Jerome Murphy-O'Connor

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Reverend Dr Jerome Murphy-O'Connor, O.P. (born 10 April 1935, Cork City, Ireland – died 11 November 2013, Jerusalem) was a Dominican priest, a leading authority on St. Paul and Professor of New Testament at the École Biblique in Jerusalem, a position that he held from 1967 until his death.[1]


He was born James Murphy-O'Connor in 1935 to Kerry and Mary (née McCrohan) Murphy-O'Connor, the eldest of four siblings. A cousin is Cormac Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor, the 10th Archbishop of Westminster.[2] Murphy-O'Connor attended the Christian Brothers College (Cork), and later attending the Vincentian-run Castleknock College in Dublin, where he decided to become a Dominican priest. He entered the Dominican novitiate in Cork in September 1953, giving up his baptismal to take a new name in religion, "Jerome". After the novitiate he studied Philosophy for a year before studying at Dominican Studium in Tallaght and at the University of Fribourg in Switzerland.[3] He was ordained as a priest in July 1960. In Fribourg, the core of his scholarly life emerged, his first serious study as a lecturer being on the theme of Preaching in Saint Paul, which was later developed into a doctoral thesis.[3]

École Biblique[edit]

He received his Doctorate in 1962. In 1963 he studied in Rome, and researched the Dead Sea Scrolls at the University of Heidelberg, and New Testament theology at the University of Tübingen. From there he went to Jerusalem to the École Biblique, which was to become his religious, scholarly and even personal home for the next forty years. Jerusalem and Israel were to become the centre of his life and work. The École Biblique, founded in 1890 by French Dominican scholars, is an internationally renowned centre for Biblical studies and Biblical archaeology. He remained there for the rest of his life, having been appointed Professor of New Testament in 1967.[3] He received honorary degrees in the US and Australia, but particularly treasured the doctorate of literature conferred in 2002 by the National University of Ireland in University College Cork.[4]

Oxford University Press invited him to write an archaeological guide to the Holy Land which was published in 1980. This was translated into several languages with a revised edition in 1986, and has become the standard guide-book. Murphy-O'Connor lectured around the world and made numerous television appearances,[4] including in Le Mystère Paul (2000), Jesus: The Complete Story (2001), The Search for John the Baptist (2005), The Lost Tomb of Jesus (2007), and Christianity: A History for Channel 4 (2009).[5][6]

Select publications[edit]

  • 1 Corinthians, Bible Reading Fellowship; ISBN 0-7459-3280-0 (0-7459-3280-0)
  • Becoming Human Together: The Pastoral Anthropology of St. Paul, Veritas Publications; ISBN 0-89453-075-5 (0-89453-075-5)
  • Colossians, Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd.; ISBN 0-7220-0558-X (0-7220-0558-X)
  • The Holy Land: An Oxford Archaeological Guide from Earliest Times to 1700, Oxford Univ Press;, ISBN 0-19-923666-6 (0-19-923666-6)
  • Jesus and Paul: Parallel Lives, St Paul Publications; ISBN 1-921032-35-9 (1-921032-35-9)
  • Paul, co-authored by Laurence Bright, Henry Wansbrough and Jerome Murphy-O'Connor, Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd.; ISBN 0-7220-0671-3 (0-7220-0671-3)
  • Paul: A Critical Life, Oxford University Press, Inc.; ISBN 0-19-826749-5 (0-19-826749-5)
  • Paul and Qumran: Studies in New Testament Exegesis, Continuum International Publishing Group, Ltd; ISBN 0-225-27548-1 (0-225-27548-1)
  • Paul and the Dead Sea Scrolls, James H. Charlesworth Crossroad Publishing Company; ISBN 0-8245-1000-3 (0-8245-1000-3)
  • Paul: His Story, Oxford University Press; ISBN 0-19-928384-2 (0-19-928384-2)
  • More editions of Paul: His Story: Paul II, co-authored by Jerome Murphy-O'Connor, Laurence Bright and Henry Wansbrough, Acta Pubns, ISBN 0-87946-010-5 (0-87946-010-5)
  • Paul the Letter-Writer: His World, His Options, His Skills, Michael Glazier Books; ISBN 0-8146-5845-8 (0-8146-5845-8)
  • St. Paul's Corinth: Texts and Archaeology, Liturgical Press; ISBN 0-8146-5303-0 (0-8146-5303-0)
  • The Theology of the Second Letter to the Corinthians, co-authored by Jerome Murphy-O'Connor and James D. G. Dunn, Cambridge University Press; ISBN 0-521-35898-1 (0-521-35898-1)


External links[edit]