Below is a review which I recently wrote for Homiletic and Pastoral Review on Cardinal Marc Ouellet’s work, Mystery and Sacrament of Love: A Theology of Marriage and the Family for the New Evangelization. There is much in this book which would do good to those currently engaged in discussions around how many live the sacrament of marriage in our world today, particularly in light of the two Synods on Marriage and Family, and the resultant Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia.



Mystery and Sacrament of Love: A Theology of Marriage and the Family for the New Evangelization, by Cardinal Marc Ouellet. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2015 (ISBN 978-0-802-87334-7), xiv + 346 pp., $35.00. Review by Thomas V. Gourlay.

Reputedly a significant potential candidate in the most recent papal conclave, and leading light of the Communio circle of scholars world-wide, Cardinal Marc Ouellet’s publication, Mystery and Sacrament of Love—an English translation of a work previously available in both French and Italian—is a prayerful, pastoral, and theologically rigorous Sacramental theology that is much-needed in our time.

With the synods dealing with marriage and the family now behind us, and with the (in)famous Apostolic Exhortation, Amoris Laetita, still the subject of intense discussion, Ouellet’s work, which predates the synods and the exhortation, offers a mode of pastoral engagement with the real issues that plague marriage and the family in our contemporary world. His efforts here are informed by a deeply spiritual, and academically rigorous, theological reflection.

Readers familiar with Ouellet’s previous work will… [continue reading…]