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Feb
6
You need the Didache Bible in your home
Posted by admin on 06 February 2015 02:34 PM

I love books. My wife would say I have a "problem". My book shelves would probably agree.

I love browsing new Catholic book catalogs like some people enjoy clothing catalogs. But there's one category of book that I typically don't get that excited about. Bibles.

Don't get me wrong, I like the Bible. I'm actually 34% through the one-year Bible reading plan on my Verbum phone app that I started at the beginning of 2014. But when I see an announcement about some new Bible with a special theme I typically just think "Meh".

When I first saw the announcement from Ignatius Press about the new Didache Bible. I wasn't that interested. It has "commentaries based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church." Yawn. "More than 100 apologetic explanations that help to answer common questions about the faith." That's a little more interesting.

The Didache Bible
The Didache Bible

And then I actually opened a copy.

After just a few minutes of leafing through the Didache Bible I have decided that I need to buy one even though we already have several different Bibles in our home. I sometimes buy new books just because I have open space on my shelves. This isn't one of those purchases.

A quick note about the page samples: The pages do have burgundy highlights on the titles and lines separating the text from the commentary but my scanner decided that color was not on the menu today.

The Catechism integration with the Bible replaces the standard Revised Standard Bible footnotes and the change is fantastic. While not overwhelming each page with commentary, the notes do a wonderful job of expounding on the text while tying in themes from the Catechism.

Didache Bible Sample Page
Didache Bible Sample Page. Notice the cross-reference verses and wonderful commentary under the text. Most pages have 20% or less space taken up by commentary.

Each book of the Bible has a brief introduction explaining the historical context and themes and those apologetics notes that I mentioned before? Those are fantastic. Whether you need clarification about the place of Mary in the Church, the necessity of the liturgy or speaking in tongues, there's a one-to-two page essay on the topic (and dozens of others). Each essay has copious citations to Bible verses and the Catechism.

 

What do you want to know about angels?
What do you want to know about angels?

 

It's like having your own apologetics library in one book.
It's like having your own apologetics library in one book.

The one thing that I always loved looking at in Bibles, apart from old family records, were the maps. Geography and history, especially war, have always been a fascination of mine. Growing up, I probably devoted a couple of years to drawing pictures of D-Day and the Little Bighorn. The maps in the Didache Bible are not your standard maps. Of course there are maps showing the location of the twelve tribes and the trips of St. Paul but there are also maps showing the journeys of Lot, Jacob and Rebekah, Abraham and the Exodus. All are in full color.

Didache Bible Maps are great!
Didache Bible Maps are great!

The back of the Bible also contains an extensive glossary, primarily of proper names, and a subject index.

Subject index
Subject index
Extensive glossary
Extensive glossary
Book introduction
Book introduction

All in all, I am thoroughly impressed with the supplementary content of this Bible and highly recommend it to anyone who wants a Bible with helpful tools but isn't quite ready to tackle a full study Bible like the Catholic Study Bible series from Ignatius Press.

Order Now

Be sure to listen to my interview with Mark Brumley, President of Ignatius Press about the Didache Bible.


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Nov
21
Review of English Proper Choir Books over at Corpus Christi Watershed
Posted by admin on 21 November 2014 10:27 AM

Jeff Ostrowski has written a detailed review of the new English Propers choir books that Aquinas and More is publishing.  Here's a bit:

Anyone interested in restoring the Propers to a vernacular Mass ought to pick up a copy of this two-volume set. The settings are very simple: even a single cantor can tackle them. The editor has included a few Latin verses for the more famous Introits, but less than 1% of the entire book is in Latin. He has also included nice artwork with reflections.

Read the whole review.

Order for your parish now.


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Nov
17
Scott Hahn's Best Friends
Posted by Stuart Dunn on 17 November 2014 04:01 AM

5stars

  • Image Books
    Hardcover
    208 pp.
  • ISBN: 0307590798

Scott Hahn is one of the greatest converts to Catholicism in modern history. His conversion story Rome Sweet Home alone has led many to the Faith and many more back to the Faith they left. This work alone would be enough to cement his legacy, but he has written a great many other notable works, including The Lamb's Supper and A Father Who Keeps His Promises, to further expound on the faith and teach converts, cradles, and reverts alike. Lately, Dr. Hahn has been publishing high theology works, which challenge us to grow in our faith and progress from spiritual milk to spiritual meat. Dr. Hahn has returned with a new work entitled Angels and Saints, which is a return to his way of writing that helped so many of us grow in the faith so many years ago.

Angels and Saints begins with a personal story of Dr. Hahn and his family travelling in Assisi when he and his children were younger. One of his children had just had an emergency appendectomy, but the doctor said he would be okay to go on the pilgrimage. Predictably, the child was fine at first but had complications while in Assisi, and his condition became life-threatening. Doing the only thing he knew how to do, Dr. Hahn prayed all night and thankfully the child recovered miraculously. The remainder of Part I of the book explains what saints are, titles the Church bestows on holy men and women on the path to sainthood, what saints do, and a brief description of what angels are and names for the different types on angels.

In Part II, we are treated to twelve chapters with each one focusing on a specific individual in Heaven. We see great men and women like St. Michael the Archangel; Mary, Queen of Heaven; and even Old Testament great, Moses. I will be focusing on one of my favorite saints, St. Jerome. Dr. Hahn begins with a brief description of St. Jerome's early life, his genius at an early age, and his places of study. He then details the path that led him to the priesthood and eventual composition/translation of the Vulgate. The most fascinating part of this chapter discussed St. Jerome's circle of friends/students. They were mostly women, but he taught them the Bible, Biblical languages, and Biblical exegesis that some even surpassed him in some of these categories. He challenged them and they challenged him, and all grew in their wisdom and love of Christ. It was a perfect example of steel sharpening steel and proof that saints don't get to Heaven alone, but with the help of others. The chapter closes with a passage from "Against Vigilantius" and has the brilliance and sharp tongue St. Jerome was famous for.

The other eleven chapters focusing on specific holy individuals are just as brilliant as the one on St. Jerome. Dr. Hahn then closes the book by bringing us back to Assisi to discuss family and salvation and calling us all to be saints. I can't imagine how tough it was for Dr. Hahn to narrow down his choice of saints for this book. He picked some big names in the Western Church, like St. Augustine, St. Aquinas, and St. Thérèse of Lisieux. I wish there would have been a few more Eastern saints, aside from St. Irenaeus of Lyons. It would have been great to read about St. John Chrysostom, St. Athanasius of Alexandria, or one of the Cappadocian Fathers. This does not lower my review of the book though. It is still a 5-star book, and a welcome addition to any Catholics library.


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Oct
16
Don't Worry - A Tiber River Review
Posted by Renee Gardinar on 16 October 2014 12:42 PM
  • Liguori
  • Paperback
  • 112 pp.

4 Stars

 A Worrier's Guide to the Bible: 50 Verses to Ease Anxieties written by Gary Zimak is a book for all of us since despite what Scripture teaches, many of us still fall into worry over past events, the present and most especially the future.

When I requested this title, I expected to receive little more than a folded pamphlet but Zimak was able to take the topic of worry and find so much in scriptures to produce a book of over one hundred pages to guide us toward peace in our lives. There are eight chapters: Confusion, Despair, Doubt, Fear, Persecution, Sickness, Trials & Tribulation and The Secret Weapon. Each chapter begins with an introduction followed by multiple Scripture verses, explanations (in many ways a devotional) and finally a prayer. The reader can go from page one until the end or jump around to a specific topic that speaks to one's heart. There is something in this book for everyone.

Although I have yet to read all the entries, I have found nuggets of wisdom in each entry I have read. I was reminded that 'the most important lesson for us is that we should always turn to the Lord in times of confusion" and that "if something is in accordance with God's will, you'll often experience a feeling of peace and contentment".

This book is one that would be perfect to leave in a doctor's office, a hospital waiting room, or even just on a park bench. Worry is such a constant presence in our lives and we all need the reminder that we are to turn to Him at all times in all situations.


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Dec
22
The Magnificat Year of Faith Companion - A Tiber River Review
Posted by Ian on 22 December 2012 10:49 AM

The Magnificat Year of Faith Companion

I have long been a fan of Magnificat's books. Their simple companions to praying the rosary or to the liturgical seasons of Lent or Advent have served as guides to helping me focus on prayer and meditation. Their more complex books such as The Beauty of the Word or the series praying with the gospels help me to steadily meditate on larger works over the year. In short, I have come to rely on them.

When Pope Benedict XVI's proclaimed this liturgical year as The Year of Faith, Magnificat produced aYear of Faith Companion with short readings focusing on faith. This pocket-sized book is packed with reflections for every day of the year from over 30 contributors, ranging from laypeople to religious and clergy.  The readings are also wide-ranging, falling into one of eight categories: Biblical faith profiles, scriptural reflections, catechism excerpts, devotions, essays, meditations from saints and spiritual masters, prayers, and poetry. All in all, there is a wealth of material at your fingertips in this small book.

Read the rest of the review >>


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Dec
11
Get Some Help Along the Way for the Year of Faith
Posted by Ian on 11 December 2012 05:39 AM

Deacon Bickerstaff over at The Integrated Catholic Life has a great book recommendation for the Year of Faith:

 

The journey of faith is at the heart of why we are in this earthly life. Our God has issued an invitation to us… He has called us to a life of holiness and a communion of love with Him in this life and the life to come. He has called us to faith.

So often in this life, we lose sight of this important truth and gift. The demands of our daily living distract us from our true purpose and we find that our spiritual growth stagnates. We tend to compartmentalize our lives. The practice of faith is restricted to our time at church. Our family time is focused on earthly concerns of raising children and tending to spouses according to the expectations of the secular world. Work and career seem to override other considerations as we seek economic survival and professional success. The role of faith beyond the walls of the church is sometimes restricted to occasional prayers before meals, turning the religious education of our children over to others and the occasional pangs of guilt that arise when we discover that our decisions in all areas seldom consider the will of God.

For many of us, we recognize this deficiency and disconnect between the life of faith to which God has called us and the lives we lead. We may even try to correct this, but are we making progress?

We are in the midst of a Year of Faith, announced by Pope Benedict XVI, that began on October 11, 2012 – the Fiftieth Anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council. This is a great gift for us; a time to rededicate ourselves to the journey of faith and a deepening of our life of prayer and a renewal of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in our lives.

Along the Way: Lessons for an Authentic Journey of Faith

New Book from Randy Hain

Along the Way – Lessons for an Authentic Journey of Faith

A quick search on the internet and your parish book racks will provide you with many tools and resources to aid you in this effort. But, I encourage you to obtain a copy of Randy Hain’s new book, Along the Way – Lessons for an Authentic Journey of Faith, Liguori Publications, 2012. In this book, you will find practical guidance for allowing the ordinary challenges of daily living to become moments of grace and spiritual growth.

Read the rest >>>


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