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Book Launch Celebration for Rev. Dr. Eugen Pentiuc

Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, in conjunction with École Biblique et Archéologique Française in Jerusalem, warmly invites the entire HCHC community to Dowd Hall on Sunday, November 19, at 1pm to celebrate the publication of Fr. Pentiuc’s latest book, Hosea: The Word of the Lord that Happened to Hosea, forthcoming from Peeters Publishers. Fr. Pentiuc is Professor of Old Testament and Hebrew at Holy Cross and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. Representatives from Peeters and from École Biblique will join us for this joyful event.

The new monograph on the Book of Hosea, published under the auspices of the famous biblical school, École Biblique et Archéologique Française in Jerusalem, under the meticulous direction of Fr. Olivier-Thomas Venard, O.P., represents the tireless work of a group of international biblical scholars, with Fr. Eugen J. Pentiuc as main author and team leader. Hosea is the second volume, after Philippians (Peeters, 2016), to appear in the newly created B.E.S.T. (acronym for La Bible en Ses Traditions/The Bible in Its Traditions) series recently launched by École Biblique in Jerusalem.

The B.E.S.T. continues a long tradition of École Biblique, which created the first Study Bible, La Bible de Jérusalem (Cerf, 1956), also known as The New Jerusalem Bible. The new digital Study Bible offers the modern reader a fresh scriptural translation based on the Old Greek (Septuagint and second-century A.D. Jewish translations), Hebrew (Qumran and Masoretic), Syriac (Peshitta), and Latin (Vulgate) texts, accompanied by a wide variety of study notes divided into three sections: text, context, and reception. These notes cover various interpretive aspects: from mere textual, lexical, and literary glosses to sophisticated Jewish and Christian patristic and liturgical commentaries and theological treatises, and further including modern and secular forms of scriptural usage (e.g., literature, visual arts, music, dance, cinema and television, etc.).

The layout for each volume in this series (for a sample of the Hosea volume layout, click here) attempts to imitate the Medieval Glossa Ordinaria (“Standard Gloss”), consisting of patristic annotations placed in the margins of the Latin Vulgate of Jerome. This ingenious layout emphasizes the polyphonic centrality of the biblical text as well as the irreducibility of the rich and multifaceted interpretations that the former has generated in various communities of faith throughout the centuries.

In the Introduction to this volume, commenting on Fr. Pentiuc’s contribution, Fr. Olivier-Thomas Venard, O.P., B.E.S.T. Executive Director, remarked, “The impulse given to our work by Professor Eugen J. Pentiuc, an internationally recognized West Semitist (Pentiuc 2001), has brought to the present writing its clearly philological contour, perseverance in formulating historical hypotheses throughout Hosea’s ancient prophecies (Pentiuc 2002), and an emphasis on the present-day relevance of Hosea’s teaching on the true personality of God, whose intimacy with the human being went even to the Incarnation (Pentiuc 2006).”

Dr. James C. Skedros, Dean of Holy Cross, noted, “During four working summers between 2010 and 2016 as ‘researcher-in-residence’ at École Biblique in Jerusalem, Fr. Pentiuc, an internationally recognized biblical scholar and Semitist, has proved one more time his refreshing creativity, deep erudition, and passionate love for the Word of God. With this ecumenical-in-scope publication, Fr. Pentiuc has brought great honor to Holy Cross and to Orthodox biblical scholarship. Thank you, Fr. Eugen, for your tireless work and genuine dedication to our school!”

Here are some useful links for those who want to know more about this remarkable Study Bible project, already hailed as “the Bible of the twenty-first century”:

The official website of the B.E.S.T. Project

“The Ecole Biblique (B.E.S.T.)”

“Invitation by Olivier-Thomas Venard, O.P. to the Two Orthodox Seminaries in the USA”

Eugen J. Pentiuc, “The Book of Hosea: From Iron Age to the Digital Age” (Talk at the Scripture and Theology 2017 Colloquium, Wycliffe College at the University of Toronto)

Eugen J. Pentiuc, “Introducing the B.E.S.T. Digital Study Bible Project”