I received word that the 1952 edition of the Rituale Romanum is being sold in a so-called "study edition". This is the edition in use at the time of the Vatican Council. It is, of course, the Latin edition.
Summorum Pontificum derestricted the use of the Roman Ritual as well as the Roman Missal. Pastors may choose to use the older Rituale Romanum for administering the sacraments, blessing, etc.
Frankly, this is a great boon, especially in the line of blessings, since the newer, post-Conciliar De Benedictionibus ("Book of Blessings") is a total disaster.
The "study edition" of the 1962 Roman Missal is a nicely bound book with ribbons and the rubrics in red. It could be used at the altar. I am sure the new Ritual is the same.
Sometimes I get questions from people about what they can give priests for birthdays, Christmas, anniversaries, etc. You might consider these books, especially the Rituale Romanum.
They can be ordered from paxbooks.com.
There is also a reprint of a Latin-only 1944 edition of the traditional Roman Ritual. I don’t know what changes might have been made to the 1955 edition. Perhaps someone here can educate us. My suspicion is that there were not many changes and, if there were, they might have had something to do with the funeral rites… but that is a guess. This seems to be a handy pocket edition. Useful for gravesides and other occasions.
Another option for the Rituale Romanum is the Latin/English volumes with the translation of the late Fr. Weller, which have been reprinted. This is in three volumes.
The first is The Roman Ritual [Rituale Romanum]: Vol 1: The Sacraments & Processions [Latin/English] then The Roman Ritual [Rituale Romanum]: Vol 2: Christian Burial, Exorcism, Reserved Blessings, etc [Latin/English]. Finally, Vol 3 has the blessings: Roman Ritual (Blessings, Volume 3)
You can get all three in a set at a reduced price.
A word about the blessing issue.
The new book, De Benedictionibus represents the very worst tendencies of post-Conciliar liturgical ideology and innovation. The forward in the book, explaining its theory – always read forwards! – shows the will of the compilers to detroy the distinction between invocative and constitutive blessings. The former calls God’s blessing down on a person and the later constitutes things, places, etc, as blessed. Those blessings remove things from the temporal sphere and places them in the realm of the sacred. The new book, in eliminating that distinction, eliminates the constitutive blessing. If you read the prayers of the Book of Blessings, as the English edition is called, you will find that the prayers don’t really bless anything. They basically suggest that God might bless some who looks at the statue, the bell, the medal, without actually contituting the object as a blessed thing.
This is a grave problem.
There might be two, perhaps, blessings in the new book that, among the myriad options might bless something because the stick to the old language of the old books. Also, the "blessings" in the new book also include absurd "liturgy of the word" preambles, on the model of all the other post-Conciliar rites. Of all the post-Conciliar books, I think De Benedictionibus – The Book of Blessings – should simply be ash-canned and we should use the older Rituale Romanum. I simply won’t use the new book.
On a similar track, one would need to consider what was done to the new rite of exorcism, which is part of the Rituale Romanum.
This is another grave problem.
Even at the time of the release of the newer rite of exorcism, the Congregation’s then Prefect, Card Medina, understood that there were problems with it and, at the same time, said that bishops could authorize priests also to use the older rite, in the older Rituale Romanum. Very wise.
Folks, our lives should be constantly filled with blessings. That isn’t just a happy thought, but a reminder to ask for blessings from the priest!
There should be, ideally, many more priests around so that our contact with them was far more common and their blessings could inform our days, the things they bless could be of help in our daily lives. We should use sacramentals often and everywhere … for the enemy attacks us often and everywhere. Thus, we need more and more priests who understand the difference between the older and new books, with their different theologies, and we must therefore put the right books into their hands.
You might consider making sure that your priests have these good tools. The Weller set is particularly good for men whose Latin is perhaps not so strong.
Do yourselves and many others a favor.