I think it is of upmost importance to participate at Holy Mass also using a sound “hand missal”. A good hand missal, whether of the TLM of the Novus Ordo, can enrich your interior receptivity.
A while back I reviewed the hand missal published by Baronius Press.
Now let’s look at the hnd missal published by Angelus Press, the publishing arm of the SSPX. For the purposes of this review, the fact that it comes from the SSPX’s printing concern matters not a whit to me. I am grateful that they sent me a copy for my review.
Buy this missal HERE.
First, let’s have a look general look at the cover and binding.
There are five ribbons and the pages are gilded. the gilding isn’t like it was in the old days, but that’s no surprise. It is still pretty good. The binding of the new volume was still pretty tight, but it seems durable from what I can tell. That is very important in such a book.
I still have to hold it open with my fingers for the shot, but it will loosen up.
You can see that the pages well laid out. There is both English and Latin side by side. The black ink is dark and well contrasted with the paper which is slightly yellowish.
Here is the basic information for the translation and the commentaries. You can see that the paper is very thin, to keep the book a reasonable size, but the paper seems sturdy.
NB: They are in their 3rd printing for November 2007.
There are good sections for devotions and private prayers.
There are propers for the USA and Canada.
In the back there is a Kyriale. I hope that means that the SSPX wants people in the pews to sing along… (which I doubt). Seriously, this could help in the formation of a small schola: you would not have to buy too many more books to get it started.
I liked this feature in the back: pages for you to write in special events like baptisms, marriages, ordinations, deaths, and your own special intentions. If someone were to use this at St. Agnes Church in St. Paul, however, that ordinations page would have to have an extension added.
Here is the first pages of the Ordinary. you can see that they use red ink for the rubrics and comments.
Let’s now compare the Angelus Press version with the Baronius Press version.
The Baronius Press version is a little smaller, but they are roughly the same thickness and feel in the hand.
The Baronius binding is somewhat subtler.
Let us see them open and next to each other. The Angelus Press edition is on the top, Baronius below.
Click the image below for a bigger view.
Note that the Baronius edition has somwhat whiter paper.
I don’t know if that would help in a darker church or, in a brigher space it might annoy.
The gilt on the pages of the Baronius is marginally better accomplished. The Baronius edition has 6 ribbons and the Angelus version 5.
In sum, the Angelus Press book is very good. I like the commentaries and the extra sections for devotions.
I did not do a side by side comparison of the translation, so at this point I have nothing to say about that.
This book is very useful and should prove to resist years of being hauled around in bags or in the hand.
I am sure that some of you readers will have your own experienecs and preferences, which you can post below.