2022 Summer School: Trier, Germany

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Understanding the Bible from the Liturgy
May 16 - July 1, 2022 | Trier Germany

Starting May 16, 2022, a summer school will take place in Trier designed for American students with the topic "Understanding the Bible from the Liturgy." It is centered on a 3-credit course on this topic taught in English, and will include opportunities to study German and participate in field trips to important sites for biblical studies (Mainz with the Gutenberg-Bible) and for liturgical studies (Maria Laach), but also Cologne and Aachen. Even if a student does not need the credits, but wants to learn or improve German, it will be a great experience.

The costs are low in order to enable many students to participate (thanks to the contributions of the German Liturgical Institute, and may be even lower if requestd funding is approved). 

Costs for tuition and housing in Trier (at St. Joseph’s sisters in the city center with garden)

  • Tuition (incl. study trips) and single room with bathroom: ca. $2,890 (= $58 / night)
  • Tuition (incl. study trips) and single room; bathrooms shared with the other American students:ca. $2,190 (= $44 / night)
    • Breakfast and public transportation in Trier are included. Other meals can easily be found in thecity or at the university (with student discount).
    • Funding has been requested from the German Academic Exchange Service, which will reduce the costssignificantly and cover the travel costs from the US, if the grant is approved.

Course description: “Understanding the Bible from the Liturgy” (3 credits)

Professors: Dr. Marco Benini (liturgy, Trier; taught 6 semesters at CUA), with some classes by Dr. Stefanos Alexopoulos (liturgy, CUA), Dr. Hans-Georg Gradl (NT, Trier), and Dr. Carolin Neuber (OT, Trier)

"Sacred Scripture is of the greatest importance in the celebration of the liturgy." (SC 24). The Bible shapes the liturgy like no other book: OT and NT readings are intertextually combined. Psalms are often specifically chosen. Prayers and hymns are biblically permeated. Liturgical actions and symbols (e.g., the washing of feet on Holy Thursday, baptismal rites, etc.) are inspired by sacred Scripture. At the same time, the liturgy interprets sacred Scripture and makes the Bible, a written echo of the revelation, to the living Word of God, whom we encounter in the liturgy. The reception of Scripture (e.g., according to the literary reception theory) is part of the active participation in the liturgy.

The course explores the rich relationships between Bible and liturgy. The first part examines liturgical elements within the OT and NT. The second part discusses the various ways in which liturgy uses Scripture (cf. SC 24). The course finally pays attention to systematic-theological dimensions of the liturgical hermeneutics of Scripture. The whole course promotes an interdisciplinary dialogue of liturgical and biblical studies and considers pastoral implications in the current challenges and opportunities for the Church (pandemic etc.).

Assigned readings for each class are in English (additional ones in German and other languages are optional).
In the place of the final exam students will submit a research paper on a topic related to the course. An official transcript in German and English will be provided. That will facilitate the transfer of credits.

How to apply:

  • Please send your application (CV, letter of intent, recommendation letter from your professor) to benini@uni-trier.de by October 31, 2021 (please also specify your preference for the housing options. The number of rooms are limited).
  • The application will be reviewed by the professors Stefanos Alexopoulos (CUA), Hans-Georg Gradl (Trier), and Marco Benini (Trier). We will reply to all applicants by November 15, 2021 and invite the chosen students to a Zoom-meeting to provide further information on practical steps.


For any questions please contact: benini@cua.edu