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Catholic Review of: The Mass of the Roman Rite

Item Details

Author:  Joseph A. Jungmann, S.J.

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This item received 5 stars overall. (04/28/2014)

Orthodoxy: Completely orthodox.
Reading Level: Advanced

 Stuart DunnBy Stuart Dunn (AL) - See all my reviews

Synopsis

Re-print of a thorough history and explanation of the Mass of the Roman Rite

Evaluator Comments

This is a two volume set that totals over 1,000 pages, and if that wasn't intimidating enough, it has blocks of Latin in it with a smattering of Greek words. Reprinted by Ave Maria Press, "The Mass of the Roman Rite" offers you a chronological history of how the Mass evolved through the centuries, the different forms of the Mass, and a detailed description of all the parts of the Mass. A chapter was also added that was unavailable in previous editions which discusses the commingling of the Eucharistic species.

 

This series reads like a textbook, and that is both good and bad. It is good because each chapter offers great detail and research and explains to you the subject in a straightforward manner. It is bad because the text of each page is half  content and half footnotes. This can begin to bog the reader down while reading. Also, as I said above, there is a lot of Latin and Greek in the text, and if you don't read either language, you miss a lot.

 

 My favorite section in this book was the history of the Mass and how it evolved over time. Some people tend to think that the Liturgy was established by the early Church and hasn't changed since it's origin. However, it has been an evolving creature, for lack of a better word. This is both good and bad. I will not discuss the merits and flaws of such an evolution though. It was just fascinating to me to see what has changed, what has stayed the same, and where the origins of different parts of the Mass came from.

 

I would give this book 5 stars for content and quality, but I would also include one BIG caveat. This is not light reading by any means. It takes a special mind to read and even halfway appreciate this work. I am not that special, and I don't feel I even scratched the surface of what this treasure has to offer. This book is academic, scholastic, and spiritual meat. Maybe one day I will get some teeth and I can try and chew through this book again.

 


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