Saturday, April 09, 2011

Missalettes: pro or con?

With the new, improved translation of the Mass coming this fall, I'm thinking very seriously about adding pew missalettes (may be a trademarked term by J.S. Paluch Co., I mean this in the generic sense) at the one parish that doesn't have them.

This gives me the opportunity to look at the various versions of them.

I've found three so far:

OCP: cheapest; has many options, including a Spanish mini-missal. Cover art is reasonably good.

Paluch/WLP: next cheapest; cheap option has boring cover art; what we use now at one parish. Has an edition with a Spanish insert, adds $1 per copy per year.

Leaflet Missal Co.: much more expensive as far as I can tell; $35 per year, not volume discount--seems geared for individual use. Ghastly artwork. No mention of anything Spanish at all.

I know the Mass settings in these are usually dreadful. We never use them. But it would be nice to get one that actually had music and Mass settings we wanted to use.

So...before I settle on one of these, any suggestions?


Anonymous said...

My 2cents:

I dislike OCP immensely. The music is terrible, terrible. They try not to say male pronouns. Many hymns are watered down. You can't even sing "Whatsoever You Do to the Least of my brothers" You have to say "people". It doesn't flow at all in addition to being a downright silly change.

Do not get the annual OCP book. It does not have Sunday reading text or detail of liturgical rites on say Good Friday. The annual OCP book also does not have daily responsorial psalms and antiphons, which some monthly missalettes have. The people do not follow the mass with these books at all. There's nothing to follow. I don't know what OCP's monthly books are like in detail, but I recall they have Sunday reading texts.

Father Gregory said...

Father, I'm against missalettes of all kinds. They look bad in the pews after a month. We become enslaved by their editors to use what they want us to use and what they want to sell. I print the readings in the worship leaflet every Sunday, so when the new translation comes out, I am going to just buy a new hymnal/mass book w/o readings and get rid of Worship 3rd.

Emily said...

Have you looked into Liturgical Press' offerings at all? A campus minister friend of mine uses them, and he was impressed by both the content and their customer service.

Rosemary said...

As a lay person, I agree with Father Gregory.

marleythedog said...

I'm a fan of the WLP missalettes we use currently. They're a good size with decent readability, and I could care less about the cover art.

I've been to parishes with OCP missals, and think they're lousy. Poor fonts, the layout of the pages are terrible (for some reason they're a fan of placing all the readings in two-column layouts), and I think it's safe to conclude that anything OCP is a major risk of allowing hippie music to creep into our church.

That all being said, I would be for advocating that people by their own missals instead of seasonal missalettes. I feel like publishing new ones every quarter is a waste of paper (since the readings just repeat every 3 years anyway). Maybe the money the church puts toward the missals could instead fund a subsidy to help needy parishoners get their own, longer-lasting personal missals.

- Chase

Mike Roesch said...

I second the suggestion of Liturgical Press (although I probably am Emily's campus minister friend). I strongly suggest contacting them; they are very helpful, and provided me with samples of their entire lineup.

If you're looking for just the Sunday readings (with a Psalm setting), there is this, which is an extremely affordable option, though the pricing on the website may be off since it is discounted for the remainder of the current year:

If you want a seasonal book with Sundays as well as weekdays, there is this:

The seasonal book with some music is here:

And finally, a three-year paperback hymnal that can be paired with any of the above is here:

Fr Martin Fox said...


Thanks for your help.

Those from LP look good, but they may be pricier than the Paluch/WLP version we buy now.

Since I posted this, I got a sample "pew card" in the mail that looks very good, and I am leaning toward getting those for both parishes, and punting on any change in missalettes. Meanwhile, the question of new hymnals can wait a year or so, after all this other stuff sorts out.

I'd love it if Magnificat published a missalette...ok I've got to buckle down and do my taxes!

JD said...

Another thought-- the readings at Mass aren't meant to be read silently at one's seat. They are meant to be proclaimed and received. Why do we laity need to read the readings at all--- can't we just listen?

Anonymous said...

It would be wonderful to just sit and listen. However, some of us have a hearing loss and a good many of the lectors do a rather shabby job of proclaiming. Also, the acoustics at some churches is atrocious. Missalettes are very helpful to a lot of folks, mostly the elderly and those with a hearing loss.
If you can hear ok, give thanks. For the rest of us, let us have the missalettes.