Catholic Jews


First of all, I apologize if this isn’t in the right forum, but I don’t know exactly under what this falls under.

I was recently reading Mike Aquilina’s The Mass of the Early Christians and one of my greatest questions - how the Eucharist originated - was answered. I have always wondered if the Mass had any precedent or if it was something completely new; the question as to why bread and wine was used was also a part of that question. From this book I learned that the Liturgy is not something novel, but is rooted in Jewish liturgy, thus maintaining a certain continuity. As for the use of bread and wine, it seems that there was already a precedent for blessing bread and wine (there is a specific name for such a ritual in the jewish tradition, only I don’t have the book with me now to look it up).

Anyway, I got to thinking after this and another question came into my head, something which I am surprised that I had never thought of, being that it is so obvious. Most of the first Christians were Jews (if I’m not mistaken, Christianity is supposed to be understood as the natural “evolution” of a fulfilled Judeaism (sp?)). It should stand to reason then that there still exist Catholic Jews (i.e., Catholics of Jewish ancestry). Where can I find information about them, about their rites and traditions, etc.?


Well, the Mass is nothing new at all, neither, though, was it around during the time of Christ our the Apostles.

The Eucharist was, of course, instituted by Our Lord at the Last Supper. (If I could, I would suggest you looking into “Doors to the Sacred” It covers the sacraments, their history, and how the very idea of sacraments aren’t something unique to Christianity).

See, in the early Church, folks would go the Synagogue, and then retire to a communal breaking of the bread and wine. However, after the destruction of Jersusalem in 70 AD, Christianity became further seperated from its Jewish roots. It had long been underground, but it would gradually grow more distict over the next thousand years. by the 11th century, things were already set up, with priests and the laity in their respective roles.

And that is, sadly, all I remember now. I heartily suggest you look into the book (Though be wary of the authors leftist leanings!)


With Passover coming up, see if you can find a Seder done by and for Christians in your area. Perhaps your church or one in the area is doing it. It is so perfect to attend a Seder on the late afternoon/early evening of Holy Thursday, doing exactly what Jesus did at His last Supper.

My wife and I did this at home for many years with our children, so that when we went to Holy Thursday Mass, the readings and washing of the feet were just a continuation of what we’d done at home. We even made our own matzahs - that was an event with three young children! They even fought to see who would get to ask the Four Questions, traditionally asked by the youngest at the table.

From this our kids were able to see the close connection between the Seder and the Mass we have today. I’m sure you can find sources online with the readings, direction and suggestions for food. Have lamb for dinner is a definite plus!


If you google ‘Jewish Christians’ you’ll find what you’re looking for :wink:

#5 (Site for Jewish Catholics, has info and a page of conversion stories) (Rosalind Moss, speaker for Catholic Answers, born Jewish) (Number 20 is the audio of a Jewish convert to Catholicism)

Hope this helps.

Or did you mean like the Melkite Catholics, who are Byzantine Rite, with their origins in Syria/Lebanon/Israel?


I thought that Catholics with origins in the Israel/Lebanon/Syria would have their own rite, sort of like other Eastern Churches, perhaps even in Hebrew. I was also curious as to if they still uphold the Law. I came across a blog which seems to emply that they still do uphold most Jewish customs. There’s even an entry there somewhere about Pope Benedict XIV saying that kosher laws could be “imposed” on the Church if the Church understood them to be spiritually beneficial (though I don’t think the guy cites his sources).

BTW: thanks for the help so far


Interesting: Hebrew Catholics


Another question. How would I learn more about Judaism’s understanding of ‘the Messiah’? :o


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