A Commentary On The Book of Psalms
Authored by Saint Robert Bellarmine, Translated by John O’Sullivan D.D.
7″ x 10″ (17.78 x 25.4 cm)
Black & White on White paper
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As the Psalms of David form the principal part of the authorized prayers of the Church, it is most desirable that all the faithful should know their literal and mystic meaning. The Clergy and Religious, who are bound to recite the Divine Office, must daily read many of the Psalms. If, in addition to the meaning of the words, they know the historic sense of the Psalm, and its spiritual application to Christ and to his kingdom, they will, according to the counsel of St. Paul, pray with the spirit, and they will also pray with the understanding. (1 Cor. 15:15)
In the early ages of the Church, the Psalms were so familiar to the laity, that it was found impossible to adopt the better version, made by St. Jerome from the Hebrew, for all had the older version by heart. In these days the Psalms are little used in the private devotions of lay Catholics; and forms of prayer, which have no authoritative sanction and which are often little recommendable either for sentiment or expression, are used instead of those which have been dictated by the Holy Ghost. The reason of this notable change in the practice of the faithful must be that they do not understand the Psalms. Any attempt to render them more intelligible, and thus to restore their use, is most praiseworthy. The Commentary of the venerable Cardinal Bellarmine is remarkable for clearness of exposition, and for suggesting the spiritual meanings best calculated to awaken and cherish devotion. Archdeacon O’Sullivan, P.P. of Kenmare, and V.G. of the Diocese of Kerry, has undertaken to translate this Commentary, omitting those portions which are purely philosophical, or which relate to the discrepancy and reconciliation of the texts and versions. We have seen a portion of the manuscript, and we believe that the translation is faithful. It will supply a most easy and ready means of understanding the Psalms, of appreciating their beauty, and of entering into the spirit of the inspired song.
V DAVID MORIARTY
Bishop of Kerry.