Saturday, January 22, 2011

St. Vincent, deacon & martyr - Réouverture de Sainte-Anne (Basse Ville) - Catholic Commentary for the Year of Matthew

Almighty ever-living God, mercifully pour out your Spirit upon us, so that our hearts may possess that strong love by which the Martyr Saint Vincent triumphed over all bodily torments.  Through our Lord.

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Réouverture de l'Église Sainte Anne

Dimanche le 16 janvier, abbé Daniel Berniquez, v.e., m’a accompagné à l’Église Sainte Anne pour une messe marquant officiellement la réouverture d’un lieu de culte fermé en avril 2009 par l’effondrement du transept ouest.

Un grand nombre de fidèles était présent pour cette joyeuse occasion, suivie d’une réception simple et chaleureuse.

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Last week, I received a complementary copy of the commentary on the Gospel of Matthew in the series Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture, an interesting collaboration of Catholic scholars with an evangelical publishing house (Baker Academic).

I have been browsing through the commentary, reading parts of the commentary and delving into sidebars on evangelization, angels in the Old Testament, binding and loosing, John Paul II's words to the rich young man in Veritatis splendor, etc.  While this is the Year of Matthew, our weekday readings in the first part of the year are from Mark; we will begin to read Matthew on weekdays in mid-June through to the end of August).  After the Christmas season, this weekend we resume reading from Matthew's gospel and will do so almost continuously until Advent (end of November).

The authors are closely associated with Catholic centres of education and evangelization:

Curtis Mitch (MA, Franciscan University) is research fellow and trustee of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology in Steubenville, Ohio, and coauthor with Scott Hahn of the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible.

Edward Sri (STD, Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas, Rome), provost and professor of theology and Scripture at the Augustine Institute in Denver, Colorado, is a founding leader with Curtis Martin of FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) and the author of several books on Scripture and the Catholic faith.

The series itself strives to help Catholics develop a love of Scripture and a desire to share it, which is what led me to say yes to joining the consulting editors, even if I have not been able to attend meetings at the Catholic Biblical Association conventions for the last several summers:

The Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture (CCSS) responds to the desire of Catholics to study the Bible in depth and in a way that integrates Scripture with Catholic doctrine, worship, and daily life. The series will include seventeen volumes, offering readable, informative commentary on each book of the New Testament.

The CCSS implements the theological principles taught by Vatican II for interpreting Scripture "in accord with the same Spirit by which it was written"--that is, interpreting Scripture in its canonical context and in the light of Catholic tradition and the analogy of faith (Dei Verbum 12).

The CCSS is packed with features designed to help readers use the Bible more effectively in teaching, preaching, evangelization, and other forms of ministry.

Each volume provides exegesis as well as reflection and application sections.

A set of cross-references links each passage to the Catechism, the Lectionary, and related biblical texts.

Sidebars present information on the background of the text and on how the text has been interpreted by the Church.

Abundant quotations from saints and Church Fathers enable readers to glimpse the continuity of Catholic tradition.

Each volume includes a Glossary, a list of Suggested Resources, an Index of Pastoral Topics, and an Index of Sidebars. Further resources are posted at the series Web site,

At US$21.95, the paperback volume is good value. You can read the preface and introduction to the present volume by going to the following site:

It's a perfect complement to my own reflections on the Gospels of this Year A published in Living God's Word: Reflections on the Sunday Readings for Year A (Toronto & Montreal: Novalis, 2010). 

An excerpt from it to whet your appetite for more (Mary "Pondered in Her Heart") is found in the January issue of the missalette Living with Christ, pp. 173-175.

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