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The Grail Code: Quest for the Real Presence [Paperback]

By Mike Aquilina (Author) & Christopher Bailey (Author)
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Item description for The Grail Code: Quest for the Real Presence by Mike Aquilina & Christopher Bailey...

From medieval Christian piety to contemporary popular culture, the authors provide an intriguing historical study of the lore that arose around the Holy Grail.

Publishers Description
The real mystery is the Real Presence "The Grail Code satisfies the hunger that people have for knowledge of this mystery. The true Grail bears witness to a divine gift that exceeds even the deepest human longing."
--Scott Hahn, author of "The Lamb's Supper "and "Hail, Holy Queen" The Holy Grail stories possess a mysterious power that has seized the human imagination for centuries. They tell of a great secret finally revealed, of a surprising answer to the most profound questions, of a hidden mystery that satisfies our deepest longings. Writers, poets, artists, composers, and filmmakers have pursued the Grail for 1,700 years. The great quest drives the legends of King Arthur, propels Indiana Jones's greatest adventure, and keeps many people turning the pages of "The Da Vinci Code."
These tales of quests and miracles and of honor and betrayal have capti-vated humankind for so long, say the authors of "The Grail Code," because the stories really do touch the deepest parts of our hearts. They reveal our innate yearning to know Christ, to be in communion with the Divine. What we've lost in the pop-culture transformations of the Grail is what made it holy in the first place: the intimate link with the Eucharist.
"The Grail Code "is a literary and theological detective story, centuries in the making, that ends where the Grail legends began--in the room where Jesus gathered his closest friends for the last time, spoke blessed words, broke bread, and shared a sacred cup.

Citations And Professional Reviews
The Grail Code: Quest for the Real Presence by Mike Aquilina & Christopher Bailey has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • Publishers Weekly - 03/13/2006 page 62

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Loyola Press
Pages   241
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.1" Width: 6.4" Height: 0.68"
Weight:   0.7 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   May 1, 2006
Publisher   Loyola Press
ISBN  0829421599  
ISBN13  9780829421590  

Availability  0 units.

More About Mike Aquilina & Christopher Bailey

Mike Aquilina Mike Aquilina is author or editor of more than forty books on Catholic history, doctrine, and devotion. He is Vice-president of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology.

He is co-host, with Scott Hahn, of eight series that air on EWTN. For many years he also appeared as a regular panelist on “The Weekly Roman Observer,” broadcast by Catholic Familyland Network. He is a frequent guest on Catholic radio and appears weekly on EWTN’s “Sonrise Morning Show.”

Mike’s career in publishing spans three decades, and hundreds of his articles have appeared in periodicals and journals in the United States and abroad.

In 2011 he was a featured presenter of the U.S. Bishops’ Diocesan Educational/Catechetical Leadership Institute, an online formation program co-sponsored with the National Catholic Education Association and the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership. He also wrote the USCCB’s theological reflection for Catechetical Sunday in 2011.

Mike Aquilina currently resides in Pittsburgh Pittsburgh.

Mike Aquilina has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Faith Charts
  2. Year with

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Church History > General
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Church History
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Fiction & Poetry
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Jesus > Historical Jesus
6Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Spirituality > General
7Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Spirituality

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Church Life > Roman Catholic

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Reviews - What do customers think about The Grail Code: Quest for the Real Presence?

Fascinating and engaging  Mar 20, 2008
Our family homeschools, and we're wandering through the Middle Ages this year. I just finished reading The Grail Code and then stayed up too late to finish wandering around the website ([...]) which is full of fascinating stuff, including links on their Scriptorium page to the texts that are discussed and quoted in the book.

Did you know you can read the old French original of Chretien de Troyes' "Lancelot, or, The Knight of the Cart," if you so choose? (Alas, if only I were able to so choose. The only French I remember from high school is "Ou est la salle de bain?" A vital phrase, oui, but limited. But I digress.)

The Scriptorium page of their website alone is worth a look, even if you skip the book. But, don't skip the book -- I learned volumes about the Grail, its origins and its chroniclers.

The website also whet my appetite for more Grail art and Aquilina and Bailey will even help you out with "How to Pronounce Those Impossible Welsh Names."

I admit that my Grail-Lancelot-Arthur knowledge is fairly limited. I have a passing-to-average acquaintance with Camelot (enough to know that I don't picture Lancelot as Robert Goulet.) I knew about Malory, of course, and we have a few books that I rounded up for the kids this year. I first read T.H. White's "The Once and Future King" when I was in high school, and loved it dearly.

What The Grail Code offered me, though, on top of fascinating lore and legend, was a great historical look at the rise and fall of the story and the world's enduring fascination with it. The authors' quest takes us through the Grail's sacred beginnings, into periods of secular, cultish appeal, traces why and how those changes happened, and finally, routes us back to what the Grail really means:

What (or Who) is our quest really about? What makes us thirst so, and how is that thirst quenched?

When my daughter asked me what I was reading, I gave her a short teaser version, and she said, "Wow ... searching for the cup ... that would make a great story!"

Ahem. Clearly, I've not covered Arthur with her in any depth (and she's never seen the Indiana Jones movie, either.)

I might just hand her "The Grail Code" and let her know that her quest is about to begin.
Love, sex, God, swordplay  Dec 20, 2006
One of my favorite books this year, Grail Code is the thoughtful answer to a question that has been on my mind for years, well before Dan Brown unleashed the merchandising behemoth that The Da Vinci Code became: namely, what is the core of the Arthur/Grail stories, and how do we understand the relationship of these stories to Christian culture? Mike Aquilina and Chris Bailey have done a bang-up job with this book. It's fun, with mock arthurian stylings in its chapter heads and allusions to such popular treatments as the 1981 John Boorman film Excalibur and 1989's Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

Aquilina and Bailey highlight the changing contours of the legends in the hands of men like Chretien de Troyes, Walter Map, Sir Thomas Malory, and Alfred Lord Tennyson. They've turned the history of these romances into an engaging intellectual romance; they pull the reader in to a world that is much larger than he could ever have imagined. Aquilina and Bailey capture the sense of yearning that is the strong undercurrent of these stories. They liken the tale to a jewel-encrusted relic, a tale that grew in reverent retelling. Christian theology, British history, romance and adultery, this is a wide-ranging, romping read.
What I Expected and More  Oct 1, 2006
Having taken a course in Grail legends in college (so many years ago that the professor quite possibly knew Arthur), I was curious to see what the author's take would be on this vast subject. Mr. Aquilina calmly surpassed my expectations.

This book is a concise and lilting journey through the various stages of the growth of the Arthurian legends. I was happy to see the author include aspects of the myriad authors that were left out of the college course I took. Mr. Aquilina uncovered the yearning for the meaning of life and ultimate destiny in the legends that was missing from my class. Perhaps because my professor came was a self-proclaimed Anglophile (although he didn't take milk and cream with his Earl Grey), he missed the piercing Catholic underpinnings of the legends that were the foundation of the quest.

Mr. Aquilina was able, in relatively few pages to weave the nuances and intracacies of humanity's search for reason and belief in and out of the various Grail legends throughout history. I was pleased to be re-introduced to so many storytellers who I spent long nights with (usually right before exams) and to see them from a refreshingly new angle. It was like meeting an old friend whose memory has been distorted by the years. You see them as new creatures, filling in the details with new colors and textures. For me, The Grail Code completed the image in my mind of the legends, the history and the characters that mottle our literary landscape even today.

This book came to be a gem for me. I look forward to reading it again soon.

Thank you, Mr. Aquilina. It's been a pleasure.

A Moving Journey  Jun 30, 2006
It is unfortunate that The Grail Code will be seen by some merely as a work refuting The DaVinci Code. Such a misunderstanding might lead readers grown tired of the Dan Brown controversy to overlook it. In truth, the Grail Code is far more than another refutation of the dreadful novel. It is a superb account of the history and meaning of the Holy Grail. A must-read for those interested in the history of medieval literature.
Perfect overview of True Grail  Jun 25, 2006
In a world that is searching for a mestery and other explinations for the Grail, this book puts it all in perspective. Clear and concise writing along with scriptural refeance makes this the perfect book for those seeking the True Grail. Debunks many of the myths and misconceptions about the Grail and what it is. I recomend this for everyone who found to many flaws in the argument presented in The DaVinci Code.

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