Second Liturgical institute Student Successfully Defends Doctoral Dissertation
On May 4th, 2011, Institute Student Fr. Anthony Putti successfully defended his doctoral dissertation, becoming the second graduate of the Liturgical Institute to complete the degree of Doctor of Sacred Theology. The culmination of five years of research and writing, his doctoral dissertation, entitled "Theosis Through Liturgy in the Theologies of Alexander Schmemann and Dumitru Staniloae," was written under the direction of faculty member Fr. Emery De Gaal.
Fr. Putti explained that the Eastern notion of theosis, often called divinization in the West, has strong biblical and patristic support, as in St. Athanasius' famous statement that God became man so that man might become God. In particular, the dissertation focused on comparing the understanding of theosis in two of the twentieth century's great Orthodox theologians.
Schmemann, who served for over 40 years at St. Vladimir's Seminary in New York, is known for his writings on the sacred liturgy, many of which have been available in English for decades. Fr. Putti argued that Schmemann's model saw the Church as the enablign agent of theosis through the sacred liturgy, making theosis the goal of the Christian life in God by the Holy Spirit.
The doctoral defense board spoke highly of Fr. Putti's introduction of the important work of Staniloae to the English-speaking world. A Romanian priest, Staniloae (1903-1993) proposed a mystical-dogmatic approach to theosis centered on the vision of God as three divine persons, envisioning the mystery of the Incarnation as the basis for the transfiguration of the entire cosmos.
The Liturgical Institute congratulates Fr. Putti for his careful academic work and intellectual rigor, and look forward to his scholarly contribution to the Church's liturgical life.
Father Dumitru Staniloae:Orthodox Spirituality
Dumitru Staniloae: An Ecumenical Ecclesiology by Radu Bordeianu
His obituary in The Independent.