Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Guest Post: HarperOne NABRE Rebound

Thank you to reader Colleague for submitting this review:

My newly bound NABRE

For my latest rebinding project, I took the HarperOne New American Bible Revised Edition (NABRE) hardcover and had it transformed it into a genuine leather softcover.  While Oxford University Press has produced some acceptable genuine leather NABREs, there honestly isn’t a NABRE currently on the market that beats the text presentation of the HarperOne – I mean, you’ve gotta love the classy red-and-black text, not to mention the fresh organization of the footnotes and references! – and I think that such a superb layout deserves a fancy set of “clothes.”  Some of you may remember the article entitled Healing Catholic “Bible Envy” written this past May by Mickey Maudlin, Senior Vice President, Executive Editor and Director of Bible Publishing at HarperCollins.  In that piece, while discussing the merits of the NABRE translation, Mr. Maudlin lauded that the (then) to-be-released NABRE in black imitation leather was “stunning and should assuage any Catholic still suffering from Bible envy.”  To our misfortune, he was wrong.  What we received was a poorly packaged NABRE thinly disguised as a NRSV Catholic Gift Bible.  Obviously there is plenty of room for improvement when it comes to HarperOne’s binding and design!  While this rebinding project was clearly meant for my own edification, maybe this post will further signal to the many Directors of Bible Publishing that there is a significant and growing segment of Catholics who desire a higher-quality standard in our Bibles.

The first thing that you notice is that this Bible is very blue!   This is a soft, flexible and supple royal blue pebble genuine top grain cowhide with 3/8” yapp on all sides.  Absolutely stellar!  I chose royal blue for three reasons: first, I’m pretty bored with the same ol’ black and brown Bibles and I thought it would be pretty awesome to own a blue Bible (and it is!); second, my fiancĂ© thought it would be more mannish than a turquoise Bible; third, and most importantly, since the Blessed Virgin is most commonly depicted in blue, I couldn’t think of a better symbolism to hold the Word of God.  Hats off to HarperOne for making the hardcover with sewn binding!  The silver embossing on the spine is complementary and really stands out beautifully, I think. 

On the inside, there was some minor surgery required.  Those of you who own the Harper NABRE already know about the glossy Presentation and other Sacramental pages at the front end of the Bible.  There is even a photograph of Pope Benedict XVI.  Even as a practicing Catholic, I find these pages to be largely a waste of space in my Bibles – not to mention unappealing – so I had them excised.  In their stead, I added four blank note pages to the back of the text block for general note-taking – which is more than sufficient for my needs.  Three 3/8” red ribbon markers were added.  I had originally opted for silver ribbon markers to (again) complement the blue, but then I realized that the white pages would make the silver seem sort of bland.  I was reluctant to go with the red ribbons since the red, white and blue might make this seem too much like a patriot’s Bible – especially considering that this is the New AMERICAN Bible (oy vey!) – but then I realized that the red(, white) and blue really do complement each other exceptionally well. 

You’ve got to admit that this Bible really grabs your attention!  Many thanks to Eric and Margie Haley over at Leonard’s Book Restoration for not only the quality craftsmanship which you see here but also their personalized customer service.  It had been about two years since my last rebind, yet my name was immediately recognized when I contacted them – and they were very patient and understanding, especially considering all the last minute changes of mind I had!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Contest Winner

The winner of the NT Wright collection is Bradley Cobb. Thanks to all of you who entered. Bradley, please send me an email with your address so that I can send out your prize early this week.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Saint Benedict Press Promotions

This coming August 13th will be the four year anniversary of the establishment of the Catholic Bibles Blog.  It truly has been a labor of love on my part.  Most notably, this blog has allowed me to interact with so many fellow Catholic Bible lovers from all over the world.  I thank all of you for stopping by and contributing to the various discussions we have had concerning all things Catholic Bibles. 

Now some of my favorite Catholic blogs, from time to time, will ask for donations to keep their sites going or for some other reason.  I have never done that, nor do I ever plan to do it.  However, perhaps you have noticed that on the right side-bar there are two new special links to Saint Benedict Press.  One of them concerns their new Catholic Courses program, while the other is a simple link to their site.  If, in the future, you decide to purchase an item directly from Saint Benedict Press, like one of their many editions of the Douay-Rheims, RSV-CE, or NABRE, please consider entering their site through one of these links.  If you happen to purchase something from them, I will receive a small commission.  Over the next few months, I hope to be able to provide some additional links to the Saint Benedict Press site which will include promotions and discount coupons. 

Thank you for your consideration and God bless!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

New Baby Contest

No, I am not giving away my first born son, but rather in celebration of his birth I am going to offer a contest.  The winner of this contest will receive a selection of N.T. Wright's For Everybody commentary series.  All of these editions are in good condition and have no writing in them.  And as usual, I will cover the shipping.  This set includes commentaries on Mark, Luke, Acts (1&2), Galatians, Thessalonians, 2 Corinthians, the Prison Letters, the Pastorals, Hebrews, and the Catholic letters.

So here are the rules:

1) If you have a blog, please advertise this contest on your site. (If you don't, you can still enter the contest.)

2) This contest is only for people who are in the United States or Canada. (Again, overseas shipping costs are a bit too high for me right now. Sorry.  Do stay tuned however, since I am planning on doing an outside North America giveway at some point in the coming weeks.)

3) The question you need to answer in the comment box:
What is your favorite epistle in the New Testament and why?  Please keep your answer to no more than five sentences.  Those who exceed the five sentence limit, or who create some elaborate run-on sentence, will be disqualified. 

4) The contest ends on Saturday, July 28 @ 11:59PM EST.  I'll announce the winner on Sunday or Monday.  At that time, the winner must contact me, via email, with their address within one week to receive their prize.

5) One entry per person. If you post anonymously, you must leave a name at the end of your comment entry.

Biblia Now Has Douay-Rheims

The site Biblia, which is associated with Logos, now has the Douay-Rheims translation available on its online Bible study site.  Biblia.com is "Your place for Bible study online. Part of a family of services from Logos Bible Software, it offers free access to a collection of Bibles and Bible reference works, with an easy user interface and powerful search engine."  The Clementine Vulgate is also available, as well as the RSV and NRSV among many others.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A Year with the Bible

Just received word from Saint Benedict Press that the translation used for the upcoming A Year with the Bible by Patrick Madrid will be the RSV-CE.  This devotional is due out in August, just in time for the Year of Faith!

Semi-Regular Weekly Poll

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

B16 Working on Jesus of Nazareth III

Pope Benedict, who is currently on vacation at Castel Gandolfo, is spending some of his time away from Rome with putting the finishing touches on his third volume of Jesus of Nazareth.  This final volume will focus on the infancy narratives and the childhood of Jesus.  According to the Vatican Insider, Papal spokesman Fr. Frederico Lombardi said finishing work on his book “is one of [Benedict XVI’s] primary objectives.”  Rumored publication dates range from Lent 2013 to sometime at the end of next year, perhaps during Advent.

Monday, July 16, 2012

New Hahn Book due in Early 2013

Image Books description:

“From the bestselling author of The Lamb’s Supper and Signs of Life comes an illuminating work that unlocks the many mysteries of the Catholic sacrament of the Eucharist.
Long before the New Testament was a document, it was a sacrament. Jesus called the Eucharist by the name Christians subsequently gave to the latter books of the Holy Bible. It was the “New Covenant,” the “New Testament,” in his blood. Christians later extended the phrase to cover the books produced by the apostles and their companions; but they did so because these were the books that could be read at Mass. This simple and demonstrable historical fact has enormous implications for the way we read the Bible.

In Breaking the Bread: A Fresh Approach to the New Testament, Dr. Scott Hahn looks closely at the Road to Emmaus story in the Gospel of Luke as well as at the practices of the early Church to draw lessons for Christians today–lessons for using the Bible in prayer, studying the Bible in fellowship with others, applying scripture to the moral life, and so much more.”

Until then, you can pick up the newest Letter and Spirit Journal 7: The Liturgical Context of Patristic Exegesis

(HT: Brandon)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Journey Home Discussion on Sola Scriptura

I am not sure if I posted this in the past, so I will do so today.  It is a wonderful panel discussion on the issue of sola scriptura.

(BTW: Posting will be lite during the next few weeks as I await the birth of my son......which should be any day now.)

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Coming Soon: A Year with the Bible

Following after Mike Aquilina's A Year with the Church Fathers and A Year with the Angels, noted Catholic speaker and apologist Patrick Madrid has edited A Year with the Bible: Scriptural Wisdom for Daily Living.  Saint Benedict Press has announced that the publication date will be sometime in August. 

Join Patrick Madrid and discover the majesty and power of scripture in A Year with the Bible: Scriptural Wisdom for Daily Living.

Beautifully bound and embossed, this daily devotional offers rich passages from the Bible accompanied by thoughtful meditations by Madrid, world-renowned writer and scholar.

This vibrant and spiritual collection is the perfect daily companion, packed with the wisdom of the Scriptures; the Word of God.

A Year with the Bible is a worthy introduction to Scripture, a daily devotional, a tool for deeper prayer, this book is as versatile as it is beautiful.

Premium Ultrasoft with two-tone sewn binding, ribbon marker and gold edges. New from Saint Benedict Press.

I wonder which Bible translation they used?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Full NRSV Audio Bible Available Soon

A full, Catholic, edition of the NRSV audio Bible will be available later this summer.  The NRSV Catholic Audio Bible, published by Hendrickson Publishers, will be released on August 31st in both CD and MP3 formats.  This audio edition of the NRSV will have:

Cutting-edge recording delivers the complete text of the NRSV in a convenient audio format. Carefully read word-for-word by masterful narrator Stephen Johnston, the spoken Scriptures are available in both Protestant and Catholic editions. In the Catholic Edition, Apocryphal books are interspersed throughout the Old Testament, and deuterocanonical material is included with Daniel and Esther.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Bible Blast Contest

Frequent commentator on this blog, Pomeranian Catholic, has his own contest currently taking place on his blog Pomeranian Catholic.

Looks like some great prizes:
1) GNT Bible, Catholic Edition
2) The Theology of the Body by Pope John Paul II
3) Introduction to Christianity by Pope Benedict XVI (then Cardinal Ratzinger)
4) Mystery Gift

So, check it out!

Monday with the New Psalms: Psalm 134

Psalm 134

1 A song of ascents.

O come, bless the LORD,
all you servants of the LORD.
You who stand in the house of the LORD
throughout the nights.
2 Lift up your hands toward the sanctuary,
and bless the LORD.

3 May the LORD bless you from Zion,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

1 A Song of Ascents.

O come, bless the LORD,
all you servants of the LORD,
who stand by night in the courts
of the house of the LORD
2 Lift up your hands to the holy place,
and bless the LORD.

3 May the LORD bless you from Sion,
he who made both heaven and earth.
--Revised Grail Psalms

NABRE Notes:
[Psalm 134] A brief liturgy exhorting all those who serve in the Jerusalem Temple during the night (cf. Is 30:29) to praise God with words and gestures. Although he is the Creator of the whole universe, God’s blessings emanate in a unique way from Zion, the city of Jerusalem.

[134:1] Servants of the LORD: priests and Levites, cf. Dt 10:8; Ps 113:1; 135:1; Dn 3:85.

(This concludes our comparison between the NABRE and Revised Grail translations of the 'Songs of Ascents.'  What are your overall thoughts?  Stay tuned, I will begin another series of comparisons between the two in the coming weeks.)

Friday, July 6, 2012

Review: The Mass in Sacred Scripture

Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers, who many of you have seen on EWTN, recently published a small booklet, perfect for a Kindle or E-Book, entitled The Mass in Sacred Scripture.  While there have been a number of important books, many longer than this one, that have been published over the past year or two dealing with the New Roman Missal (3rd Edition), this booklet is unique in that it goes through the entire prayer of the Mass and shows the Scriptural source for almost every word heard or read.  While he certainly touches on the main Mass parts, like the Gloria and Creed, he also goes into the numerous dialogues between priest and people, as well as an indepth look at Eucharistic Prayer II. 

The Mass in Sacred Scripture has four main sections: 1) The Mass and Vatican II; 2) The Mass and Sacred Scripture; 3) The Order of Mass; 4) Question and Answer.

As the book description explains:

"The Mass in Sacred Scripture was inspired by the Second Vatican Council’s Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy and its desire that “the treasures of the bible be opened up more lavishly, so that richer fare may be provided for the faithful at the table of God's word” (Sacrosanctum Concilium, no. 51). The Mass in Sacred Scripture walks the reader through a brief history of the liturgical changes at Vatican II that led to the 2010 Roman Missal revision in English, presents the approved English texts of the Roman Missal alongside some of the Scripture passages from which the Mass texts were derived, and shows the intimate connection between the Mass and the Bible. The booklet ends with a short question and answer section designed to root what happens at Mass within the fertile soil of our every day lived experience. The Mass in Sacred Scripture clearly shows that, without a doubt, the Catholic Church fosters great reverence and respect for the Word of God, and recognizes the vital role Sacred Scripture plays in the lives of the Church and her children."

This is one of those books that is a helpful reminder to me, at least, that the Mass is thoroughly soaked in Sacred Scripture.  Coming in at a little over 30 pages, and only costing $2.99, it truly is a wonderful deal for such a handy resource.  For more information on the ministry work of Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers, check out his website Aurem Cordis.

Thanks to Therese from Aurem Cordis for providing a review copy.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

CBA Bible Rankings for July

No, not the Catholic Biblical Association, but the Christian Booksellers Association.  Each month the Christian Booksellers Association publishes a list of their top ten Bibles by sales and units sold.  This list only accounts for those Christian bookstores associated with the CBA, thus excluding any Catholic bookstores, secular bookstores, or places like Amazon.com.  I like providing a link to the monthly ranking every once in a while, in order that we can get a small glimpse as to which Bibles are being purchased by our Protestant brothers and sisters.  You can view the latest CBA rankings for Bible translation here.  It is interesting to note that even with all the controversy surrounding it, the NIV continues to be #1 in this ranking, well ahead of the ESV.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Prayer for Religious Freedom

Almighty God, Father of all nations,
For freedom you have set us free in Christ Jesus.
We praise and bless you for the gift of religious liberty,
the foundation of human rights, justice, and the common good.
Grant to our leaders the wisdom to protect and promote our liberties;
By your grace may we have the courage to defend them, for ourselves and for all those who live in this blessed land.

We ask this through the intercession of Mary Immaculate, our patroness,
and in the name of your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
with whom you live and reign, one God, for ever and ever.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Semi-Regular Weekly Poll

What is your favorite type of Bible cover?

  • Paperback
  • Hardcover
  • Bonded Leather
  • Imitiation (Tru-Tone) Leather
  • Genuine Leather
  • Premium Leather


Monday, July 2, 2012

Monday with the New Psalms: Psalm 133

Psalm 133

1 A song of ascents. Of David.

How good and how pleasant it is,
when brothers dwell together as one!

2 Like fine oil on the head,
running down upon the beard,
Upon the beard of Aaron,
upon the collar of his robe.

3 Like dew of Hermon coming down
upon the mountains of Zion.
There the LORD has decreed a blessing,
life for evermore!

1 A Song of Ascents. Of David.

How good and how pleasent it is,
when brothers live in unity!

2 It is like precious oil upon the head,
running down upon the beard,
running down upon Aaron's beard,
upon the collar of his robes;

3 Like the dew of Hermon, which runs down
on the mountains of Sion.
For there the LORD bestows his blessing:
life forever.
-Revised Grail Psalms

NABRE Notes:
[Psalm 133] A benediction over a peaceful community, most probably the people Israel, but appropriate too for Israelite families (Ps 133:1). The history of Israel, whether of its ancestors in the Book of Genesis or of later periods, was a history of distinct groups struggling to live in unity. Here that unity is declared blessed, like the holy oils upon the priest Aaron or the dew of the rainless summer that waters the crops (Ps 133:23).

[133:1] Brothers: in biblical Hebrew this word includes both the male and female members of a group united by blood relationships or by shared experiences and values. In this Psalm, the term could be applied most appropriately to the people of Israel, those privileged by God to be his chosen children.

[133:2] Oil on the head: oil was used at the consecration of the high priest (Ex 30:2233).

[133:3] Dew: dew was an important source of moisture in the dry climate (Gn 27:28; Hos 14:6). Hermon: the majestic snow-capped mountain visible in the north of Palestine.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

A Note Regarding Anonymous Comments

As many of you know, I welcome anonymous comments.  However, those of you who post anonymously, please remember that it would be helpful to put some name, initial, or alias at the end of your comment in order to better facilitate discussion.  When we have a 30+ comment discussion, like the most recent post on my new Cambridge NRSV, it can become confusing figuring out who is talking to who.  Thank you for your consideration.