Before the Dawn: Autobiographical Reflections by Eugenio Zolli, Former Chief Rabbi of Rome
This is the remarkable and inspiring story of how the famous and revered Chief Rabbi of Rome, Israel Zolli, became a Christian and entered the Catholic Church after World War II. Zolli was a world renowned Jewish leader and Scripture & Talmudic scholar, and an authority on Semitic philology.
This classic work outlines the spiritual journey of Rabbi Zolli, through prayer, Scripture meditation and lived experience, from devout Judaism to Catholicism, and it stands as a wonderful testament to the spirit of man which is always restless until it rests fully in Christ Jesus. He did not abandon his Jewish heritage, but says he discovered the fullness of what God offered in Jesus and His Church. Zolli took the Christian name of Eugenio to honor Pope Pius XII (Eugenio was his baptismal name) for all he did to save Jews during WWII.
The highlights of his spiritual journey are covered in this book along with some marvelous insights by Rabbi Zolli on Judaism, mysticism, the Law, and the Gospel. Zolli speaks of his journey not as a betrayal of the Synagogue but as a completion and fulfillment, describing himself as becoming a "completed Jew" by recognizing Jesus Christ ("Rabbi Yeshua") as the Messiah and joining His Church. Zolli offers unique insights on the continuity between the Synagogue and the Catholic Church and many interesting insights into the Scriptures—including the New Testament—from an Orthodox Jewish perspective.