If you don’t have one, get your own hand missal

Over at the Cornell Society there is an interesting post about having your own hand missal, which you can use when participating at celebrations of Holy Mass.  I think people should have a hand missal for either the older or newer form, depending on what you prefer.  

I don’t like the idea of disposable missalettes, though I know they are useful. 

The comments below are useful if you are thinking about getting such a useful book. 

Keep in mind that this focuses on the Baronius hand missal.  I think that the Angelus Press has sent one to me for a review, and when I return to the USA I will post about it. 

That said…

Let’s see the comments posted over at Cornell Society with my emphases and comments.

Get a Missal


Now that the Traditional Latin Mass community in our part of the country has become more established, I’ve been looking about me on Sundays and wondering: why don’t more people buy daily missals?

Quite recently, I was surprised to see Fr. Z of What Does the Prayer Really Say? write a post about the Baronius Missal which he had apparently just seen for the first time. Now, I received a Baronius Missal from my dear Doctor as a baptismal gift in May of 2005, so by now it’s an old friend for me. But, looking around at the congregation on Sunday at the Latin Mass, I note that surprisingly few people have their own daily missal. Many use the small red booklets from Ecclesia Dei, together with printouts containing the propers for the day, but it’s only the rare odd person who actually has a full missal.  [I can’t really understand why some people don’t want to follow the proper texts of Mass.]

So here is my word on the matter: if you plan to assist regularly at the Traditional Latin Mass, you really must get yourself a missal! The red booklets are great to have around for the sake of newcomers and beginners, but it is infinitely nicer in the long run to have your own complete hand missal. In the first place, of course, it keeps you from having to refer back and forth between two different documents throughout the Mass (the missals have multiple ribbons for place markers, so it’s quite easy to flip back and forth between the propers and the ordinary.) It also gives you information that isn’t included in the red books (for example, the prefaces for all the different liturgical seasons), and all kinds of other invaluable spiritual aids, such as devotions to be read before and after confession and communion, morning and evening prayers to be used at home, litanies, and all manner of devotions for particular occasions. It has the kyriale in the back with several musical settings of the ordinary, which is great for people who like to sing. For some periods (Lent, for example) it includes not only the Sunday propers, but also the daily ones, and it also includes the propers for all the feast days, so even if you can’t get to Mass every day you can still read the passages on your own at home.

I’m not really sure why more people (including some who assist at the Latin Mass extremely regularly and faithfully) don’t make this investment. [Amen to that, brother.] My husband suggested that, for some people, paying sixty dollars for a book is just not something they would ever do. And I understand that for some, that kind of expenditure might really constitute a hardship. But I would encourage you to consider the benefits. It’s only a one-time cost — with proper care, you should be able to use the same missal for decades and likely your whole life. And in fact, that’s really the best way to do it, because your missal will start to have a real personal significance when it’s been with you for a long time. You can leave it to a grandchild someday. (What a nice keepsake that would be!) But more importantly, as you become familiar with your missal, certain of its contents become important parts of your spiritual life. I don’t even need ribbons for many of my favorite places by now, because I know exactly where they are. At the same time, I sometimes discover new and interesting tidbits that I hadn’t seen before.  [I have seen people with hand missals so packed with memorial cards and other holy cards that they need a rubber band to hold it shut.  What a great way to remember people at Mass!]

I think it’s particularly funny that I seem to be the only member of our Latin Mass choir who has a regular missal, which is silly, because the missal is especially invaluable for choir members. The pews where the choir sit are already piled with multiple books and pieces of music, and the put-down-pick-up game becomes considerably easier when you have the text of the ordinary and the propers, plus the musical settings of the ordinary all in one book, together with your before-Mass readings and your devotions for before and after Communion! I honestly can’t understand how the others live without this book. So, for all those who don’t have a missal yet, get one. If $60 is too much for you to spend on a whim, put it on your Christmas or birthday list. You won’t regret it.

Good comments.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in SESSIUNCULA. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Cornelius says:

    I purchased a Baronius 1962 Daily Missal on your recommendation, Fr. Z,
    and am extremely pleased with it.

  2. $60 is different than $120 says:

    Is there any logic to the consideration that the Holy See is musing over adding additional prefaces and feast days to the EF Missal? What I mean is, does it make sense to wait until that is settled (and for the reissue of the updated new printing of the 1962 Missal) – or is it so abysmally far away that Rome will get to reconciling the two calendars that I should just go with $60 now and see what happens?

  3. Fr. Paul McDonald says:

    This is very good.

    Also,respecting the “freedom of the children of God” we can remember what Pius XII taught in Mediator Dei :


    Once, at a Mass in rapid Italian, which I don’t understand, I assisted using St. Lawrence de Port Maurice’s method of acts of faith, adoration, etc. And it seemed fruitful.

  4. Fr Paul McDonald says:

    This is very good, as long as, respecting the “freedom of the children of God” we remember what Pius XII taught in Mediator Dei :

    108. Many of the faithful are unable to use the Roman missal even though it is written in the vernacular; nor are all capable of understanding correctly the liturgical rites and formulas. So varied and diverse are men’s talents and characters that it is impossible for all to be moved and attracted to the same extent by community prayers, hymns and liturgical services. Moreover, the needs and inclinations of all are not the same, nor are they always constant in the same individual. Who, then, would say, on account of such a prejudice, that all these Christians cannot participate in the Mass nor share its fruits? On the contrary, they can adopt some other method which proves easier for certain people; for instance, they can lovingly meditate on the mysteries of Jesus Christ or perform other exercises of piety or recite prayers which, though they differ from the sacred rites, are still essentially in harmony with them.

    Once, at a Mass in rapid Italian, which I don’t understand, I assisted using St. Lawrence de Port Maurice’s method of acts of faith, adoration, etc. And it seemed fruitful.

  5. Jay says:

    I just took a gander at the Angelus Press Missal last night seeing that it has the Prayer Against Satan and the Fallen Angels issued by Pope Leo XIII which may be(the missal says) used by laypeople . According to this: http://www.ewtn.com/library/CURIA/CDFEXORC.htm laypeople cannot use this prayer. Whether it is placed in a public or private context I’m not sure. Some clarification on the matter would be appreciated.

  6. Sid Cundiff says:

    Last Oct, out of my own pocket, I purchased 50 “Red Book” Missalettes for our own MEF at Davis Chapel, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC. AND I agree as to their inadequacy, especially for newcomers to the MEF. The propers are all from Trinity Sunday, and this is confusing. It would have been better to have no Propers at all. Also, the parts said by the priest “in a low voice” should be so indicated, and the parts of the server/congregation should be boldfaced. This too would help people new to the Traditional Mass.

    True, some of the Missals could do a bit better indicating posture for Low Mass and High Mass. Still, everyone should have the formal large Missal.

  7. Daniel says:

    I own several hand missals, and in fact I have inadvertantly began a hobby of collecting them. They all offer something a little different than the others – such as the military-issued missal’s short but very good Stations of the Cross. I love reading through them and using them for different devotions, but I rarely use them at Mass. My reasoning is that I would much rather watch the sacred action at the altar and listen with my heart than constantly have my nose buried in a book just so that I could intellectually understand what the priest is reciting at the altar. To me, this distracts a person from the most sublime mystery of the Mass. Instead of following along in a hand missal, I will often recite the rosary or other prays, or I will simply remain still and silent interiorly. I am not personally convinced that assisting at Mass with a hand missal is any better than without one. I find that, especially with newcomers, those who use hand missals so frequently have their noses in the missals while flipping pages frantically to catch up with Father miss out on so much beauty and possible time for prayer. However, I do know that many people find the aid of a hand missal very helpful at Mass. If that is the case, by all means make use of the missal – anything that allows one to get closer to our Lord and the Mass should be commended.

  8. Pat says:

    I have a new (2007) Baronius Missal, a new (2004) Angelus Missal, and two older (1961) St. Joseph Missals. They are all very useful in different ways.

    The Baronius appears to be the most complete. It seems to include everything imaginable. Some of the Latin text is in a very small font and could be difficult to read. It would be better to have it just a little larger, if possible.

    The Angelus is larger and is the easiest of the new ones to read. The Angelus also has bell symbols (one bell or three bells) at the places where bells are rung, and that helps us follow along and to know where we are if we cannot hear the priest speaking.

    The St. Joseph Missals include the directions for “Sit,” “Stand,” or “Kneel” as appropriate. It also includes illustrations of the positions of the priest and server(s) at various times so that we can follow along more easily.

    I would like to suggest to publishers of Missals that future editions should have the bell symbols and the instructions for Sit/Stand/Kneel. Illustrations would also help. At some Masses I’ve attended recently, many people do not seem to know exactly when to sit, stand, or kneel. It’s not really helpful to try to just “do what everyone else is doing” because there are times when about half of the people are doing one thing while the other half are doing something else.

  9. Craig says:

    I bought a St. Joseph daily missal off of ebay for $12, with the additions made by Blessed JohnXXIII. It’s white, with a very stiff cover (the only thing I dislike about it). I like it, though I have been thinking about getting the baronious edition.

  10. Laura says:


    I think the Prayer Against Satan and the Fallen Angels is the St. Michael Prayer, part of the Leonine Prayers after Mass. (Low Masses, right?) They were suppressed, along with the last gospel, by Paul VI but John Paul II encouraged their recitation as recently as the mid-90’s. Since it’s not an official part of the mass, it can initiated by the laity after Mass.

    I think (please someone correct me if I’m wrong) that the CDF document is referring to the rite of Exorcism which the laity may NOT perform.


  11. dob says:

    I got my missal last October. As a younger Catholic I was so delighted to have it. It is a book of faith and instruction. It has brought great fruits to my family and friends. I have purchased some as Christmas presents and all those have been recieved with great joy shock and surpise. Shock in realising how much of the faith has been lost to our generation. Joy at knowing that here is a great deposit of faith at our fingertips. Fr Z. when you blogged about the 10hrs to pack up and leave for the hills what would you take, my first thoughts were, beads, holy water and my missal. So, I would happily and wholeheartedly agree – GET YOURSELF A MISSAL.

  12. Jeff Pinyan says:

    My mother gave me her 1961 St. Joseph’s Missal for Christmas. It’s got a lot of helpful information in it. My only gripe is that the ribbons are so tiny and short, they barely stick out the bottom of the book… maybe I should drag them over the the side.

  13. Liz F. says:

    We have missals, but we don’t use them as much as I would like. We have 8 kids (14 to 2.) I have tried to get the older kids and myself to get into the habit of having our missals with us and USE them, but I haven’t succeeded much. If the boys have them then it seems they are needed to serve that day or something like that. My 14-year old daughter has one, but she is often helping me with the little squirmy ones. Or if I find myself alone at mass I look for a missal and find that it is in another vehicle! Argh! We do use them for prayers and litanies etc. at home. Anyway,that’s why we limp along with the red books. I wish I would have been brought up with missals so they would be ingrained in our mass routines, but these days when we get to mass I’m grateful to have remembered all of the children!! I do agree that missals are fabulous and recently gave my sister one as a gift. She loved it! Anyway, that’s why our family doesn’t use them as we should! God bless, Liz F.

  14. Chris says:

    Common father – the Propers are not that important! Hand Missals were banned until about 130 years ago! I actually do have a full hand missal but I only read the reading and follow the prayers at the foot of the altar. The rest of the time I meditate and say the devotions that are in my missal. That is how Mass was heard by Catholics for near on all of the time that Latin was used and most people didn’t understand it. It is, frankly, quite Protestant to obsessively follow the mass word for word. What of the ‘sacred mutter’?

  15. Mac McLernon says:

    I have Missals for both the Extraordinary and the Ordinary Forms of Mass. However, I often just prefer to pray quietly, while watching what is going on. I understood that this was an acceptable way to participate in the Mass…

  16. Henry Edwards says:

    Actually, in the congregation mentioned in this Cornell post — the most prayerfully participative TLM community I’ve personally been a part of — it appears to me that from a quarter to a third of those old enough use their own hand missals (perhaps about evenly split between old ones and new 1962 missals).

    This number has probably reflects the fact that — from the start of our formerly indult Mass — we’ve provided enough of the ubiquitous red missalettes for everyone wanting one to pick it up on the way into Mass. Together with the handy matching Latin-English inserts that contain all of each Sunday Mass’s own propers and readings. Although I’ve never surveyed usage carefully, the number of these picked up each Sunday often seems approximately equal to the estimated number of adults in attendance. With the result that — as the one who prepares these inserts weekly — I’ve sometimes wondered whether some people somehow contrive to use both complete hand missals and missalette inserts.

    Of course, the way these things go, this coming Sunday (when I’ll probably look about more carefully) may well be the very one when more people decide to just concentrate prayerfully on the action at the altar — plus listening to the sung propers and chanting the ordinary along with the choir (for which many of our folks don’t need missals) — which higher form of interior participation a few especially blessed individuals may rise to after years of attentive missal usage.

  17. Henry Edwards says:

    Sid: The propers are all from Trinity Sunday, and this is confusing. It would have been better to have no Propers at all.

    Yes, these red missalettes you’ve thoughtfully purchased really deserve to be augmented with the matching weekly propers that Una Voce Orange County provides for free usage. You can go to uvoc.org each week and download a couple of pdf files to print the coming Sunday’s complete Latin-English propers and readings on the front and back of an standard sheet of paper that folds to become an insert of the same page size as the red missalette.

    After you get going, this takes very little time, and is very rewarding for your missalette users. People move these inserts through the missalette as Mass proceeds, so it’s almost like having a real missal, but without needing ribbons to turn back and forth.

  18. Katherine says:

    We have both the Baronius missal and the Marian missal as well as various children’s missals. My tote bag is already chock full of coloring books, pacifiers, diapers, so with missals it is really heavy! But I think it invaluable to have our own, it helps the children read the gospel passage and gives them prayers at certain times during Mass.

    Sid, I have offered to purchase red missals for the new TLM in the Raleigh area. The parishoners don’t have a clue as to what they are supposed to be doing: yesterday they stood until Communion- that means they stood during the Consecration! They said the Kyrie by just repeating what the priest said and chimed in during the priest’s Domine non sum dignus. It is pretty chaotic to say the least. But I will offer what I can and encourage the priest. It takes about a year for the average Catholic to really understand and enjoy the TLM, it must be very difficult for a priest to jump in with almost no training and not very enthusiastic congregants.

  19. Ramil says:

    Jay and Laura:

    The prayer on p. 1796 of the Angelus Press missal is indeed the Prayer Against Satan and the Rebellious Angels. It is the second of two exorcism prayers found in the Rituale Romanum. This exorcism is composed of two sections: a Prayer to Saint Michael the Archangel and the Prayer of Exorcism.

    The St. Michael the Archangel prayer used after mass is a much abbreviated version of the prayer found in this exorcism.

    What the CDF was asked to decide upon was the development of groups of laypeople, with or without the presidership of a priest, forming to pray for ‘deliverance’ of individuals from evil spirits. A sort of ‘healing ministry’ that had adapted the use of the prayers of exorcism.

    MY own personal analysis & opinion:

    The Rituale Romanum (both the Weller 1952 English/Latin and the 1964 English version) only state in the rubrics for this prayer that: “The following exorcism can be used by bishops, as well as by priests who have this authorization from their Ordinary.”

    I have investigated the popularity of this Prayer Against Satan and the Rebellious Angels, and any publication in print or on the internet almost always references the seemingly last version issued, with the following Imprimatur: +Henri, OMI, Vicar Apostolic of James Bay, August 15, 1967.

    This 1967 version begins: “The Holy Father exhorts priests to say this prayer as often as possible, as a simple exorcism to curb the power of the devil and prevent him from doing harm. The faithful also may say it in their own name, for the same puropose as any approved prayer…. It could also be used as a solemn exorcism (an offical and public ceremony, in Latin) to expel the devil. It would then be said by a priest, in the name of the Church and only with the Bishop’s permission.”

    According to Inde ab Aliquot Annis issued by the CDF and signed by Card. Ratzinger in 1984 (http://www.ewtn.com/library/CURIA/CDFEXORC.htm), there were certain restrictions reiterated concerning exorcisms, and begins thus:

    “For several years, in certain areas of the Church, assemblies formed to pray for liberation from the influence of demons (though they do not perform exorcisms as such) have been increasing in number. These assemblies are often led by members of the laity, even when there is a priest present.

    Since the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has been asked what is the proper attitude towards these activities, this Dicastery deems it necessary to make known to all Ordinaries the response which follows…”

    What seems to have happened was that at some point after 1964, this second formal prayer of exorcism was encouraged as a private devotional prayer for individuals to use, and was imprimatured as such.

    And as is usually the case, people tend to ‘develop’ and ‘adapt’ until told otherwise.

    I believe (and I could be wrong, of course) the popularity of such deliverance prayer in the Catholic church began with the rise of Charismatic Renewal, and was such that groups began using the exorcism prayer since prayer groups, per se, were not necessarily public (in a church, liturgical setting) but private prayer sessions.

    The key to understanding Inde ab Aliquot Annis is: “These assemblies are often led by members of the laity, even when there is a priest present. Since the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has been asked what is the proper attitude towards these activities…”

    Basically, Card. Ratzinger reiterated what the Church has always taught about exorcisms:

    1) no one other than a priest specifically delegated by the Ordinary can perform exorcisms (in public), with either form found in the Rituale Romanum. And these prayer groups in question are neither really private, nor qualified to use the prayer, even if there was a priest presiding;

    2) no lay person cannot use the second half of the exorcism prayer outloud, as an outright command and communication with the evil spirit (in fact, the rubrics state that the signs of the cross used by the priest at a solemn exorcism would be made silently by an individual over him or her self).

    3) In fact, the rubrics of 1967 prayer are quite clear: lay persons may use it as private prayer as they would any approved prayer, avoiding anything that looks like a usurpation of the delegated exorcist’s role.

    Now, IMHO, the 1984 declaration says nothing about private (individual) use of the prayer, so long as it remains just that: private, individual, devotional, non-group prayer.

    The Declaration’s final paragraph even says:

    “Of course, the enunciation of these norms should not stop the faithful of Christ from praying, as Jesus taught us, that they may be freed from evil (cf. Mt 6:13). Moreover, Pastors should take this opportunity to remember what the tradition of the Church teaches about the function properly assigned to the intercession of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, the Apostles and the Saints, even in the spiritual battle of Christians against the evil spirits.”

    So, I don’t see an outright ban on the use of the prayer individually and privately; I do see the Church reiterating her authority to direct its usage by groups.

    Hope that helps, and please let me know if my analysis may be incorrect.

  20. Soli Deo Gloria! says:

    To avoid getting lost in the pages of my Baronius missal during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, I start rearranging the ribbons on Wednesday to mark the pages I’ll need for Sunday morning. I practice reading aloud in Latin by myself then silent reading in English. I consult the instructions on page 82 of the said missal and Father Z’s website as I am a TLM neophyte. I must admit I probably look like one of those described in Daniel’s post – flipping through the missal – because there are moments at church when I can’t believe I’m still on earth after being carried away by those ethereal voices.

  21. RosieC says:

    I’ve had my own Baronius Missal for just about a year now and I’m glad I have it. I’m never going back.

    However, I think we’re giving the red booklets a really bad rap, here. I personally found the little comments in the margins to be extremely helpful to my own formation as the TLM came to my parish. I learned a lot about the TLM, the Mass in general, and even the Catholic Faith itself via those comments.

    The same comments are not in my big missal and flipping back and forth can be a bit cumbersome for newcomers. When we first had EF at our parish with an indult, almost 4 years ago now, we had the red booklets and papers with the translations of the propers(available as PDF on several websites, I understand). Meanwhile the red missals do have some pre- and post-communion prayers, exposition and benediction of the Eucharist, and as I recall some musical settings, too.

    Yes, a proper missal is far and away the best way to go. However for newcomers, or as backup for when you don’t have a missal handy, those red booklets are wonderful.

  22. Deborah says:

    I agree that a personal hand Missal is very edifying for both the ordinary and extraordinary form of Holy Mass.

    There is a reason why most of the faithful don’t use personal Missals….they don’t know how.

    A suggestion for priests and lay catechists is to offer classes on how to use the hand Missal. If you already have youth and young adults’ groups at your parish then perhaps have an evening or two for explaining and practicing.

    I have personally witnessed many of the lay faithful whom I have taught, from the early age of 6 years old, grow to have a great love for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass as a result of using personal Missals. There is a sense that they know what they are doing and truly feel like they are participating in the liturgical action “with thy whole heart and with thy whole soul and with thy whole mind and with thy whole strength” ~St. Mark 12:30.

    From this there is the natural flow of mystagogical catechetics where the sacred mysteries of Holy Mass can be explained and ultimately lead one to a deeper interior conversion of the heart toward God.

  23. Nick says:

    I find it ironic that the ones encouraging us to go buy a missal didnt actually buy one them self, they received it as a gift. I have nothing against that whatsoever, but I do think people should also think about those who simply cant afford it (especially if there are multiple people in their family, 4x$60 = $240).

    Im in Portland Oregon and thankfully I can afford to buy one, but I am holding off until there is a regularly scheduled TLM in the area.

    One problem thus far for most people is that many (most?) local Catholic bookstores are not carrying the 1962, so if a person wants it they have to track one down online. I dont like putting my credit card number online, but I will if I have to. What is really annoying though is that I dont like to buy things which I havnt personally touched to see if I like it. It wasnt until a month or so ago that I was fortunately able to leaf through a fellow Catholic’s Baronius, but I was disappointed that it didnt have the ‘sit, stand, kneel’ instructions, though overall it was very nice.

    I think more and more people will buy their own though, especially when the local Catholic bookstores recognize demand and start carrying them.

  24. Derik Castillo says:

    I started using the red booklet, and bought a Baronius missal,
    that find absolutely necessary. I am the kind of person who
    benefits from following each word of mass (it takes some practice).

    I have a soft briefcase with a Missal (both EF, and OF), Liber Usualis,
    rosary, devotional, and server training lessons. I never go to church
    without it. I arrive to church early and do my devotions, and
    then I bury my nose in the missal.

    The propers of Mass are very important, and even when I understand
    that there are people who prefer to watch the celebration, I believe
    that all propers for a given Mass are a coherent unity, thus being
    a good idea to read them all.

  25. Peg says:

    Having had the opportunity to attend daily T. Mass for many years, I just want to encourage those who seem to find their heads buried in the Missal during most of the Mass.
    After a while you will find that many of the prayers become memorized so you can say them and watching the priest at the same time.
    Over the years my husband and I have also been successful in obtaining used (sometimes new)Missals at used book stores.

  26. Marysann says:

    I bought the new Baronius missal, and it is beautiful. Now all I need is the opportunity to attend the TLM. We live in Israel, and I have not heard that the Mass of 1962 has been celebrated anywhere in the Holy Land.

  27. TerryC says:

    I realize that this is a very TLM leaning crowd but I have to ask what about the N.O.? What missals are available for the Ordinary Rite? Are there missals which include Latin and English and cover all three years of the readings. I suppose only Latin for the ordinaries is really necessary, since the readings are always in English, even at the few places that Latin is used for the other parts.
    We used the disposable missalettes, after a fashion. Each day is a single sheet and gives a synopsis of the readings, instead of the readings themselves. Father claims the word is to be heard not read at Mass, and so prefers only the reader (and he for the Gospel) have the full text. So the mini-missalette is his idea.

  28. schoolman says:

    “I realize that this is a very TLM leaning crowd but I have to ask what about the N.O.? What missals are available for the Ordinary Rite?”

    Don’t buy one…at least not yet. Probably a good idea to wait until the new translations come into effect.

  29. Matt Q says:

    Good discussion and sharing. I believe the Baronius Missal to be the better choice. While I haven’t had the opportunity to compare the Angelus Press Missal ( and I take nothing away from them ), from what I have been able to gather about the Baronius one and the way Father Z described it a couple of weeks ago ( it being heavier and the binding more firm, better cover, and the pages thin but sturdier, all an improvement over Baronius’ first edition ), Baronius sounds the better way to go. IMO.

  30. Rouxfus says:

    Regarding the idea of postponing buying a Missal for the Ordinary use of the Mass, since they’re coming out with new translations: I have found the monthly Magnificat publication to be an excellent resource for increasing my prayer life. I originally subscribed as a handy replacement for the USCCB daily readings web page for Daily Mass. Magnificat has taken me beyond that – it includes lots of material on the lives of the saints, and a daily prayer office for Morning and Evening prayers very similar to (but not the same) as the Liturgy of the Hours. I have enjoyed making those prayers part of my daily prayer routine.

    We also just subscribed to their Magnifikids. When the first set arrived for March a few days ago our kids (5 & 7) were so exited to be able to use them, but disappointed to learn that they’d have to wait till March. It will be a nice Easter treat for them.

    For me, following along the text of the Order of the Mass in the Magnificat – especially during the Eucharistic Prayer, helps me from zoning out at the most important part of the service. I have also picked up on the fact that while our Associate Pastor ALWAYS (tediously) prays EP2 and uses the “Christ has died” proclamation of the mystery of our faith, I appreciate that our Pastor rotates through all four, including the Canon (EP1), and many of the variations on the proclamation of the mystery.

    While I enjoy the Extraordinary use accompanied by my ’62 Baronius Missal, I must say I’ve developed more appreciation for the beauty of Ordinary use of the mass lately, after reading a book which goes into detail about it called “The How To Book of the Mass“. It provides interesting quotations from church fathers and the Apostolic Constitutions (ca.350 AD) showing how early faithful celebrated the Mass.

  31. Josiah says:

    I have two missals: The first is a 1965 St.Joseph daily missal,that I use for the EF.I got it before my parish had the EF,and I loved it. It has preparation before mass, and the thanksgiving after mass, taken from the priest’s prayers from the Roman Missal. In the back, are the music for the responses at mass, three mass settings,and prayers for morning,evening,and before confession, the stations of the cross and the rosary.
    For the Novus Ordo, I have a 1999 St.Joseph Sunday missal. The illustrations are nice, and it has the stations of the cross, the rosary,and prayers before/after mass and Communion.Holyday masses are included, as are the feasts which may replace a Sunday.

    But there’s a big drawback: There are commentaries for the mass themes and a biblical commentary for all the readings. They are the most liberal, heretical things I’ve ever had the misfortune to look at.The commentary for the first Sunday of lent says that the whole genesis story never happened,gives a vague semi-pelagianistic definition of sin, and denies the divine authorship of the gospels. The commentary for holy thursday seems to be the source of the “community emphasis” you see in most masses, since it says that the vertical dimension is unnecessary. I won’t speak of it’s commentaries on Corpus Christi.
    Are there any traditional,or at least orthodox hand missal for the ordinary form of the mass?

  32. mary martha says:

    I have a copy of the Angelus Missal and I love it.

    Beyond just following along at Mass it is very useful as a sort of general book of Catholic information.

    I was raised in a very ‘modern’ felt banner type of parish and there are all sorts of things that I was never taught which are quite well explained int he missal.

    The thick book with all the ribbons can be a bit intimidating. Fr. Phillips at St. John Cantius offered classes on how to use a missal a couple of years ago and I found that invaluable.

  33. Magda says:

    I’ve been attending the TLM for many years now, and have studied the Ordinary pretty thoroughly to the point where I know most of it virtually off by heart. So I generally prefer to pray and meditate on what is actually happening, or related matters, than to follow along in the text. Personally I find that when I do read it, I tend to succomb to the danger of getting my head stuck in a book, rather than really praying. So although I always bring my missal with me, I generally only use if for the Propers at daily mass.

    That said, I do think people should try and own a missal not least so that they can properly prepare themselves for the Mass – including meditating on the Propers before or after Mass.

    Though I have a couple of versions, including the Baronius, I actually prefer the Angelus Press version – its a more manageable size to hold in your hands, the Latin is generally in larger text, the inclusion of bell signs etc is helpful, and it has a nice commentary on the mass in the sidebars.

    I should note that I also tend to be one of those people who bring their missal but also take the one pager with the Propers – it saves a lot of page flicking between the Proper, Ordinary, and Kyriale at the back, and is generally easier to read than any of my small collection of missals….

  34. Geoffrey says:

    Josiah said: “Are there any traditional, or at least orthodox hand missal for the ordinary form of the mass?”

    Try the “Daily Roman Missal”. It is edited by Rev. James Socias and published by Scepter Publishers, which is the publishing arm of Opus Dei.

    The Order of Mass is in Latin and English, as are the Entrance Antiphons, Gospel Acclamation Verse, Communion Antiphon, and Response for the Responsorial Psalm for each Mass. For commentaries, it uses quotes from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and you can’t go wrong there!

    I have used this one for many years and I am very happy with it. It helps keep me focused during “creative” liturgies that are so common here in California!

  35. Tony says:

    “I think it’s particularly funny that I seem to be the only member of our Latin Mass choir who has a regular missal, which is silly, because the missal is especially invaluable for choir members. The pews where the choir sit are already piled with multiple books and pieces of music, and the put-down-pick-up game becomes considerably easier when you have the text of the ordinary and the propers, plus the musical settings of the ordinary all in one book, together with your before-Mass readings and your devotions for before and after Communion!”

    Golly – I am a choir member who does have a baronius missal, but the opportunity to actually use it whilst chanting the music makes use of it redundant most of the time. Plus, our TLM here in Canberra (FSSP) also has the red Coalition for Eccelesia Dei missalettes and Propers sheets – so itI find it much easier to hold that single sheet to follow the Gospel. Our choir also often has sheets with the gregorian neumes with translations above, so that assists greatly, too. There is a lot going on for choir memebers, apropos the Mass, and it really takes a concerted act of the will to ‘participate’ in an actually active way and yet still internalise the prayer of the Mass one is singing. I find it helps to read through the Propers ahead of each Sunday Mass so as not to be overly distracted in the performance of one’s office as a chorister by referring continuously to another object (read, missal).

  36. Kathleen says:

    I purchased a 1953 St. Joseph Daily Missal (republished in 2004) for $30 plus
    shipping. It does not have sit/stand/kneel directions or illustrations, but
    I like it because it is the type I used decades ago, and because it is not
    as large and cumbersome as some that I have seen. I attend the EF in Kansas
    City, KS, where many people use their own missals.

  37. Maureen says:

    Re: choir and missal

    Yeah, it’s difficult to juggle all the books and folders, especially since we sit on chairs and not pews, and don’t have music stands.

    Re: ribbons

    If people have difficulty with ribbons, do what choir people do — use Post-It notes! (This was in fact one of the first uses found for Post-It notes, as one of the 3M guys was in a choir.) There are thin little tab ones that come in all different colors in a pack. Some people like them at the top of the page; I put them at the side myself. But either way, you can clearly mark all the parts of the Mass, readings, hymns, etc. with appropriate colored tabs. When the stickum starts to wear off, you just pull off another tab of the same color and use that. You can also write on the tabs, but I’ve never found that necessary.

    I bought a pack of Post-It tabs about five years ago for two bucks or less, and still haven’t used it up.

    Another good use for Post-It notes (the non-tab kind) is for covering up things you don’t want to read or say or sing. (If you’re singing verses 2-4, you just cover up the first word of verses 1-3. If you’re not supposed to sing the descant, you cover it up.) This saves a lot of trouble, and doesn’t damage or change the book.

  38. Dionysius says:

    I bought a Baronius Daily Missal last year and it is very good indeed. The only major criticism I would make (and maybe I am wrong) is that by far the the most common Preface is located with many other prefaces rather than within the normal Canon, thus producing some discontinuity and extra page turning. As an Australian, I am also slightly disappointed that the current edition does not have the relevant Feasts etc for Australia and NZ/Pacific. Although it is easy to say this, how hard would it have been to include all the relevant Masses, feasts and prayers for all the English-speaking countries, rather than just the US, Canada, England, Wales and Scotland? Plus (as an aside) it always slightly disheartens me at the end of Low Mass to have Pope Leo’s prayers on the opposite page to the Prayer for the Queen. Australians are overwhelmingly not English Catholics, are not descendants of recusants and have no religious regard for a schismatic Queen/King, albeit we regard him/her as our Head of State.

    The other issue I have is – I have four children. My Baronius Daily Missal cost me nearly AUD$100. Is there a 1962 SUNDAY Missal available that would provide my children (and me) with all the resources necessary to celebrate Sundays and Holy Days without spending a fortune? The Missaletes are good but hardly permanent.

  39. Matt Q says:

    Dionysius asked:

    “The other issue I have is – I have four children. My Baronius Daily Missal cost me nearly AUD$100. Is there a 1962 SUNDAY Missal available that would provide my children (and me) with all the resources necessary to celebrate Sundays and Holy Days without spending a fortune? The Missaletes are good but hardly permanent.”

    Yes, there are Tridentine Missals available for less, unfortunately they are not precisely 1962. Checking out eBay may help ( as I have seen children’s Latin Mass Missals ) but you would have to make comparisons with rubrics and prayers so as to be as accurate as possible.

    The core of it pretty much the same. It’s along the same lines as having a Novus Ordo Missal which works just fine but there are slight variations to it as compared to the present Missal. Both Novus Ordo Missals will soon be obsolete, however, but I do not anticipate the 1962 Missal becoming too useless any time soon albeit the change to the Good Friday prayer for the Jews.

    As far as the prayers for the Queen, I am glad you are adult enough to accept it. We in America have had only one Catholic president and he was philandering profligate. What I am saying is that none of our presidents have been our religion and we tend not to care because it’s the values and principles our head of state upholds. The average Catholic is not losing sleep over the fact the president isn’t Catholic nor that there isn’t one anywhere in the near future either. ;-) As a born-and-raised American in Los Angeles, I have no problem praying for the Queen with as much enthusiasm as any of our presidents. God bless them all.

  40. Chris says:

    I can remember when I was 8 years old in 1969 my mother was given a pearl coloured Daily Missal as a gift. It was considered an expensive gift.
    Daily missals were never cheap and good leaher ones with gold leaf trim were pricey.
    Since Vat II, the Catholic Church has helped destroy many a fine forest with the endless pieces of paper we now have to hold evey week at Mass. Certainly a lot more pages over a few years than a book.
    $50.00 for a book is cheap these days.
    What is the problem. Incidenatally even a Novus Ordo Daily Missal in English is pricey and seems to be revised every few years. At least the Old Mass does not change that often!

Comments are closed.