The Fraternity of St. Peter has brought out a new EF Breviary to replace their previous out-of-print version. The improvement is so great that it inspires outrageous hyperboles, such as: Comparing this new Breviary to the old one is like comparing a 2009 Mazarati to a 1929 Model A Roadster, like comparing dinner at Antoine’s to lunch at MacDonald’s, like comparing a penthouse to a tenement, like comparing a . . . I could go on, but you surely get the idea by now.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said that comparisons are odious, and I usually agree, but this case demands that I make an exception. The previous Breviary is out of print and unavailable, so an uncomplimentary comparison hurts no one. It was published rather quickly in 1995 to satisfy a serious need within the Fraternity of St. Peter for a 1962 Breviary. It was copied rather than type-set and, although generally clear, it has a few blurred letters scattered about. And it has 176 errors (69 in Volume I, 107 in Volume II), most small, but a few rather significant. (These have been listed in the FSSP Ordo so Breviary users could correct them.) Then, too, each volume is huge: Volume I has 1,870 pages and is two inches thick; volume II has 1,620 pages and is 1.7 inches thick. As you probably know, the Breviary has long been called a priest’s “wife,” because he takes it with him wherever he goes. In this case, clearly, the lady needed to shed a few pounds and inches.
Well, she has. The new Breviary is slim and sleek. Volume I, which contains the Offices from the first Sunday of Advent through the first Vespers for the Sunday after Pentecost, has 1,725 pages and is only 1.3 inches thick. Volume II, which contains the Offices from the first Sunday after Pentecost through 24th Sunday after Pentecost, has 1,480 pages and is only 1.1 inches thick. How did she shed this bulk? First, she relies somewhat more on referencing and less on reprinting repetitively-used parts. Second, she has slightly smaller print. However, since it is type-set rather than copied, it is much clearer and more pleasant to read.
[Nota bene: Whether by chance or design, each volume of this slimmed-down Breviary is the about same size as the Angelus Press hand-held 1962 Daily Roman Missal. Thus each volume fits nicely into the zippered vinyl slipcover made for that missal. This slipcover provides 24/7 protection, because the Breviary need never be removed from the slipcover. To say the Office, one simply unzips the slipcover, reads from the Breviary without removing the slipcover, and then zips it up again. This protects the Breviary cover from all sorts of abuse, and especially from the damage skin-oil from the user’s hands can inflict. These slipcovers, which come in black, dark blue, or burgundy, cost $19.95 each and are available from Angelus Press: website www.angeluspress.org; 1 (800) 966-7337. By spending $19.95, you can preserve the covers of a $298 Breviary.]
This new Breviary has also cleaned up her act, so to speak, in that she isn’t replete with errors. In my consciously nit-picky large-sample search for the above mentioned 176 errors, I found only one in this new Breviary. If she has any errors, at least they’re new ones!
Like most Breviaries, this new one has a set of cards for certain parts of the Office that are repeated every day – Psalm 94 (Matins), Absolutiones and Benedictiones (Matins), Te Deum (Matins), Canticum Zachariae (Lauds), Magnificat (Vespers), and Antiphona Finalis Beatae Mariae Virginis (Compline). However this Breviary has two sets of these cards, a set for each volume, containing the Volume-appropriate final Marian Antiphones for Compline. The cards for Volume I contains Alma Redemptoris Mater, Ave Regina Caelorum, and Regina Caeli Laetare. The cards for Volume II contains only Salve Regina. Each set includes two special cards. One contains the Psalms for Sunday Lauds, which are often used on special 2nd and 3rd Class Feasts regardless of the day on which they fall, and certain prayers said during the Octave of Easter. The other contains the O Antiphones said from December 17 to 23 and antiphones said during the Octave of Easter.
The new Breviary also comes with a small instructional pamphlet with a long title: “Pocket Guide for the Recitation of the Divine Office According to the 1962 Edition of the Breviarium Romanum.” The 21 pages in this pamphlet contain much useful information, especially for beginners.
Who should have this Breviary? Obviously, any priest, religious, or layman who says the EF Divine Office in Latin would benefit from it – provided that he uses the Vulgate Psalter. If he uses the Pius XII Psalter, he would be uncomfortable with some of the translations into Latin in this Breviary. If you or your EF Community would like to buy a copy for any priest who says the Divine Office in Latin, first check to be sure that he uses the Vulgate Psalter.
Your EF Community also should consider chipping in to buy one of these Breviaries for a seminarian at one of the EF seminaries where the Vulgate Psalter is used. These Breviaries are so expensive that many seminarians simply cannot afford them. Such a gift from your EF Community would be most sincerely appreciated.
If you buy one, whether for yourself, your priest, or a seminarian, you should also buy one or two zippered slipcovers for it from Angelus Press (see above). Anyone can get by with just one slipcover by always keeping it on whichever volume he is currently using. However, a separate slipcover for each of the two volumes is more convenient, and, hey, they cost only $19.95 apiece. An extra $39.90 isn’t much of an addition to the $298 financial/spiritual investment you’re making in the Breviary itself. So why not spring for a pair of these slipcovers?
Copyright, 2009, by James B. Spencer. First Serial Rights
Just Some Fun
You Won't Believe What I Saw On the Side of a Bus
There is an organization in the U.K. that has been running placards on the sides of London buses promoting atheism. They've even provided an online tool to generate your own atheist messages onto one of their bus photos.
Humorously enough, Christians everywhere are indeed doing just that....with a change of message.
Good One Liners
- Be fishers of men….You catch ‘em, He’ll clean them.
- A family altar can alter a family - Give God what’s right, not what’s left.
- A lot of kneeling will keep one in good standing.
- Don’t out a question mark where God put a period.
- Don’t wait for 6 strong men to take you to church.
- Give Satan an inch and he’ll be a ruler –
- Having truth decay? Brush up on your Bible!
- God doesn’t call the qualified; He qualifies the called.
- He who can stand before God can stand before anyone.
- Most people want to serve God, but only in an advisory capacity.
- Plan ahead – it wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark.
- Prayer – don’t give God instructions – just report for duty!
- This church is “prayer conditioned.” - We’re too blessed to be depressed.
- Wisdom has 2 parts: 1) having a lot to say. 2) Not saying it.
- Some people are kind, polite and sweet-spirited, until you try to sit in their pews.
- Some minds are like concrete, thoroughly mixed up and permanently set.
- It is easier to preach ten sermons than to live one.
- People are funny – they want the front of the bus, the middle of the road and the back of the church.
- Opportunity may knock once, but temptation bangs on your door forever.
- If the church wants a better preacher or priest, it only needs to pray for the one it has.
- The phrase that is guaranteed to wake up an audience is “And in conclusion…..”
Evelyn C. Kraus Freund, Requiescant in Pace
The funeral mass was Friday, February 13th at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Colwich. The mass was beautiful and the toll bell was rung.
Please also pray for our friend Dan and his family as they journey through this most difficult time.
Survivors: husband, Edwin; sons, Dan (Becky) of Canton, Tim (Diana) of Mt. Hope; daughters, Carol Venegas of Wichita, Pat (Mark) Gilbert of Colwich; 10 grandchildren; 3 great-grandchildren (2 on the way). Memorials: Mt. Hope Nursing Center and Hospice of Kansas, 125 W. 2nd, Ste. C, Hutchinson, KS.
The Baltimore Cathechism
Lesson Twenty First: On Indulgences
231. Q. What is an Indulgence?
A. An Indulgence is the remission in whole or in part of the temporal punishment due to sin.
232. Q. Is an Indulgence a pardon of sin, or a license to commit sin?
A. An Indulgence is not a pardon of sin, nor a license to commit sin, and one who is in a state of mortal sin cannot gain an Indulgence.
233. Q. How many kinds of Indulgences are there?
A. There are two kinds of Indulgences-Plenary and Partial.
234. Q. What is a Plenary Indulgence?
A. A Plenary Indulgence is the full remission of the temporal punishment due to sin.
235. Q. What is a Partial Indulgence?
A. A Partial Indulgence is the remission of a part of the temporal punishment due to sin.
236. Q. How does the Church by means of Indulgences remit the temporal punishment due to sin?
A. The Church by means of Indulgences remits the temporal punishment due to sin by applying to us the merits of Jesus Christ, and the superabundant satisfactions of the Blessed Virgin Mary and of the saints; which merits and satisfactions are its spiritual treasury.
237. Q. What must we do to gain an Indulgence?
A. To gain an Indulgence we must be in the state of grace and perform the works enjoined.
Institute of Christ the King
First Pontifical High Mass at the Shrine of Christ The King, Chicago IL.
The New Liturgical Movement
The chant and polyphony were very well done, being performed by "participants of the Gregorian Chant Workshop for the Serious Students." They sang Victoria's Missa Magnum Mysterium.