Review by "Boniface"

Posted by Jeffrey Pinyan at 9:52 AM

Blogger, Unam Sanctam Catholicam
I recently picked up a great little book on the Mass that I recommend highly. Praying the Mass: The Prayers of the People by Jeffrey Pinyan of the blog The Cross Reference is the best book on the Mass that I have seen in a while, especially because it is the only one that has been written in conformity with the new English translation of the Mass that should be implemented next year. This alone sets it apart from all other books on the Mass currently floating around.

Jeff's book is meant for those who want to get deeper into the Mass – essentially, it's a practical guide to true active participation and a welcome counter to tired out old activist notions of participation that became dominant in the post-conciliar years. This would be an excellent book for friends or family who have some knowledge of the Mass but want to learn how to go deeper. I purchased twelve copies to give out to my RCIA class when we talk about the liturgy. If you are already a liturgical expert, then this book probably won't tell you anything new, but it would be great to have on hand to give to persons who might have questions about what goes on at Mass and why we do what we do. The book seems to be written to help promulgate a more reverent participation and conscious reflection on the Mass, in keeping with the wishes of our Holy Father to restore dignity and solmenity to the celebration of the Roman Rite.

The book takes you through each part of the Mass chapter by chapter, drawing out the pertinent theological observations and backing them up with citations from the [Catechism], the Popes and Scripture. The Mass prayers themselves are provided in Latin with the corresponding, correct English translations (the ones that will be coming out soon) next to them. At the end of every chapter are a series of thoughtful questions and reflections designed to help the reader put together the various themes brought up in the course of the chapter.

Jeff's writing is clear and insightful ... and his observations and theology all perfectly in line with a traditional understanding of the Mass as a Sacrifice. The book is written about the [Ordinary Form of the Mass], but he frequently [uses] the Extraordinary Form as a reference point and reminds us that the Extraordinary Form is a valid and praiseworthy expression of the Roman Rite, echoing Benedict's words in the motu proprio. I recommend this book highly.

Reviews and Interviews

Posted by Jeffrey Pinyan at 9:51 AM

Here are critical reviews of Praying the Mass: The Prayers of the People.

Here are interviews I have had (on radio and podcasts) about Praying the Mass: The Prayers of the People.

New Translations Approved by the USCCB

Posted by Jeffrey Pinyan at 9:44 AM

On Tuesday, November 17th, the USCCB voted to approve the remaining five sections of the new English translation of the third edition of the Missale Romanum.  The next step is for Rome to grant its recognitio to the translation (hopefully in early 2010).  The new translation would hopefully be used as early as Easter of 2011, but perhaps it will wait until Advent of 2011 instead.

But the catechesis on the new translation can begin now!  Indeed, it should begin now.  As parts of the translation become available, catechetical resources will appear as well.  The Ordinary of the Mass (the parts that do not change from day to day and week to week) has already been approved.  My book, Praying the Mass: The Prayers of the People, introduces the people's half of the new translation.  By mid-2010, a second book, The Prayers of the Priest, will be published, introducing the priest's half of the new translation.  There will also be a second edition of The Prayers of the People with additional material for Chapter 1 and Chapter 9; this additional material will be made freely available on the Internet for the benefit of those who have already bought the first edition.

Zenit Ad on Nov. 10th

Posted by Jeffrey Pinyan at 7:50 AM

Welcome to all visitors from the ad for Praying the Mass: The Prayers of the People in the Zenit daily email from Tuesday, November 10th!

New book on the revised English translation of the Mass
"Praying the Mass: The Prayers of the People" is a thorough yet accessible catechesis on the Mass based on the NEW English translation of the Roman Missal. It explains why we pray what we pray, where it comes from in Scripture, and what it means. It is a mystagogical catechesis which interprets the rites of the Mass in light of salvation history, explains their meaning and purpose, and relates them to the Christian life. Read "Praying the Mass" to enhance your full, conscious, and active participation in the greatest prayer that can be prayed, the Mass!

Paperback, 150 pages, $12.00

First Review!

Posted by Jeffrey Pinyan at 9:41 PM

Edith Fiore
The book was recommended by a Catholic website, I thought it was excellent. I was surprised that it seemed not to have been published by a well-known editor, maybe because the new translation of the Mass has not yet been officially approved. There certainly would be many Catholics interested in this very thoughtful commentary on the Novus Ordo translation of the Mass.

Interview with Dave Lozinger of Hearing God's Call

Posted by Jeffrey Pinyan at 9:03 PM

(Update:  Visit Hearing God's Call for an article and the whole interview!)

I sat down with Dave Lozinger of Hearing God's Call last Friday (October 9th) to speak with him about the new English translation of the Mass and my book, Praying the Mass: The Prayers of the People.  Our conversation will soon be available on his web site, but here's a short excerpt:

Here's the MP3 (2:26, 2.2 MB):

Transcript of Jeffrey Pinyan’s Interview
with Dave Lozinger of Hearing God's Call, October 9, 2009

Dave: What's the background, this new English translation?

Jeff: Well, let's go back to the Second Vatican Council just to put some groundwork down.  The Second Vatican Council, the first document they put out was on the liturgy, and that tells you right away how important the liturgy is to the Church.

Dave: And what was the name of that document?

Jeff: Sacrosanctum Concilium which means "This sacred council," that's the first words of the document.  Now in this document there are so many phrases that are used almost every day in the Church:  the Eucharist as the "source and summit" of the Church's life, "full, conscious, active participation" – those phrases come from this document.  Now, one of the things this document said is that the vernacular should have a place in the Mass. (cf. Sacrosanctum Concilium 36, 54)  And where we are today is, most of us know the Mass simply in the vernacular, whether it's English, French, Spanish... Now, the thing is, this vernacular translation comes from the Latin original, which means the English translation we have is only as good as the people who translated it.  In the next couple years we're going to have a new translation; there's not going to be a new Mass, but it's going to be a new translation of that Latin original.

Dave: What's the impetus behind it?  Who's driving it?

Jeff: Well, it goes back to Rome, it goes back to the Vatican. In 2001, the Congregation for Divine Worship put out a document called Liturgiam authenticam which means "Authentic liturgy," and this document was, I think, the fifth document coming from the Vatican about how to properly apply Sacrosanctum Concilium, how to apply that constitution on the liturgy. ["Fifth Instruction 'For the Right Implementation of the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council' on the Use of Vernacular Languages in the Publication of the Books of the Roman Liturgy"]

Dave: So was there the assumption that it hadn't been applied properly in the first place, or that there needed to be some sort of correction or calibration?

Jeff: I would say correction and calibration; I would say that this is an ongoing experience for the Church, because the vernacular in the Roman Rite is a novelty, let's put it that way.  It's something we've only had for a few decades, and it's something that, honestly, it will take a while before we're comfortable with it.  There's a lot of misconceptions about the vernacular:  people think that if you say "Latin Mass" you're referring to the Mass before Vatican II, when the Mass that we...

Complimentary Copies

Posted by Jeffrey Pinyan at 8:06 PM

Today I mailed four complimentary copies of Praying the Mass: The Prayers of the People to Bishop Vasa of Oregon, Archbishop Chaput of Colorado, Archbishop Vigneron of Michigan, and Archbishop Aymond of Louisiana.  The last two are candidates for the position of Chairman of the USCCB Committee on Divine Worship.

Bishop Vasa of Oregon has a weekly column in the Catholic Sentinel, his diocese's paper.  Check out his two most recent articles:

Support a Catholic Speaker: Jeff Cavins

Posted by Jeffrey Pinyan at 2:37 PM

I first heard about Jeff Cavins a year and a half ago when my parish decided to use the Great Adventure Bible Timeline study, which brings you through the story of the Bible (14 books' worth) chronologically in 24 weeks.  Those of us who wanted to be facilitators for the Bible study attended a Called to Lead conference held at our diocesan center in July of 2008, sponsored by Ascension Press who publishes the Great Adventure series.  Jeff (along with a host of other excellent Catholic speakers, such as Dr. Tim Gray and Dr. Ted Sri) was there presenting the Timeline and its related studies to my diocese (as well as other dioceses in the NY-NJ-PA are).

Jeff began developing the Great Adventure Bible Timeline back in 1984 as a way of helping Christians see "the big picture" in the Bible, the story of covenants between God and man, the story of a promised Savior:  salvation history.  He was not a Catholic at that time, but his quest to understand Scripture better led him to the conclusion that the Church which Jesus founded is none other than the Catholic Church.

Jeff has been busy as a Catholic.  A friend of Mother Angelica, he filled in for her on her live EWTN shows from time to time, produced and hosted Life on the Rock for six years, and taped a thirteen-part series with Dr. Scott Hahn entitled Our Father's Plan (which serves as a good overview of the Bible Timeline).  In addition to being a husband and father, he gives talks at conferences all across the country throughout the year.  He writes for Catholic Scripture Study International and has authored several books, including My Life on the Rock (his autobiography) and I'm Not Being Fed! (on the Eucharist).

If Scripture stumps you, if the Bible bores you, if the Word worries you... give Jeff Cavins and the Great Adventure Bible Timeline a chance.  You'll receive a wonderful Scriptural foundation that you can build upon for the rest of your life.

Support Jeff Cavins' Scripture ministry by visiting Ascension Press.