Many thanks to two readers for alerting me that Catholic Book Publishing Corporation has now released the complete New Catholic Version of the Bible. This translation has been in progress for several years, with a team of scholars working under the direction of Fr. Jude Winkler, OFM. Here’s a brief synopsis of the history:

  • The Psalms were published in 2002 and received approval from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).
  • The New Testament was published in 2015, and Catholic Book Publishing released several editions of the New Testament and Psalms. The Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines approved the New Testament.
  • The Old Testament is now complete in 2019 and carries a nihil obstat and imprimatur. The FAQ page for the translation states that the Bishops Conference of the Philippines has also approved the Old Testament.

The publisher describes the NCV as a “formal or verbal equivalence” translation “which emphasizes a literal translation (word for word) of the Scripture text.” On the other hand, it does attempt to break apart long sentences and paragraphs that are difficult or confusing to read. It was intended to conform to the Church’s translation guidelines (in particular, this probably means that the translators were consciously following Liturgiam Authenticam’s principles of translation). The FAQ page states that the NCV was “not necessarily designed to be gender neutral.”

The complete NCV bible is now available in paperback, hardcover, and DURA-LUX (imitation leather) editions, with prices ranging from $32.95 to $55.95. For the moment, the publisher only lists giant-print editions on their website.

15 thoughts on “New Catholic Version (NCV) Complete Bible Released”

  1. Now they are calling it the NCB “New Catholic Bible.” Now there will be no confusion with the Protestant “New Century Version.”

  2. It is strange they would start with Giant Print. These are the biggest type for CBPC, and have the notes are at the end of each book. Supposedly more editions are forthcoming, so I will wait and get a full size or medium size edition.

    I was kind of surprised to see this… I never thought they would translate the whole Bible, but I am glad they did. This looks to be a worthy successor to the English Catholic Bible tradition after the Douay-Confraternity Bibles of the 1960’s which were called “New Catholic Version.” I didn’t take this new version too seriously, but now that it is a full Bible, it is time to take a closer look. My NT/Psalter should be arriving today, and from the sample pages I have read online I think it will be an enjoyable read. I have used the RSV-2CE and it’s study editions extensively for about a decade now, so it will be refreshing to read a different translation with annotations.

  3. Being non-Catholic one of the things I used to love about Catholic bibles was that they didn’t have red-letter editions. So sad to see that Catholics bibles are now incorporating this distracting feature. I wish someone could explain to me its appeal.

  4. A bit of a lack of information forthcoming from Catholic Book Publishing (which, sadly, is par for the course). No information from them as to whether other editions will be available. Also, a rep states that on their website there are sample pages of the NCB, yet there are none to be found (to these less-than-perfect eyes). No clear statement from the same rep if this NCB contains the NCV NT & Psalms or not. Of course, we’ve had less than clear information regarding other books (the changes with the Scepter Daily Bible; and the neverending wait for the Ignatius RSV-Catholic Edition Study Bible, e.g.), so, to have less than clear information from a Catholic publisher is, like a Catholic, less than perfect.

  5. An additional note. The NCB is listed on Amazon with a publication date of January 1, 2019, and is on pre-order. Nine different editions are listed at various price points. One paperback, one hardcover, and seven “leather” bound. Price points range (similar to the CPBC website) from 32.95 to 55.95 (all USD). Hefty prices.

  6. I’m surprised; I really didn’t believe they were translating the OT until just now.

    Does the OT have extensive notes like the NT and Psalms? Fewer notes? Very few or no notes?

  7. A frustrating thing that I have noticed over the years, particularly with CBP, is that they just drop these releases out of nowhere. I mean, what is anyone to really make of this bible? Seems that a good bit of money must have gone into this project, yet so very little was known about its production. Literally no promotional materials or information about this. You compare this with pretty much every newly published Protestant Bible out there, and even some Catholic/Ecumenical ones, and it is like CBP seems to think it exists sometime in the mid-twentieth century. Honestly, what is this bible? What is the point of it? How about showing the public some samples from the OT. It’s just all very weird. I can’t count the times back in the day when I was authoring my blog that I would try to reach out to them and would only hear crickets.

    And I also agree with the commenter who regretted seeing the words of Christ in red. Never a need for this. Plus, when you get into a book like the Gospel of John, there remains a number of places where one isn’t sure if it is Jesus speaking or the evangelist.

    1. I WOULD rather like to see red-letter edition that dares to get REALLY Catholic with the red-lettering: let’s not just see him speaking in the Gospels, but the words of the resurrected Christ in Pauline visions, the Book of Revelation.

      Perhaps start a Christological controversy by red-lettering Lady Wisdom in Proverbs 8.
      I guess technically it was the Holy Spirit “who has spoken through the prophets,” but maybe Abraham’s visitor in Genesis?

  8. If you read the CBPC website, and the NCB “FAQ” carefully it is evident:

    1. The NCB is the complete Bible containing what is known as the “NCV” NT and Psalms. The NCB is essentially a rebranding to designate the entire Bible.

    2. Some of the editions will feature words of Christ in red.

    3. The full Bible is a brand new product and future editions will eventually be available. Be patient, there will be reviews, and sample pictures up on websites soon. This has been confirmed by email correspondence from CBPC to friends on the Catholic Bible Fans FB page.

    What is not obviously stated and should be inferred by those in the know, is that this translation fills a gap. It is a formal translation along the lines of the RSV, yet a bit more understandable like the NAB. Yet it offers more a acceptable translation in accordance to the Church’s guidelines in Liturgiam Authenticam, and also to improve upon the NAB’s notoriously sketchy notes.

  9. Why does this exist? Surely it is obvious, isn’t it? A literal translation, with no inclusive language, in modern English written specifically for Catholics? There is no other Bible like it.

    Literal in an age when everyone else is dynamic? No inclusive language in an age when even conservative translations like the NIV and the NASB are giving in? Explicitly Catholic at a time when all translations are either Evangelical or ecumenical?

    This thing is as counter cultural as it gets! And yes, there is a market for it.

  10. Hi Marc, sorry to change the subject somewhat but I thought you’d be interested to know that apparently there’s a Catholic edition of the King James Version in the works, tentatively due out next summer. John Covert at covert.org may have more information, all I know is from what I saw in a brief Facebook post: it’s the King James Version with the full apocrypha included, and all the books in the traditional Catholic order. I wonder who the publisher will be? I’m definitely interested, and can’t wait to learn more about this project.

    1. Wouldn’t be a “Catholic” KJV. It would be as the original KJV was…the complete Bible, with the deutero-canonicals (or, in Protestant parlance “apocrypha”). The “apocrypha” was part of the KJV for 274 years, until 1885.

    2. I’m so excited about this idea that I just about fell out of my chair when I read it! Surely there needs to be more follow up on this! I checked the link but Mr. Covert doesn’t seem to comment on it explicitly anywhere. Are there any other links I could use or keep an eye on to keep tabs on this project? I would really love to know more!

      I was already shocked to come on here at see the NCV (or NCB as I guess it’s now being called) on here with a full translation. I’ve enjoyed reading through a NT/Psalms that I picked up from them awhile back, so I’d love to see more of this too. I will say though, that my affection for the NCV was somewhat dampened when I went to look at the reference material for a passage (I believe it was 2 Cor 5:21) over which I was debating with a Calvinist friend of mine and the notes on the passage appeared to give a wholesale endorsement of penal substitution. My sense was that perhaps this might be an oversight on an otherwise reliable bible note system, but it was pretty disheartening.

  11. Another note about the NCB currently listed, it is the GIANT (14 pt. type) print. This book is a big boy, but the price is consistent with the NABREs of the same format. It seems pretty likely that any other formats would the same price points.

    What I am hoping for is the simple cloth covered hardback. $15-17 bucks, for Medium and Full Size editions. Affordable, practical, with the classic colored page edges like so many of the older Bibles I have seen all the way back from the 1920s to the present day. The good thing about an affordable hardback is that you can throw it in your bag, take it to work, coffee and donuts Bible Study, and share it with others (kids and others who might not have perfectly clean hands.) If something happens to it you can replace it, no sweat. You can GIVE IT AWAY to a receptive soul and buy yourself a new one, no worries! So I am going to wait… for now. As curious as I am… I really want a full size edition with the notes with the text.

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