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Saturday, July 23, 2011

The next three...

A plethora of commitments prevented me from posting the rest of my reviews; however, now that I have some time, here are the comments for those versions of the Roman Missal that ranked fourth, fifth and sixth.

4. Midwest Theological Forum


Make no mistake about it, this is a gorgeous Roman Missal with impressive artwork.  The cover also resembles that of the Roman Missal used in Papal Masses.   Here is the sample artwork:

http://www.theologicalforum.org/books/RM/previewbook.asp?pi=432

Here is what the text looks like:


http://www.theologicalforum.org/books/Advent/previewbook.asp?pi=432


However, the reason why this version did not score as high on my list as that of WLP and the Magnificat is the price.  The regal edition of the MTF Roman Missal is a rather steep $500, with the classic edition coming in at $350.  The latter is rather steep, when one considers that the cover is made of faux leather.  For me, that is too much to pay, especially since, for that price, CTS offers its version of the Roman Missal with a genunine leather cover.  While the quality is impressive and the book a work of art on its own, the price may make it cost prohibitive for many parishes.  For those parishes that can afford it, this version of the Roman Missal would be a sound investment, indeed.


5. USCCB


This version of the Roman Missal, published by the USCCB, marks the conference's entrance into the field.  While the USCCB publishes the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (commonly known as the GIRM), this marks the first time, to my knowledge, that it is publishing the actual Roman Missal.


The cover is rather handsome, and one of the best renderings of Our Lord that I have seen.  However, when I took a virtual tour of the inside of the book, I was somewhat disappointed.  All of the artwork comes from the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.   Not that this is a bad thing, but, some of the shrine's artwork is a bit harsh.  The other caveat was the use of sans serif in the titles. 

Here is a sampling of the pages:

http://www.usccb.org/romanmissal/RM-Sample-pages-spread_3-28-11.pdf

It's a good effort, on the part of the USCCB, but, it just does not seem to come across as excellently as the CTS or the Magnificat. 

The USCCB edition of the Roman Missal runs at $169 for the Ritual Edition and $115 for the Chapel version. 


6.  Liturgical Training Press

LTP specializes in printing all things liturgical, thus, it was only natural that it, too, would join the pack in publishing its own rendition of the Roman Missal.


Unlike the other versions of the Roman Missal previously reviewed, LTP features original artwork.  This particular style resembles Medieval woodcuts.  It's actually quite decent; however, it is rather spartan in that it is all done in black, white and red.  The red, however, might be a little jarring in some cases.  Here is a sample:

http://www.ltp.org/resources/RM3RE_INTart.pdf

Nonetheless, the artwork is good.  The actual text and music is laid out quite nicely:

http://www.ltp.org/resources/RM3RE_INT.pdf

LTP retains the use of serifs all throughout the layout, which is easy on the eyes.  Like several of the other Roman Missals, LTP also uses acid-free archival paper that is designed to last a very long time.

The Altar version is priced at $175.  Interestingly enough, LTP is also distributing the MTF Classic Edition of the Roman Missal.  I did not see a price listed for the Chapel Edition.

The final two reviews will be forthcoming.

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