Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Update on the Publication of the Opera Omnia of Thomas Aquinas

Although this post is not strictly related to liturgy, it fits in well with one of the general aims of NLM, namely, the need for a return to the great theological sources so that the new liturgical movement may remain firmly grounded in the Catholic Tradition. Indeed, one of the tragedies of the original liturgical movement, particularly as it entered its cancer phase in the 1960s, seems to have been an inadequate and inconsistent rootedness in dogmatic theology, as the craze for antiquity took over and blinded many to the profound contributions of the scholastics.

The Aquinas Institute for the Study of Sacred Doctrine, located in Lander, Wyoming, embarked a few years ago on a monumental project to publish the complete works of Saint Thomas in a uniform edition. The text is given in parallel Latin-English columns (the Latin edition is the best one available and the English translations have been reviewed by an editorial team for accuracy). The volumes are hardcovers with sewn bindings and gold-stamped covers and spines. We have completed the first phase of our publishing project with the following sets:
The Summa Theologiae (8 vols.)
The masterful Scripture commentaries of the Angelic Doctor—greatly praised by Leo XIII and many other popes, acknowledged as the pinnacle of their genre, and yet bizarrely hard to come by until now, if available at all—are the first projects we took on, in recognition of the primacy of the Word of God in sacred theology. Future plans include all of Thomas’s Old Testament commentaries as well. Preachers, take note: rarely will you find more penetrating and useful comments on the Lectionary readings than what you get in the pages of St. Thomas!

Having published Matthew, John, Paul, and the Summa, we are now turning our attention to the rest of the Opera Omnia—and here is where we can definitely use your help! We keep the cost of our volumes low to make them widely available, but as a result, the only way we can manage the initial print run of volumes is to obtain funding through donations. Donors receive a complimentary copy of the volumes they help to fund.

Go to our website to use your donation as a vote for what will be printed next—and to be among the first to receive a copy of that set. Once a volume has been funded, this offer of a complimentary copy will cease for that volume, and we will then sell it via Amazon. (For multi-volume sets like the Sentences commentary, donors will receive each volume as it is printed. We are starting with Book IV, which contains Thomas's lengthiest treatment of the sacraments and the liturgy. Work on Book IV is, in fact, well under way.)

We have editors and translators lined up for most of the works of Aquinas, but we will focus our efforts on the works that are most funded by you, our readers. Please spread the word by sharing this article with any of your colleagues or friends who might be interested. (Below are some photos from the Summa and Pauline volumes.)

Ite ad Thomam!

The Aquinas Institute

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