy and synodality through the centuries, and addresses what is arguably the most significant and sensitive issue in both inter-Orthodox debate and inter-Christian dialogue—namely, the authority of the primate and the role of councils in the thought and tradition of the Church. The editor draws together original contributions from prominent scholars today, complemented by formative selections from theologians in the recent past, as well as relevant ecumenical documents. The second volume, to be released this spring, will explore how such a theology can inform contemporary ecclesiology and reconcile current practices.

“The editor and contributor of four articles, Father John Chryssavgis, is to be commended and congratulated because he managed—cooperating with St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press—to place at the disposal of church authorities and theologians a valuable resource on a crucial issue,” praised His Eminence Geron Archbishop Demetrios of America.

Commenting on the special Quarterly issue, Dr. Meyendorff said, “In this special double issue, some 20 scholars, primarily Orthodox, but also Protestant and Roman Catholic, reflect on the chief issues the upcoming council will (or will not) address, as well as their desires and hopes for its outcome.

“Reflecting a broad spectrum of perspectives, the contributors clearly demonstrate the multiple challenges that face contemporary Orthodoxy, both internally and also in relation to other Christian churches,” he concluded.

SVS Press is offering a pre-publication discount on Primacy in the Church (Volume I) through January 31, 2016. It may be purchased here.

The special double issue of St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly may be purchased here.


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About author

St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Seminary

St. Vladimir’s embraces the challenge of serving the Church and the needs of Orthodox Christians in the 21st Century. Time brings change but the Truth of the Gospel is eternally unchanging; adjustments must be made to engage a rapidly changing world, but without sacrificing that which is the same yesterday, today, and forever.