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Liturgical Press

Liturgy and Life Study Bible

Edited by Paul Turner and John W. Martens, Foreword by Abbot Primate Gregory J. Polan, OSB

Liturgy and Life Study Bible SEE INSIDE
Liturgy and Life Study Bible

ISBN: 9780814664353, 6435

Details: 2312 pgs, 6 3/8 x 8 7/8 x 2
Publication Date: 06/23/2023
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2024 Association of Catholic Publishers First Place Award, Liturgy

How does the Bible form our worship practices? How does liturgy incorporate the Bible?
The Liturgy and Life Study Bible explores these questions and provides answers for today’s church. This indispensable guide includes essays from the world’s top liturgical and biblical scholars on a variety of subjects, including Jewish liturgical traditions, Psalms as liturgical prayer, early church worship, social justice, sacraments, the Last Supper, and more.

Throughout the biblical text, brief comments flag passages that contain something of liturgical or personal prayer interest. A correlation chart highlights the intersection between biblical passages and the Catholic liturgy, listing every place where a verse of the Bible appears in any liturgical book: the Missal, the orders of sacramental rites, even the Roman Gradual and the Martyrology.

This one-of-a-kind tool will serve researchers, catechists, preachers, and anyone studying the Bible for the purposes of prayer and meditation.

Uses the New American Bible, Revised Edition. Cover art by Jan Richardson.

Includes eight full color map images.


The Liturgy and Life Study Bible is a comprehensive resource that will help the reader engage worship and the Bible anew. Flip through the pages of the sample below to see the full table of contents, the list of contributors, and more.

Paul Turner is pastor of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Kansas City, Missouri and director of the Office of Divine Worship for the Diocese of Kansas City––St. Joseph. He holds a doctorate in sacred theology from Sant’ Anselmo in Rome. He is a former president of the North American Academy of Liturgy and a member of Societas Liturgica and the Catholic Academy of Liturgy. He is the author of numerous books published by Liturgical Press and a contributor to Give Us This Day.

John W. Martens is professor of theology and director of the Centre for Christian Engagement at St. Mark's College at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. For four years he wrote the Scripture column "The Word" at America Magazine. These columns have been published in three volumes by Liturgical Press, The Word on the Street, Years A, B, and C. He has also written extensively on children in early Christianity, including ‘Let the Little Children Come to Me’: Children and Childhood in Early Christianity (2009), with Cornelia Horn, and Children and Methods: Listening To and Learning From Children in the Biblical World (2020), with Kristine Henriksen Garroway.

ISBN: 9780814664353, 6435

Details: 2312 pgs, 6 3/8 x 8 7/8 x 2
Publication Date: 06/23/2023


"The Liturgy and Life Study Bible reveals how the word of God shapes every celebration of the liturgy."
From foreword by Abbot Primate Gregory J. Polan, OSB

"An indispensable resource and an instant classic."
James Martin, SJ, author of Learning to Pray

"Finally, a study Bible that aids the reader in understanding the deep relationship between Scripture and liturgy, filling the gap between Lectionary and Bible. The well-researched and readable introductory articles will be a welcome resource for liturgists and catechists alike."
Laurie Brink, OP, Professor of New Testament Studies, Catholic Theological Union

"No two fields of research fit together more naturally than biblical studies and liturgical studies, and no publisher is more equipped to join them than Liturgical Press. Nearly every part of the Bible was written for liturgy—the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms for the temple and synagogue, and the Gospels and Letters of the Apostles for proclamation on the Lord’s Day at the Christian Eucharist. The Bible leads to the liturgy of God’s people and finds its most transforming expression there. The Liturgy and Life Study Bible brings together outstanding biblical and liturgical scholars to help preachers, teachers, and students understand the connections that unite the Bible and the liturgy so harmoniously."
Stephen J. Binz, biblical writer-speaker and pilgrimage leader at

"The Second Vatican Council (1962-65) revitalized Catholic worship by expanding the use of the Scriptures in liturgy, especially at Sunday Mass. Surprisingly, of the many resources published to help Catholics explore Scripture since the Council, no study Bible has been devoted uniquely to the Scriptures within the liturgy—until now. The Liturgy and Life Study Bible fills this lack admirably. In addition to insights from the commentaries on each book of the Bible, the explanatory essays are an added bonus and worth the price of the book. An excellent resource for parishes, preachers, and parishioners alike."
Ronald D. Witherup, PSS, is former superior general of the Sulpicians and past president of the Catholic Biblical Association

“A brilliantly conceived and executed resource providing in one comprehensive volume what none other has achieved. This liturgically-oriented study Bible will enable the faithful to enter more deeply into the Word of God, ever living and active, as it constitutes the content of the church at prayer in the assembled body and each individual member. Particularly welcomed are the references at the bottom of every page indicating where the Scripture passages appear in not only the cycles of readings for the Mass but also all the other rites and blessings of the church. This unique service will go a long way in helping worshipers, pastoral ministers, and, not least homilists, more fully to understand and engage how the readings proclaimed in the moment of any liturgy bear potential connections to the broad range of participants’ lives of faith.”
Bruce T. Morrill, SJ, Vanderbilt University, author of Divine Worship and Human Healing

"Tour de Force is an understatement for this new work led by Dr. John W. Martens and Fr. Paul Turner. The Liturgy and Life Study Bible is one of those rare inspirations that leaves one thinking, 'How did we attempt to celebrate the Liturgy and to preach without it.' This is a work that will open to presiders and to all the faithful the all-encompassing Scriptural rootedness of the Liturgy of the Church, which was so greatly enhanced in the renewal following the Second Vatican Council. I can hardly wait to make this study Bible an integral part of my ministry and my spiritual life!"
Most Reverend Mark J. Seitz, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of El Paso

"Liturgy and Life Study Bible is a splendid incarnation of the truism: 'the Bible’s home is the liturgy.' The book unites three often solo voices in choral harmony: the entire Revised New American Bible with its introductions, biblical references, and explanatory notes; essays offering orientations on the various ways liturgy and Bible interact; and, most impressively, footnotes indicating every instance where the Bible is cited or alluded to in current liturgical/ritual books (e.g., Lectionary, Liturgy of the Hours, Rite of Baptism, Rite of Funerals, etc.)—the last being a research index where the 'angel is in the details.' Liturgy and Life Study Bible is a welcome, unique, and essential reference work for anyone engaging in liturgical ministry."
Normand Bonneau, OMI, Saint Paul University, Ottawa, Canada, author of The Sunday Lectionary: Ritual Word, Paschal Shape and The Bible in the Liturgy

"Sixty years after the Second Vatican Council began, this beautiful book offers the faithful a new opportunity to open up the treasures of the Bible more lavishly (Sacrosanctum Concilium 51). Fr. John W. Martens and Fr. Paul Turner have gathered a truly excellent community of writers who, with careful scholarship and pastoral hearts, have brought a 'liturgical eye' to the entirety of Scripture. This impressive resource invites readers to discover the intimate connection between Scripture and liturgical worship through comprehensive topical essays, focused introductions to biblical books, and notes which identify how the Bible appears in contemporary liturgical celebrations. Certainly, the Liturgy and Life Study Bible calls the faithful to encounter the Living Word more richly at the table of the Word, and to dwell with it—making it become our very life (Desiderio Desideravi 53). I am excited to have this resource on my shelf!"
Katharine E. Harmon, Associate Professor of Theology, Marian University (Indiana)

"In the Introduction to the Lectionary for Mass, the church reminds us that 'the word of God unceasingly calls to mind and extends the economy of salvation, which achieves its fullest expression in the Liturgy. The liturgical celebration becomes, therefore the continuing, complete and effective presentation of God’s word' (4). How fitting, then that we now can turn to a study Bible that looks at sacred Scripture from a liturgical perspective! It not only unveils the prayers and rituals of ancient worshippers but examines the Biblical passages which enrich our current liturgical texts. Liturgy and Life Study Bible offers splendid essays from a 'who’s who' of biblical and liturgical scholars, who offer commentary on each book of the Bible and keen insights into the culture of the times. Beyond mere footnotes, the authors succeeded in the herculean task of cross-referencing phrases in liturgical texts with their corresponding Biblical verse. This will prove to be an invaluable reference tool for preachers, liturgy students, parish worship commissions, lectors, catechists, and all of us whose personal prayer is grounded in God’s holy word. Our celebration of the liturgy can only be enriched by a better appreciation of the source texts and the unchanging expressions of our faith."
Rita A. Thiron, Executive Director, Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions (FDLC)

"Among the many fruits of the Second Vatican Council, one of the greatest has been the recovery of the profoundly symbiotic relationship between the church’s liturgy and the word of God. Our Scriptures were shaped by God’s holy people at worship, and in turn they inspire our worship today. Paul Turner and John Martens, together with a stellar group of scholars, have given preachers and people alike a truly remarkable resource."
Most Reverend John C. Wester, Archbishop of Santa Fe

"There are many editions of the Bible that are excellent for study and devotion. But the Liturgy and Life Study Bible, which powerfully highlights the connection between the Catholic liturgy and the Word of God, is unique. It will prove to be an invaluable resource, and will open our eyes to the surprising ways the Church uses Scripture in its prayer."
Rev. Andrew Menke, Executive Director, The International Commission on English in the Liturgy

"The Liturgy and Life Study Bible—the first to focus on the relationship between scripture and the church’s liturgy—is an enlightening, accessible exploration of the Word of God as the deep and complex heart of Catholic worship—beyond the Lectionary readings at Mass. This is an invaluable resource for homilists, catechists, RCIA ministers, and anyone who seeks to understand and explain the ancient biblical roots of our public prayer, as well as the role of scripture in liturgy today."
Tish Thornton, Director, Office of Worship, Roman Catholic Diocese of Boise

"Liturgy 'nerds' like me know why we need this Bible. The real question is: Why should anyone else? Pope Francis gives us the reason: 'How can we grow in our capacity to live in full the liturgical action? ...We are in need of a serious and dynamic liturgical formation' (Desiderio Desideravi 31). This singular Bible provides that necessary and accessible formation—for scholars, presiders, and preachers, yes, but also for every one of the faithful. Whether a liturgical minister or faith-sharing leader, a catechumen, catechist, or liturgical composer, a wedding or funeral coordinator or the most important minister of all, an assembly member, the Liturgy and Life Study Bible will be a treasure for anyone who wants to recover their capacity to be shaped and amazed by the liturgy we pray and are called to live in our daily lives.
Diana Macalintal, Cofounder, and

"The Liturgy and Life Study Bible is an extraordinary gift to all engaged in the life and ministry of the church. It opens up the treasures of sacred Scripture woven throughout the church’s liturgical rites, showing us the many and varied ways the mystery of Christ is constantly proclaimed and experienced in our lives. The Liturgy and Life Study Bible is a companion for a lifetime.
Christina Ronzio, Director of the National Liturgy Office, The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops

"The Liturgy and Life Study Bible answers the questions you have always had about the Bible and Catholic liturgy, and then some. How did ancient worship, Jewish and Christian, influence the texts we read today? How should we interpret the most important passages for understanding the sacraments and the liturgical seasons? The introductions to each book give essential historical and liturgical context, but the real gem is the running commentary at the bottom of each page, which combines accurate Biblical scholarship with a complete guide to the use of each passage in Roman Catholic liturgy. I have long awaited this essential resource."
Kimberly Belcher, Professor of Liturgical Studies, University of Notre Dame

"There are many fine study Bibles and there are many fine commentaries on the liturgical year but the Liturgy and Life Study Bible is a unique and truly remarkable achievement. Combining first-rate biblical scholarship with insight into how the Scriptures have been used in liturgy as well as helpful indications of where biblical passages appear in the liturgy, this study Bible will serve a generation of serious Bible readers as an aide to prayerful reading (lectio divina) as well as to a deeper appreciation of God’s holy Word. It should be absent from no preacher’s bookshelf."
John F. Baldovin, SJ, Professor of Historical and Liturgical Theology, Boston College School of Theology and Ministry

"This book would be of value to any who are looking to deepen their understanding of how and when the Bible is used in liturgy."
Bible Today

"The Liturgy and Life Study Bible will serve as a useful reference work for liturgists, liturgical musicians, preachers, catechists, and anyone else who serves as a minister of the Word. It can also be a valuable guide for anyone seeking a deeper engagement with sacred Scripture through the rich experience of the Catholic liturgy, as well as in personal meditation and prayer."
U.S. Catholic

"This will be an excellent way to gain an overview of the use that is made of biblical passages within a liturgical context and thus how the Church has interpreted them. The Liturgy and Life Study Bible is a fine addition to the range of bibles available today."
The Downside Review

"The scale of the work is very impressive, and it will be an important resource, particularly for preachers and those who lead liturgical services. This is comprehensive and detailed work: a phenomenal resource."
Pastoral Liturgy

“A remarkable resource and certainly something that every preacher should have close to him as he’s preparing his homily.”
Cardinal Arthur Roche, Vatican Chief Liturgist

"The scale of the work is very impressive, and it will be an important resource, particularly for preachers and those who lead liturgical services. Clergy and others should certainly be aware of this phenomenal book."
The Pastoral Review