Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Saint Benedict Press Gift Bibles Ship March 25th

Saint Benedict Press will be shipping their First Communion and Confirmation Gift Bibles on March 25th. These hardbound gift Bibles come in both the NAB and Douay-Rheims translations. What, no RSV? ;)

The NAB and Douay-Rheims First Communion editions include:

"Pages of colorful images, child-friendly stories on the lives of young Saints, daily Catholic prayers, including how to pray the Rosary, and explanations of the Seven Sacraments. This elegant edition also contains an explanation of the Mass and the complete Calendar of Sunday and Weekday Readings. The treasures discovered in this keepsake box will multiply the Graces received in the Sacrament of Holy Communion."

The NAB and Douay-Rheims Confirmation edition includes:

"Stories on the lives of young Saints, explanations of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, and well-known prayers written in English and Latin. This elegant edition also contains answers to teens’ top questions about Catholic moral teaching and the complete Calendar of Sunday and Weekday Readings. The treasures discovered in this keepsake box will multiply the Graces received in the Sacrament of Confirmation."

You can find both editions, available for pre-order, on the Saint Benedict Press website.


Daniel said...

Not really a comment about the St. Benedict Press Bibles...but I didn't see an email address for you. I am a diaconate candidate (to be ordained in 2 years or so) and I really want to find a version of the NRSV that has good trustworthy notes and other helpful study aids. I have heard the NRSV blotched the messianic aspect of the Psalms but I have never yet read the NRSV for personal prayer of study. Amnyway...any particular suggestion for an edition of the NRSV to buy? Thanks.

Timothy said...


There is currently no specifically Catholic study Bible edition of the NRSV. There are various ecumenical editions out there, most notably the New Oxford Annotated, the HarperCollins, and the New Interpreters. They all have their strengths and weakness, although lately I have been fairly happy, with only a few exceptions, with the newly published New Oxford Annotated Bible 4th Edition: http://catholicbibles.blogspot.com/2010/03/first-look-noab-fourth-edition.html

If I were to recommend one non study NRSV edition, it would be this one: http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/product?isbn=9780521681315&event=AFF&p=1011504

It is a bit pricey for sure. It doesn't contain any study notes, however there are lots of cross-references, really good maps, and a helpful glossary of terms.

Do you have any other questions?

Daniel said...

Besides NRSV, I have been recommeded the following:

1. Catholic Study Bible (NAB) published by Oxford Univ Press, I think Senior is the editor?
2. New Jerusalem Bible, especially because of its extensive footnotes.

Also, any review comments on the Catholic Bible Dictionary by Scott Hahn?

I have been given a mega-list of Biblical reference books, studies, etc and its so difficult to wade through them. My bottom line is wanting to purchase only those that are truly helpful for a contemporary study of the Scriptures in fidelity to Catholic Tradition. I am not one who is suspicious of everything about modern biblical scholarship but I also know that some are so far out in either right or left field that they can't even see homeplate anymore. :) Thanks. Appreciate your help.

Timothy said...


I think that Hahn's Bible Dictionary is a fine resource to have. In many ways, it is the first of it's kind, for Catholics, since Mackenzie's bible dictionary of thirty years ago. The emmaus road Catholic bible concordance is also very nice, being a thorough, yet not too massive volume.

As for the study bible's you mentioned, I would caution you on getting them for one main reason: they are both, in a sense, a bit dated. The NJB, which is great in many ways, is twenty five years old. The NAB Catholic study bible will be replaced in a few years once the NAB OT revision is published sometime early next year.

Daniel said...

Thanks, Timothy! Mind if I pick your brain now and then as I progress through more Bible studies and have questions about resources? Just finishing up OT course and starting Nt in the fall. God bless you man!

Daniel said...

Oh man I am so embarassed to ask you another one right after signing off...but...I just got this email from a fellow deacon candidate who is wondering about this suggested commentary. It look good and the email says its better than the Jerome Biblical Commentary.

The International Bible Commentary: A Catholic and Ecumenical Commentary for the Twenty-First Century published by Liturgical Press.

Ok I will leave you alone. Thanks.

Timothy said...


no problem. Feel free to ask away. ( my email is mccorm45 (at) yahoo (dot) com)

I have both the Jerome Biblical commentary and the New International. The Jerome Biblical Commentary, though becoming a bit dated, has more info in it IMHO. However, I find the New International commentary to be more helpful and user-friendly. Of course the Jerome biblical commentary is done by Catholic
scholars, while the New International is Catholic-led with other Protestant scholarship as well..... which I don't mind.

I also recommend the new Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture series which is published by Baker books. I know the editor of the series, and find these individual volumes very helpful. So far they have completed Mark, 2 Corinthians, 1 Timothy and Titus, and Ephesians.

Anonymous said...

May I also recommend:

The Navarre New Testament: Though not a technical study bible (dealing with verb tenses and text critical speculations) it nevertheless provides solid Catholic insights into the Faith which is intended by the sacred text. Good resource for preachers.

Orthodox Study Bible: though not Catholic, as Pope JPII pointed out, we western Catholics need to learn to breath with both lungs - Western and Eastern. The OSB provides very valuable notes that allow us to read the text with the ancient fathers and from a liturgical perspective. It also provides a "new" translation of the Septuagint.

To balance the excessive revisionism of some study Bibles, the ESV study Bible, the NIV study Bible, or even the NLT study Bible each acknowledge the important discussions and give good rationals for more traditional positions which, ironically, are closer to the traditional Catholic understanding than some Catholic study Bible notes, especially concerning introductory and thematic material. IMHO, every Catholic needs to study the other side of the arguments before swallowing textual criticism whole.

The Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture appears to be quite solid. I point to the website which has a good article "Who Wrote Ephesians", which, in my opinion, is the way Catholics ought to present their theories.

The Ignatius Study Bible, currently sold as separate booklets, are well worth owning. It will be published soon by Ignatius in one volume.

As for the NRSV, IMO,it is a bit dated. At 20-25 years old it is no longer the cutting edge translation it once was. What was once innovative and fresh is now stale and dated, seeming half-measured and inconsistent. I believe it has passed its useful shelf life. I'd suggest using the classic RSV-CE (Navarre) or the updated RSV-2CE (Ignatius) as we await the new NAB-RE.

Daniel said...

WOW thanks Anonymous (as well as Timothy). I just stumbled upon this website yesterday while at work and it is really what I have been looking for. I much appreciate reviews from unsolicited persons rather relying on the kudos, bells-n-whistles found on the publisher's flaps and back covers!

An elderly priests here has also pointed me in the direction of the late Fr. William Most. He says that Most was every bit as erudite as the late Raymond Brown but that Brown's school of thought won out and Most and his more "traditional" biblical peers were professionally blackmailed or silenced by academia and publishing houses.

Now...I have NO clue as to if this is accurate (or an epic embellishment :) ) or simply sour grapes but..anyone here now of Most and what I have been told?

Daniel said...

Oh here's another question about the NRSV...what the heck is an "Anglicized" version?

Timothy said...


It is essentially the same translation, except with British spelling of words, as well as a few truly minor changes.

Daniel said...

Hey Anonymous...I have no problem learning from Protestant Study Bibles...I actually encountered the Bible for the first time and found my way to the Catholic Faith of my baptism through a jaunt in my late teens with the Disciples of Christ youth group.

So of the ones you mention any suggestion as to which one is best for trustworthy notes, etc? Never read or heard of ESV but checked out the online version. Looks pretty good. Someone told me the NIV is prejudicial in translation and got the "thumbs down" from N.T. Wright whose writings I am coming to enjoy. I thought the NLT was a paraphrase and i heard the USCCB refused imprimatur to their Catholic-project edition.

ESV is looking good to me but I am all open ears man...what's the word? Thanks.

Anonymous said...

The ESV (English Standard Version) is a Protestant Evangelical revision of the Revised Standard Version (which has the classic Catholic Edition.) The ESV and the RSV-Second Catholic Edition are very similar. However, the ESV does show signs of its Evangelical origins - though nothing too damaging. It also has an edition from England that includes the Apocrypha (including our deuterocanon.) The Study Bible contains excellent notes on the 66 "protestant" books. It is my favorite Protestant study Bible. (Hint: Read the Articles with salt, but the notes are solid while the maps, charts and illustrations are worth the price of the whole thing.

The NIV translation is perhaps my least favorite, but the study notes are helpful. Many people buy this study Bible for the notes but read the Bible in a better translation.

The NLT is a very loose translation, very protestant, and I generally dislike it - though it does a much better job of gender inclusive language than many others such as the NRSV or NJB (compare Galatians 4). However, the notes are more decent than the translation. For example, the intro to the Pentateuch acknowledges the JEDP hypothesis and then graciously answers it with a more traditional understanding.

BTW - Orthodox pastor and theologian Patrick Henry Reardon has a little book on Genesis called "Creation and the Patriarchal Histories" which is quite good. Again more theological than technical but from a theologian who knows his technical stuff. His "Christ in the Psalms" was transformational reading for me.

I've never heard of Most but I'll be looking into his work. Thanks for the tip.

Anonymous said...

Back to the topic of the original post - thanks to Timothy for the posts on Bibles from St. Benedict's Press. Because of your post back in December, I now own two of them and really enjoy them. The RSV-CE leather large print has become my favorite every-day Bible. My son loves his RSV-CE standard size Ultrasoft. St. B's does a good job.

Daniel said...

Thanks, Anonymous. My leaning is indeed toward the ESV Study Bible and now you've given me an extra push in that direction.

I will do fine with the articles that need "salt". Actually, I have undergrad and grad degrees in theology but my perpelxity over Scripture scholarship, notes, etc. comes from an "awakening" and having learned that most of my biblical education has been under the influence of extremely progressive (that's the nice term for it) professors. Now I find myself in need of re-education in authentic Catholic biblical studies and am pretty much on my own doing so. That's why I am so glad I stumbles upon this blogsite.

So a HUGE THANK YOU to YOU, TIMOTHY!!!!!! I now can see light at the end of a long scriptural tunnel. :)

Daniel said...

Oh I forgot to add this. Its the link to a website about Most and it has further links to an online collection of many of his articles, etc. BUT I do not know if his views are among those who refuse to acknowledge much of anything from modern scholarship OR orthodox Catholic within the modern biblical setting. I know for sure he is not in left field.


Timothy said...


Saint Benedict Press is indeed doing some really good things for Catholic Bibles. It seems that they, and perhaps Harpercollins (NRSV), are the only ones putting out original and unique Catholic Bibles.


Thanks for the kind words!

Anonymous said...

Yes, and bravo for better bibles! Just today while searching for First Communion gifts I came across the College Study Bible by St. Mary's Press. It looked quite promising both for original content and especially for a new and fresh presentation / layout / design. At least it looked different to most of the NAB's I have ever seen. Do you know anything about it or SMP? See the catalog entry here: http://www.smp.org/catalog/2010/index.htm#/10/

And what about that page-turn animation in their catalog? Kinda cool.

Diakonos said...

Just a word of caution here. As someone involved in catechetics and youth ministry for teesn for many many years I must say that St. Mary's Press tends to be theology-lite in content and their Catholic Youth Bible has some significant troubles IMHO in articles/notes. When I hear St. Mary's Press I tend to runt he other direction...but I must admit that with the USCCB having become adamant about materials meeting CCC confirmity even St. Mary's is publishing some better things even though they seem to have been among the most resustant publishers to this change in the USCCB.

Diakonos said...

Sorry for all the typos in my last post...it's 5:30AM Palm Sunday out here on the Pacific Coast and I havent had enough coffee yet. :)

Anonymous said...

Diakonos, thank sfor the excelllent advise from the tranches. That's egsakly what iwas hopping for.

Really, I don't mind the typos, but did you have to brag about coffee in California? Now I'm homesick.

Blessings on Palm Sunday and thanks for the info.