February 28, 2012

New edition of the Divine Office

By Father Rocky Hoffman *

Is there going to be a new edition of the Divine Office? I ask because numerous saints were canonized during the papacy of John Paul II and the feast of Divine Mercy as well.

The Divine Office, also known as the “Liturgy of the Hours,” or the Breviary, is a highly recommended resource for the prayer of the faithful.  Ordained clerics and consecrated religious are obliged to pray this prayer of the Church on a daily basis.  The current English version was translated and published in 1975.  Given the release of the “Editio Typica Tertio” (Third Typical Edition) of the Roman Missal in 2002, notable among other reasons for the inclusion of new feast days and saints days as you mention,  one would expect a new edition and English translation of the Divine Office some time in the future.  However, things do not move quickly.

While the Third Typical Edition of the Roman Missal was approved by John Paul II in 2000, we did not start using it in English until the First Sunday of Advent, 2011; that’s 11 years later. The most recent supplement to the Divine Office (2005) is available in Latin and incorporates the new feast days and saints days.  If I were a betting man, I would say it will not be available in English until 2016.

Rev. Francis J. Hoffman, JCD (Fr. Rocky) is Executive Director of Relevant Radio.  Ordained as a priest for Opus Dei in 1992 by Blessed John Paul II, he holds a doctorate in Canon Law from the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross, an MBA from the University of Notre Dame, and a BA in History from Northwestern University.  His Question and Answer column appears in several Catholic newspapers and magazines across the country.

* Catholic News Agency columns are opinion and do not necessarily express the perspective of the agency.

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