Center for Catholic-Jewish Studies at Saint Leo Appoints New Director

July 20, 2015

Dr. Matthew A. Tapie has been appointed director of the Center for Catholic-Jewish Studies at Saint Leo University. He succeeds Dr. Michael Anthony Novak, who has served as interim director of the center for the last year.

Dr. Tapie comes to Saint Leo from The Catholic University of America, where he was a visiting professor of theology and religious studies and a research fellow at CUA’s Institute of Interreligious Study and Dialogue.

Saint Leo University Distinguished Visiting Professor of Theology Dr. Eugene Fisher, who was for several decades the associate director of the Secretariat for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, says of Dr. Tapie, “He is a very active leader in interreligious dialogue and comes highly recommended by scholars in the field, such as Peter Ochs and R. Kendall Soulen. His work brings together the positive developments in the new era of Jewish-Christian relations with some of the most influential pre-modern sources in Catholicism.”

Dr. Tapie earned a bachelor’s degree in theology and a Master of Divinity degree from Abilene Christian University. He also holds a Master of Arts in religion, politics, and society from Baylor University. Dr. Tapie has a doctorate in moral theology/ethics from The Catholic University of America. He is the author of Aquinas on Israel and the Church: A Study of the Question of Supersessionism in the Theology of Thomas Aquinas (Pickwick/Wipf & Stock, 2014), which was endorsed by University of California Berkeley history professor John Connelly, who referred to it as “a landmark contribution to the difficult work of reconciliation between Christians and Jews.” Dr. Tapie also is co-editor of Reading Scripture as a Political Act: Essays on the Theopolitical Interpretation of the Bible, due out in October (Fortress Press).

In addition to directing the center, Dr. Tapie, as an assistant professor of theology, will teach courses each year, beginning this fall with Christian Spiritual Vision, an introduction to the field of theology as an academic discipline.