Saturday, May 17, 2008

New English Bible

The New English Bible; or, Bishop Sheen nods

The late Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen claimed sometime during the 1970s that the New English Bible (NEB) was the most beautiful of all the modern translations. Now, I've owned my NEB for roughly four days, and have encountered some pretty quirky choices of translation. See the two examples cited in the previous post.

In addition, there's "a mighty wind" for "the Spirit of God" in Genesis 1; "young woman" for "virgin" in Isaiah 7:14; "bitter enemies of thy temple tear me in pieces" in place of "zeal for thy house consumes me" in Psalm 69; "they have hacked off my hands and feet" in Psalm 22 ("pierced" is the usual verb); and, in the Song of Songs, "majestic as the starry heavens" where one would expect "terrible as an army with banners."

On the other hand, there is at least one advantage that the NEB has over its 1989 revision, the REB (Revised English Bible): in the Epistles, it retains "brother" where the REB has "fellow-Christian." "Fellow-Christian" is, of course, a gesture toward inclusivity, but it loses the familial dimension of "brother." One may as well say "co-partisan"!

So, while I continue to admire Archbishop Sheen, I think it's safe to say that he missed a few of the troublesome spots in the NEB translation.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

New English Bible

I am an asphodel in Sharon,
    a lily growing in the valley.

Song of Songs 2:1, New English Bible

[...] he revived me with apricots;
    for I was faint with love.

Song of Songs 2:5, New English Bible


Possibly upcoming ...

Asphodels and apricots. The New English Bible.


O factum male!


He left out Oconomowoc ...

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Fr Groeschel

The Catholic Church will always include people that you and I would consider disreputable.

Benedict J. Groeschel, CFR, Healing the Original Wound, p. 147

(I consider myself disreputable!)

Monday, May 12, 2008

Muscular boy?

She's a muscular boy must to avoid ...


the 60th of his 95 poems

dive for dreams
or a slogan may topple you
(trees are their roots
and wind is wind)

trust your heart
if the seas catch fire
(and live by love
though the stars walk backward)

honour the past
and welcome the future
(and dance your death
away at this wedding)

never mind a world
with its villains or heroes
(for god likes girls
and tomorrow and the earth)


Misheard '60s song-lyric
from Herman's Hermits

Original: She's a must-to-avoid ...

What I heard: She's a muscular boy ...

Sunday, May 11, 2008



Veni, Sancte Spiritus,
et emitte caelitus
lucis tuae radium.

Veni, pater pauperum,
veni, dator munerum
veni, lumen cordium.

Consolator optime,
dulcis hospes animae,
dulce refrigerium.

In labore requies,
in aestu temperies
in fletu solatium.

O lux beatissima,
reple cordis intima
tuorum fidelium.

Sine tuo numine,
nihil est in homine,
nihil est innoxium.

Lava quod est sordidum,
riga quod est aridum,
sana quod est saucium.

Flecte quod est rigidum,
fove quod est frigidum,
rege quod est devium.

Da tuis fidelibus,
in te confidentibus,
sacrum septenarium.

Da virtutis meritum,
da salutis exitum,
da perenne gaudium.

(Translation here.)