Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist,” by Brant Pitre does a marvelous job of sharing his knowledge and research into Jewish traditions and Old Testament Scripture that is easy to read yet provides a wealth of information on the Last Supper. Want to know what the Passover was like at the time of Jesus and what Jesus meant when he said, "This is my body...This is my blood? This book opens your eyes to the magnificent story of God's presence - the mystery that we are called to see and are invited to partake in. It helps one truly believe in the mystery of the real presence of Christ, body, blood, soul, and divinity in the Eucharist.
As a 2019 Pew Research study suggests, just one-third of American Catholics believe that Jesus is truly present in the Eucharist, but the transubstantiation is a unique and differentiating component of Catholicism compared to other Christian denominations who view the bread and wine as symbols of Jesus Christ, not the actual Divine Person. Of those two-thirds who do not believe, there is much confusion. Many do not know or understand this fundamental Catholic teaching. So what to do? Enter: Dr. Brant Pitre and his book, Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist: Unlocking the Secrets of the Last Supper.
This book really is a must-read for Catholics, whether they are confident in their faith and want to help share the wonder and beauty of the Eucharist with family and friends, or if they struggle with this teaching and want to learn more about it. While Pitre has the chops to write a book that is highly academic, he makes Jewish Roots both intellectually satisfying while also keeping the style easy to read, making this a book that anyone from high school age and up would benefit from and enjoy.
Pitre doesn’t shy away from the hard truths, doing an excellent job of explaining the richness of scriptural texts, from the foreshadowing of the Eucharist in the Old Testament through to its institution at the Last Supper in the New Testament. The beauty of our Catholic faith comes from the meeting of Scripture and Tradition. Pitre relies on both, and offers guidance with a discussion guide and questions listed in the back of the book for anyone who would like to follow along with them or go deeper into the text.
A great book, whether you’re reading it on your own, with family, or in a study group, Dr. Brant Pitre’s Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist, should be on every Catholics Must Read Book List.
St. Teresa of Avila is a Doctor of the Church who led many people to build a relationship with Jesus through a very special type of prayer. She taught people to build an interior castle. The interior castle is inside of each of us. We each have our own interior castle. Consider using the time in Lent to discover it and make it strong.
Written for children ages 7 and up, "The Interior Castle," by Judith Boulloc will be enjoyed and will inspired readers of all ages. Based on St. Theresa of Avila’s classic work, "The Interior Castle," it is a beautifully illustrated book that engages the reader in the treasure to be found in a personal conversation with God. The story follows a boy who journeys through the steps of contemplative prayer.
Illustrated by award-winner Eric Puybaret.