The Great Adventure of the Greatest Story Ever Told

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When I first moved back to New Jersey from Brooklyn five years ago, a group of women in my parish were gearing up to start a Bible study program they’d heard about. I was looking for community, and they had kids my kids’ ages, so I readily joined. I had no idea how much of a game changer the eight meetings we had together would be — for both our friendships and for my experience of the Mass.

The program was Jeff Cavins’ The Great Adventure Bible study program (what I later learned was the short version). A former Protestant minister, Cavins converted to Catholicism in large part because, when he dug deeply into Scripture, he discovered how much of the Mass is drawn right from those texts. Needless to say, he has a tremendous love for the Church and for God’s Word. In his presentations, Cavins is intelligent and approachable.

Through a series of DVDs and discussions, our group looked at 14 books of the Bible that form a linear storyline. Cavins also divides salvation history into twelve color-coded time periods with snazzy names to help you remember them. The idea is that you read through these 14 books and get the basic chronology of salvation history, and then you can fit any other reading in the entire Bible into context by checking which time period it falls in. We had a laminated timeline, a more condensed bookmark, and even a bracelet with pony beads to help us remember the colors (slash keep our kids occupied while we talked Scripture).

As we worked through the program, my experience of the Mass was drastically changed, so much so that the program is in the recommended reading at the end of my book. Things that used to be so obscure now had a place! There were still cultural differences and historical contexts I wasn’t familiar with, but I connected so many more of the pieces than I ever had before. The other women had a similar experience, to the point that our parish ran the extended version of the study a few years later.

The Bible opened up to me in a whole new way. I can’t recommend The Great Adventure strongly enough, and I am so beyond thrilled that the program is now incorporated into the Bible itself.

The Great Adventure Catholic Bible has everything you need, all in one place — no pony beads required! The pages are color-coded at the edges, and there are descriptions of the timeline and key points throughout. It’s beautifully crafted, with two ribbons (I love ribbons!), legible text, and bright colors. I love the 90-day program up front that guides you through those 14 books, so that the rest falls into place in short order.

 

The work that Cavins and his team have done is invaluable to the Catholic world. That this program is now worked into an edition of the Bible is huge and such a gift. If you don’t know where to start with the Bible, or you just want to dig in deeper, buy a copy of this Bible. Make that two or three, since you’re going to want to give one to everyone you know.

What’s your favorite fun fact about the Bible? Mine — that I learned from The Great Adventure — is that when God told Abraham, “count the stars, if you are able … So shall your descendants be,” it was daytime! Abraham couldn’t even see the stars. God was asking him to trust in what he couldn’t physically see. And Abraham did! 

Share your favorite Bible bit below! 

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Copyright 2018 Lindsay Schlegel
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About Author

Lindsay Schlegel is a daughter of God who seeks to encourage, inspire, and lift up the contemporary woman to be all she was created to be. She's the author of Don't Forget to Say Thank You: And Other Parenting Lessons That Brought Me Closer to God, a CatholicMom.com book, as well as shorter nonfiction and fiction pieces, both online and in print. With joy, she speaks about recognizing God's voice and living the truth therein. Lindsay lives in New Jersey with her high-school-sweetheart-turned-husband and their kids. Connect with her at LindsaySchlegel.com or on Instagram @lindsayschlegs.

1 Comment

  1. Prov31wannabe on

    Abraham and the stars and it was daytime is my favorite take-away, too! Thanks for this review. I have been amazed/dismayed by the number of clerks/owners at bookstores (Catholic and Christian) who seem befuddled by this new bible, its title, its existence. This bible comes up everywhere in my radar, yet I have not purchased one yet. I already have 19 bibles in the household and I’m not sure about taking the number to 20. One store owner thought the “adventure” part of the title meant it was a children’s book. I remember the bookmark and pony beads from when our parish had a small study on it, too. I will be reconsidering adding this to our collection. And btw, hello from one knitter to another. I like to make prayer shawls, among many other projects.

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