Saturday, September 30, 2006

Saintly Coincidence

Yesterday I had an errund to run in and afterwards I decided to stop into the diocesan bookstore and have a look around. I don't frequent the shop but do go every once in a while. A gentleman who works there asked me if I needed any help so I said, "Yes, can you show me where the Bible study things are?"

"Bible study? Hrm...I don't know if we have any of that," he replied.

It's probably not a question he hears everyday in a Catholic book store (regretfully) so I don't fault him for his reply.

"How about the Ignatius or Navarre series?" I clarified. "Ah yes!" he said, "they are right over here," and promptly showed me to the Navarre set on the shelf. I hadn't the intention of walking out with them but when I got there something compelled me to consider it.

I've heard about the Navarre Bible series many times. Even Mother Angelica has said "if you only buy one book a year...get one of these," on her Live show. Since the last few weeks this is what I've wanted - a good Catholic scripture study. Now a group would be ideal but I've got to take what I can get. And perhaps this is the way I need to do it right now. So that being said...

I bought one volume to try it out. The Catholic Epistles were my first choice since James is my favorite epistle. I had a chance to look over it last night and the commentary is fantastic. Its better than any other I've read. The series is for college level study so its right on my level.

And then...I wake up to the feast of St. Jerome. St. Jerome is responsible for much of the Bible we have an know today. This great Saint and Doctor of the Church was a gift to the entire Christian world. Without him, its possible we would not have the Bible. His work of translating the Greek and Hebrew texts into Latin standardized the text for the entire world. His version of the Latin Vulgate is used today and remained the official version of the Bible for Catholics until the mid-20th century.

His most famous quote is: "Ignorance of scripture is ignorance of Christ."

Read more about Saint Jerome here.


Moonshadow said...

I'm using Navarre's Pentateuch for Year One of the old Denver CBS Program, in-parish version.

The treasure of the commentary, imo, is the inclusion of quotations from Church documents and saintly Catholic exegetes through the centuries.

These faithful, uplifting insights just can't be found in any other Catholic commentary series.

Mary Ann said...

I started out with Matthew and it was an eye-opening experience. I cannot recommend these books enough!

My only complaint (really too minor to be a complaint) is that they quote heavily from the writing of St. Josemaria Escriva. Only natural, I suppose, since he was on the faculty at Navarre and started the Navarre Bible Commentary project.

Moonshadow said...

that they quote heavily from the writing of St. Josemaria Escriva

That's to be expected, given his prominence vis a vis the university and the commentary series.

Matt said...

I've been delving into 1 Peter a bit and I'll tell ya...if we had this in my Protestant days none of us would have stayed that way for very long. Its so in depth and researched, yet it gives you the touch of the "personal" sde of things too.

"The whole truth is generally the ally of virtue; a half-truth is always the ally of some vice." - G.K. Chesterton