A Primer in Catholic Missals – Part I

A Primer in Catholic Missals – Part I

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When you have customers come into your store who hold up two different missals, can you give them an intelligent explanation of what distinguishes each? If not, this guide is for you. If you are in the market for a Missal, take this information with you when you go shopping.

The first question that needs to be asked is whether the customer is looking for a Tridentine or post-Vatican II missal.

Tridentine Missals

Tridentine missals are used for the Mass as celebrated before Vatican II and still licitly celebrated throughout the world. There are several options for Tridentine missals. All of the Tridentine Missals contain Latin and English on opposite pages for just about everything except the readings. The St. Joseph missal is the exception in that it is entirely English except for the ordinary of the Mass.

The St. Andrew Daily MissalSt. Andrew Daily Missal

The St. Andrew Daily is one of the most popular Tridentine missals. This missal was the only one in print for a very long time so your customers are likely familiar with it. Unfortunately, this missal was last updated in 1945 so several Mass changes, especially the major changes for Holy Week are not in this version. This missal is available in a red-edged version and a gold-edged version.

The St. Joseph Daily Missal

The St. Joseph Daily Missal is almost entirely English and was last updated in 1953. It does contain English/Latin for the ordinary of the Mass but all other prayers are just English. It sufferes from the same deficiency as the St. Andrew Missal in that it lacks the changes to Holy Week from 1955. The one thing that sets this missal apart is the reproduction of famous works of art (in black and white) in addition to the standard woodcuts and line drawings found in other missals.

The shortcomings of these missals can be addressed with the Sacred Triduum Missal which contains all of the Mass text for Holy Week.

1962 Daily Missal1962 Daily Missals

Due to the increased interest in the Tridentine Mass, two publishers have released daily missals updated with the last Mass changes before Vatican II.

These missals have very similar content but the 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal has an imitation leather cover while the Daily missals from Boronius Press have genuine leather covers and come in white and black.

For customers who just want an inexpensive way to follow the Mass, there is a booklet available. This booklet is also available in wedding and funeral editions.

Stay tuned for part two on Post Vatican II Missals.

Preparing Your Catholic Store for Summer – Thinking About Promotion

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It’s almost that time – the time between First Communion season and Christmas when there seems to be a vast span of days where the customers only trickle in. This year, instead of gritting your teeth and watching your bottom line fall through the floor, be proactive and do something about it. Here are some tips to get you through the summer.

  1. Hold book fairs at parishes. It’s free advertising and if you tithe part of the proceeds to the parish, you build goodwill.
  2. Write an article for your local Catholic paper. Things have slowed down so take some time to write something interesting for your Catholic paper. Make sure your byline mentions your store. If you write well, maybe you could be a regular columnist.
  3. Ask your local Catholic paper to write an article about your store. Don’t laugh, they might do it. I asked our local paper to write an article about the three Catholic stores in town and they agreed. I used the interview as an opportunity to showcase what sets us apart from the other stores. Talk about great free advertising!
  4. Check your prices. I know this is tedious, but if you don’t keep up with vendor price changes, your bottom line is vanishing. We have received several letters from jewelry vendors lately saying that prices are going up. If you haven’t received these notices, call them and ask what changes are coming and when they start. Also, take a look at the pricing on other products. Are you undercharging for some items?
  5. Start a book or movie discussion group at the store. Local parishes will likely give you free advertising in their bulletins for events like this and you get more customers.
  6. Get an online store. I personally recommend the Aquinas and More Storefront Program as a quick and comparatively inexpensive way to get your store on the Internet. 80% of our sales are from the Web! Imagine what a website has the potential to do for your store.

I hope these tips will prove useful as you start the summer.

God bless,

Ian Rutherford, President
Aquinas and More Catholic Goods
Rebuilding Catholic culture one soul at a time.