Non-Catholic Bible Study

Q. I have some Catholic friends who have been going to a non-Catholic Bible study. Is there a problem with Catholics taking part in those? What if they can’t find a Catholic one in their parish?

A. Here’s a reply from TCA columnist Father Ray Ryland, Ph.D., J.D:

In one regard, the Bible is like any other book: It has to be interpreted. What do these sacred writings mean for my life? How one interprets the Bible (or any other writing) is determined by one’s presuppositions, one’s background. Non-Catholics necessarily bring non-Catholic (and often anti-Catholic) interpretations to their reading of Scripture. Your friends are bound to encounter error in discussions of Scripture with non-Catholics, and perhaps even be led astray thereby.

Your friends should ask their pastor to help them start a group for studying Scripture. An excellent source of materials for group study of the Bible is Dr. Scott Hahn’s St. Paul Center for Biblical Studies. One can find the Center’s extensive listings on their website. There are also many other Bible resources for Catholics, and perhaps you could ask your pastor or another trusted Catholic for advice.