Note: It has been more than a month since TCM’s last review. However, the Daily Roman Missal took some time to review. TCM reviews books by the order they arrive in. Therefore, some books may take longer than others to review and the number of reviews published per month may not be consistent. Thank you for understanding.
One book I have wanted to review for a long time was the Daily Roman Missal, 7th Edition. The wish finally came true months ago (end of February 2017) when a FedEx package came from Our Sunday Visitor (OSV) with a copy of the Daily Roman Missal, 7th Edition, burgundy bonded leather edition. I was thrilled and carefully opened the Missal. The Missal is published by both OSV and Midwest Theological Forum (MTF) in which I have reviewed their Manual of Prayers months ago on this blog. The Daily Roman Missal was put together by Fr. James Socias, a priest of the prelature of Opus Dei. He also compiled the Handbook of Prayers
I was impressed first of all with the size of the Missal. When the Missal came, I expected it to be a little bit larger, especially because the Missal contained the readings and other prayers, not just the prayers of the Roman Missal. There are several edition of the Missal. The edition provided to me by OSV was the burgundy padded bonded-leather cover. I really like the feel of the padded cover and the bonded leather… it’s really nice to hold in your hands. The Missal was printed in Italy, the country where many Catholic articles come from such as rosaries and Holy Cards (especially the Fratelli Bonella Holy Cards… my favourite!).
Opening the Missal, I was a bit disappointed at how thin the pages of the Missal were. As you flip through the slideshow (below), you may see so. However, I think this is understandable as this Missal is thick (composed of 2514 pages). If it used the same paper as the Manual of Prayers, the book would be HEAVY like a brick! The six ribbons were neatly tucked into the pages (for the purpose of packing). The ribbons were of six different colours and neatly burned so the ends would not frey. Books by Midwest Theological Forum always provide an adequate number of ribbons. Its Manual of Prayers had two ribbons… more than enough for a prayer book. I used The Catholic Company’s tutorial video.
The pages are gilded in gold. When I unwrapped the missal from the shrinkwrapped, I liked how the gilded edges were simply… shiny! They reflected the light beautifully. However, the top gilding in the corner where the ribbons are attached, it becomes worn out due to the rubbing of the ribbon against the edges of the missal (see image in slideshow).
The text… the most important part of the Missal! The text is printed in two colours: red and black, the colours one would see when using any Roman Missal. The red are the rubrics, instructions for the priest and the congregation. The text size of the readings and the Mass texts are about 12pt while the Latin text and other texts are of 10pt font. If I am not mistaken, the text is of Palatino Linotype, a font I really like to use because of its readability.
A feature that I love about this Missal is the use of Latin. The Order of Mass is printed with Latin on the left and English on the right. For study purposes, this is a great feature! (Note: the Prefaces are only in English) This Missal would be great to assist those on travel. Many Masses in Rome and the Vatican are celebrated in Latin. This is great to follow and actually respond during the Mass. The Antiphons and Gospel acclamation are printed in about 10pt font so to assist those who attend parishes who attend Masses at parishes which use the Latin version of the Antiphons and the Gospel acclamation (e.g. St. Michael’s Cathedral Basilica, Toronto uses Latin in their Antiphons). The Eucharistic Prayers of Reconciliation and for Various Needs are not provided in this Missal. However, they are available for use with this Missal through MTF’s website here. There are no print copies for sale sadly.
I have inquired to MTF years ago about what Lectionary Translation the Daily Roman Missal is composed of. I received a response saying that the Lectionary Readings are those used in the United States of America (New American Bible). Therefore sadly, the readings did not match the ones used in Canada as the CCCB uses the New Revised Standard Version Lectionary. It would not match the translation of the readings in other areas too such as Australia which uses the New Jerusalem Bible Lectionary. However, the meaning of the text do match the other translations, therefore good for study purposes. I use the Missal each night to find the day’s Mass readings and write reflections of it in my Spiritual Journal.
Moving towards the general prayer aspect of the Missal, there are more than 50 pages worth of prayers in the back, probably taken from MTF Handbook of Prayers. An interesting feature is that this sections not only contains prayers, but contain a whole section called, “How to Be a Better Catholic”. It is, to me, like a condensed Catholic Handbook, or small Catechism… a very useful feature! The prayers in the back include basic prayers (sign of the cross, Lord’s prayer…), midday prayers, evening prayers, prayers for the preparation of Mass, prayers before Mass, prayers after Mass, the Eucharistic Adoration ritual, guide for confession, devotions to the Trinity, devotions to Our Lord (including the Stations of the Cross), devotions to the Holy Spirit, devotions to the Blessed Virgin Mary (including the Rosary), devotions to St. Joseph, prayers at the time of death and other various prayers. Many prayers also come with its Latin translation too which is very convenient, especially when following the Pope when he’s praying the Rosary or the Angelus.
Title: Daily Roman Missal Seventh Edition
Publisher: Midwest Theological Forum, Our Sunday Visitor
Format: Print, burgundy bonded leather cover, thin cream bible paper with red and black text
Dimensions (approximate): 7 x 4.7 x 2.4 inches
- Bonded leather cover gives it a very nice texture
- NAB Lectionary Readings (for USCCB Churches)
- Text is in black and red
- Well constructed book, printed in Italy
- Beautiful illustrations and art scattered throughout (in black and white)
- Lays flat when opened
- Order of Mass in both Latin and English (except for the Prefaces, English only)
- Antiphons and Gospel Acclamation also provided in Latin
- 6 ribbons of different colours, neatly burnt ends to prevent fraying
- Gold gilded edges
- High quality endpages
- Good font size for reading (12pt for main texts, 10pt for rubrics and other texts)
- Very brief commentary before Sunday’s readings and brief biography for Saint’s feast days
- Wide variety of prayers in the back
- Great for travelling pilgrims and travelling priests
- Thin paper, able to see text on the other side
- Extra care must be taken when turning the pages
- Book is quite thick, 1514 pages
- After constant use of the ribbons, the top edges of the page becomes worn, distorting the gilding on the top
- The NAB readings are only in effect for the US, not for Canada or other english speaking areas
- The Eucharistic Prayers of Reconciliation and for Various Needs are not provided in this Missal, only in a PDF file online
On “The Catholic Man’s” Scale
I really love the Daily Roman Missal. Despite its cons, the Missal is something Catholics should invest on so to help one attend Mass more actively, especially when travelling to a foreign country. I wish that there was a Daily Roman Missal with the NRSV Canadian readings so to follow along with the readings here in Canada. I believe this is a very dignified Missal. It may be good for use for travelling priests (this however, must be confirmed with the Diocesan bishop on the use of the Daily Roman Missal replacing the actual Roman Missal on travels).
I believe it would be nice to get a Missal cover to protect this great missal. I was snooping around and found www.missalcovers.com. I have not seen one of their products physically. However, looking at the pictures on their site, it seems like a Missal cover would be something worth buying for the Daily Roman Missal. These missal covers are made by Leah’s Legacy. I would certainly hope to see one of these covers one day so to review them here on The Catholic Man Reviews
A big thank you to Our Sunday Visitor for sending me this review copy! I appreciate it very much!
If you would like to purchase a copy of the Daily Roman Missal, visit the Our Sunday Visitor online store to purchase it online.