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Anonymous Christians"" is a term which has come into vogue recently to describe persons who, though not formally Christians, are nonetheless ""men of good will"" and therefore participate, by a gratuitous and divine dispensation, in the Mystical Body of Christ. Thus, Miss Rper points out, even though all salvation is of Christ and through Christ, that salvation is hardly confined to the relatively small number of Christians, and The Anonymous Christian explores where the Anonymous Christians are, why they are anonymous and how they came to be both anonymous and Christian. There are two factors in the book which nag at the reader. The first is the tincture of triumphalism implicit in the concept of ""anonymous Christians"" -- a triumphalism which, one had hoped, would be thrown out of Pope John's open window. The second is the recurring thought that, on premises analogous to those of Miss Rper, one might conclude with equal validity that the churches of Christendom are filled with Anonymous Atheists -- i.e., with formal Christians who live, in fact, as if they do not believe in God. Be that as it may, the book will probably enjoy a certain success despite the literalness of this translation from the German, for it is the first work to appear on a concept which, for all its faults, seems popular among theologians.

Pub Date: Oct. 5th, 1966
Publisher: Sheed & Ward