It’s been about a year since the Augustine Institute announced that they were beginning an entirely new Bible translation called the Catholic Standard Version (CSV). The Gospel of Matthew was released in January of 2023, and we discussed it at some length in a few posts here.

Today, the Augustine Institute announced the next installment of the translation: the Gospel of Mark. The edition is a single-column paperback with the same typesetting and layout as the Gospel of Matthew. Both books are available for $9.99 through Catholic Market (the Augustine Institute’s store). There is also bulk pricing available.

The product page includes a preview of the page layout, introduction, and the text of the translation for Mark 1:1-2:8.

The introduction contains a few interesting pieces of information. First, addressing the goals and name of the translation, it explains:

Catholic Standard Version (CSV). “Catholic” because it will contain the full Catholic canon of 73 books, translated by a team of Catholic biblical scholars and theologians, according to the principles set forth by the living Magisterium of the Catholic Church. “Standard” because our aspiration is to set a new standard for Bibles in English by relying upon the most up-to-date findings in textual, linguistic, historical, and archaeological research, maintaining the highest level of accuracy in rendering the original languages, while also striving for an English expression that is marked by clarity and dignity. “Version” to signal that the CSV, as a vernacular translation of the written word of God, can never rival the authority of the original texts of scripture.

“About the Catholic Standard Version” – The Gospel of Mark, Catholic Standard Version

Eventually, the Augustine Institute plans on producing a variety of editions:

As the work of translation progresses, the Institute plans to publish elegant editions of the four gospels, the Psalms, and other important portions of Scripture for prayerful reading, serious study, catechesis, and evangelization by Catholics and other Christians throughout the English-speaking world.

“About the Catholic Standard Version” – The Gospel of Mark, Catholic Standard Version

At the current publication rate, it would be a very long time before the entire translation is complete. It will be interesting to see whether the Augustine Institute will continue translating and publishing at the same rate or increase the pace in the future. If the project continues at the current rate, this seems likely to be a generational project that will not be complete for a few decades.

50 thoughts on “Catholic Standard Version: Gospel of Mark Released”

  1. Releasing a book per year is going to take too long. I wonder why they don’t follow the Word on Fire Bible series and release them in groups like the Word on Fire Gospels volume I with paperback, hardback, and leather to appeal to everyone. Unless, maybe, they’re testing the waters and don’t want to commit fully if this translation isn’t well received? I was hoping for an ESV-CE Study Bible but if that’s not in the cards, I’ll have to wait see if there are confirmed plans for a CSV Study Bible in the future.

    1. Gil S,

      Pretty sure the CSV Study Bible was announced in the webinar where the CSV was publicly announced, and they probably have material from the planned but scrapped ESV-CE Study Bible they’ll reuse. The translation will totally be out before the Ignatius Study Bible because I highly doubt they’re releasing these CSV books just after finishing the translation of them. I wouldn’t be surprised if Luke and John are already done, as well as some OT books, and we’re only seeing what they’re ready to release.

      1. Thanks Phil! I’ve been waiting for the Ignatius Study Bible Old Testament to be completed too. I really liked the Ignatius Study Bible New Testament. Right now I’ve been reading through the Didache Bible and would love to jump on either the CSV or Ignatius Old Testament Study Bible if either of them are done by the the time I finish. If not, I’ll probably just look at either the Haydock Commentary or back through the Ignatius NT Study Bible.

    2. Oh it’s definitely not in the cards the ESV CE was a chore by itself and Crossway will not permit it which is why AI has broken away from it. From my understanding is they really did want to run with it but Crossway wasn’t having it. Crossway is also very Protestant in nature and seems to very very very reluctantly agreed to a oversimplified version for Catholics just to dip the toe in the market but not enough to subvert their theological standings.

  2. I still find the whole ESV to CSV to just be bizarre. We will never know the truth as to why this is actually being done, since that is the standard practice it seems for must Catholic Bible publishers. Either way, I am enjoying my ESVCE.

    1. Actually, I don’t think it’s bizarre at all. We already know that the AI had big plans for the ESV-CE and Crossway took the air out of their balloon, not allowing them to publish anything with additional content, because Crossway is run by hyper-Calvinist, anti-Catholic bigots. So if AI wants to be able to put all the work they have no doubt already done to use, they need to have their own translation to do it with.
      I thought maybe they could have used the RSV2CE, but they probably didn’t want to upstage the Ignatius Study Bible.

      1. AI also acknowledges what virtually every notable Catholic already recognizes, from Brant Pitre to Scott Hahn, which is that the RSV-CE needs a replacement. This is clear even in the RSV-using Ignatius Study Bible’s notes where Hahn/Mitch will occasionally, though in the most charitable ways possible, basically say, “We think the RSV translation here is bad.” It’s rather smart for AI to realize the potential benefits of creating a “new RSV” translation with a wholly Catholic translation team that, if earlier posts are true, is going to be offered, license-free, to Catholic organizations that wouldn’t mind cutting the RSV fees to the NCC out of their budgets. Even if AI would’ve preferred not having to invest a bunch of time, money, and resources into making a fresh Bible translation, especially if one considers the whole point in licensing the ESV-CE was to avoid that scenario so they could just skip straight to the study Bible project, meaning they got stuck paying for the ESV-CE only to then have to pay even more to make something else to do what they wanted to do in the first place.

        Another factor is the simple fact that the ESV-CE doesn’t seem to have taken off in the US. Its lectionary status in places like the UK means it will remain a force globally, but in my experience, there are vanishingly few prominent American Catholics who bother with it. Perhaps AI wants a “do-over” to try and get the marketing right this time, even if their CSV marketing thus far is nonexistent.

      2. Adam,

        If they are run by “anti-Catholic” then why did they ever allow a Catholic edition to be made? They were even at the launch of the ESV-CE event in India, when it was rolled out by the Indian Bishops Conference. I am not denying that there are anti-Catholic elements there, but there must be more to it.

        Also, why not create a commentary series on each book of the Bible, utilizing the ESVCE, instead of a study bible? There are enough study bibles out there. (And how long has it taken to do the Ignatius one?) However, one thing that is true is that there aren’t enough solid more scholarly, yet faithful commentaries on all the books of the Bible, including the OT. At least for me, that would be more useful for the church, not another study bible.

        1. Timothy,
          Fr. Joseph Fessio of Ignatius Press mentioned that Crossway wasn’t willing to work with AI on anything other than plan text editions, I cannot remember where that was or I’d provide a link. After the ESV-CE was released I was on a Calvinist forum and Crossway was being grilled just for allowing a Catholic Edition. So Crossway was willing to collaborate to a certain degree, but probably doesn’t want to see their translation on the same page as Catholic commentary, possibly because of the negative feedback the Catholic Edition was generating.

          I agree that we need more faithful and scholarly commentary series, and that would make for a more useful tool, but I don’t personally know (other than myself) any faithful Catholic layperson who would go out and buy a commentary series (or even a large single volume commentary) but several would probably buy a faithful study Bible though.

          I disagree that there are enough faithful Catholic Study Bibles. Other than the still not complete ICSB, I can think of none. Unless you consider the variety of “Study Bibles” based on the NABRE to be faithful…there are some that have solid content, but all have the liability of the NABRE Study notes, many of which are problematic.

          1. It’s worth pointing out that the ESV-CE doesn’t get a single mention on the Crossway website. The following Google searches get you zero results:
            – “ESV-CE”
            – “Catholic ESV”
            – “English Standard Version Catholic”
            – “English Standard Version Catholic Edition”
            The following Google searches get you either one or two results and they’re just backend xlsx files hosted on the site, not actual public parts of the site:
            – “ESV Catholic”
            – “ESV Catholic Edition”
            Crossway can send representatives to India for the initial announcement, sure, far from the gaze of American eyes, but it’s pretty clear IMO that they’re doing a lot to pretend it doesn’t exist.

          2. Interesting, but note what Fr Fessio does not say, he says they do not want an edition of the ESV-CV that contains study notes, but he does not say that they are motivated by anti-Catholicism, which is what has been alleged. This prohibition of a study edition of the ESV applies not just to the Augustine Institute but to ALL third-party publishers of the ESV.

            And I think I know the reason for the prohibition: Crossway publishes their own ESV Study Bible.


            They don’t want another ESV Study Bible because they don’t want something competing with their own official Study Bible. As I speculated above, the issue is likely a “non-compete” clause in the licensing agreement with Crossway. This is entirely reasonable. Does McDonald’s want to invite another hamburger vendor to have a kiosk in their own restaurant?

          3. Biblical Catholic,

            If Crossyway’s ESV Study Bible was the only ESV Study Bible, then you would have a point, but it’s not. The Lutheran Study Bible from Concordia Press uses the ESV. The Reformation Study Bible from RC Sproul’s Ligonier Ministries uses the ESV. There is an ESV edition of John McArthur’s study Bible from Thomas Nelson. Your analogy to McDonald’s breaks down, because McDonald’s would allow other vendors to sell hamburgers if they were collecting royalties on those hamburgers.

            Can you not see what is going on? Lutherans can have their ESV study Bible. So can Calvinists and Redormed Baptists…but not Catholics. I’m assuming that Timothy and Biblical Catholic are cradle Catholics. Forgive me if I’m wrong. As a convert from Evangelicalism a decade ago, I have become accustomed to how naive many faithful cradle Catholics are to the amount of anti-Catholicism that exists in the Evangelical world.

    2. Sidestepping the whole “anti-catholicism at Crossway” debate, I just saw something that settles the “Why a CSV” issue once and for all.

      I’m taking AI’s Symbolon course as part of my archdiocese’s catechetical certification program. I noticed permissions cited in the credits included the RSV-CE 1965, 1966 for all scripture quoted in the program.

      Now this was produced in 2014, so ESV wasn’t an option. But NABRE was. More importantly, so was the RSV-2CE. But neither translation was used.

      This is the main catechetical program (like more than 12 hours of original video content) of a major Catholic apostolate in the U.S., and it doesn’t cite a word of scripture from the main translation used in mass. It chooses the RSV-CE. The ORIGINAL and not the variant produced by Ignatius Press.


      Because it’s the only translation they could quote with the minimal permissions needed, simply by complying with the notification requirement of the National Council of Churches.

      They couldn’t use the NABRE without securing special permissions from USCCB.
      Or RSV-2CE without Ignatius.
      Or, now, even the ESV-CE without Crossway.

      The RSV-CE works in a pinch as the least costly option.
      Unless they create a translation they own outright.

      Et voila!

      A new translation is born to shave off licensing fees.

      1. Honestly, we don’t really know exactly why the Augustine Institute or Ascension Press publishes the RSV rather than the NAB. It might be licensing fees or the restrictive license that requires them to include all the NAB notes along with their own notes or commentary, which would make the resulting Bibles unusually large and expensive. For something like The Great Adventure Bible, the RSV is ideal because it has minimal notes and you can add anything to the text and not have to worry about multiple layers of notes that could confuse people so that they aren’t sure what was added by the third party publisher. I can’t help but notice the NAB is almost never chosen as the text for any commentary or Study Bible, the “Little Rock” and “Catholic Study Bible” being the only counterexamples I am aware of.

        I doubt it will happen, but I really hope that with the new NAB coming next year that they revise the notes and loosen the restrictions so that publishers can remove the notes as long as they add different notes that are just as extensive. The requirement that all editions have to include all the notes is one of the main things preventing the NAB from being more widely available by third party publishers

  3. Cool, they’re going to be different colors. Anyway, I read through the CSV Matthew and I enjoyed it, though it obviously wasn’t groundbreaking. It was a smoother RSV. The footnotes, when present, certainly read like the types of things Dr. Brant Pitre has highlighted in his books and pretty firmly plant the “Catholic” flag whenever they show up, so that’s certainly got an appeal. However, I did notice some typos as I read that I hope are corrected in the final CSV Bible, though they were nothing major. Also, looking at that preview, I’m very confused as to why the book titles in the notes are now full-length rather than abbreviated (eg. Isaiah 40:3 instead of Isa 40:3) like in the Matthew volume. That inconsistency bugs me! I hope they fix that in the final CSV Bible too.

    I’m pretty sure the plan is to publish the four Gospels separately, perhaps annually as they have, then the rest of the NT as a complete unit, then the Psalms, and finally the full Bible. They did state a 2030 target date somewhere, so my guess is that work on the Epistles and Revelation, as well as the OT, is underway, hopefully with strong coordination between the teams of the two Testaments, but they’re just drip-releasing the NT translation in pieces. I don’t think it’ll take “decades” because I’m going to assume that, aside from the Psalms, they won’t release the OT piecemeal. If I were to be ridiculously optimistic and take their PR-speak at face value (a dangerous proposition, I know), then Luke comes out in 2025, John in 2026, the full NT in 2027, and then the full Bible by 2030. Personally, I’d like Luke and John to come out quicker, perhaps one this Fall or both next year, because taking four years to release each Gospel really does make it look like the project will take decades, given that the Gospels, combined, are only like 10% of the entire Bible!

    All in all, if the CSV’s strategy is to be the ESV-CE but without all the licensing strings, as someone commented before, I could definitely see it popping off, especially if they take the WOF Bible approach and do a total social media marketing blitz once it’s ready. However, they really are being super quiet about this thing right now. I’m pretty sure 99% of the super-engaged Bible Catholics have no clue this translation even exists yet.

  4. I have to say, AI’s book on translating the ESV-CE really soured me not just on the -CE but the ESV as a whole. As a result of that book, I now just see the whole translation as a pet project, a light dusting off of an outdated (1971) RSV instance in order to preserve masculine language for evangelicals.

    Strange as it sounds, I came away with a lot more trust in the NRSV-CE which I’ve been using as my standard text ever since.

    1. Chris,

      I’ve tried to adopt the ESV multiple times, but every time I consider giving it another chance, I get hung up on the same issues I had before, especially when I compare it to the NRSV, particularly in the footnote department. For this reason, I’m perfectly content to keep using the RSV-2CE supplemented by the NRSV-CE. If the CSV turns out well, I’ll happily take it to succeed my RSV and skip the ESV entirely. The CSV doesn’t even have to be the greatest thing since sliced bread, it just has to be an improvement on the RSV and at least in the same up-to-date ballpark as the ESV and NRSVue. Just the thought of having a new, formal equivalence Catholic Bible that isn’t just a “CE” of a previous translation is very appealing to me, especially if they do an unapologetically Catholic translation of the OT by making heavy use of the LXX, DSS, and the Vulgate. Since the NAB and NRSV both make much more use of those than the ESV, I’d be shocked if the CSV doesn’t also. Brant Pitre has been mentioned before as associated with the CSV, and I know he loves to talk about LXX and DSS readings in his books and lectures, as well as the targumim, so it’s highly possible.

      1. While I certainly wish the gender-accurate (there, I used the term…) language in the NRSV was less clunky in some places (“If a member of the church sins against you…”) and more Messianic elsewhere (you all know the spots), at least it’s an elegant smoothing-out of the RSV that actually makes great use of the DSS and ancient translations rather than only using them when they support or all agree against the Masoretic text in the OT. I know the “perfectly preserved Word” is much more important in certain Evangelical groups, but I have no issue seeing Scripture as a “family of families of manuscripts”. And, to me, the ESV only seems to be “essentially literal” and “a Christian translation” until traditional renderings buck up against an agenda. To me, Gen 3:16 isn’t just wrong in scholarly grounds, it makes me distrust the whole translation. Point is, I actually trust the integrity of Metzger and the NRSV (not the UE), and much less so Gruden and the ESV. I hope the CSV can give us a bible with the intellectual weight of the NRSV that is easier to read than the RSV but is more unabashedly traditional in its renderings (like the ESV, except for *those* spots).

        1. The ESV’s minimal usage of the LXX, except in Isa 7:14 and Ps 22:16, never sat well with me for the reasons you say, because it comes across as solely theologically motivated and not actually because they take the LXX or non-MT versions seriously throughout. For example, the ESV’s omission of “Let us go out to the field” in Gen 4:8 despite that seeming to be the first text restoration any new translation makes now: RSV has it, NRSV has it, CSB has it, NLT has it, NET has it, NIV has it. Really the only popular ones that don’t have it are the NASB/LSB, NKJV, and ESV. And the fact that the RSV had it means the ESV proactively took it out.

          And on that note, I hope the CSV doesn’t just generically footnote “DSS” in the OT where it’s utilized. If the CSV wants to really make a statement, citing individual scroll names would add significant intellectual weight and credibility to the translation. So, for example on Ps 22:16 with “they pierced,” if it explicitly named “5/6HevPs” in the footnote alongside the LXX, Syr, and Vulgate. If anyone remembers the “Dead Sea Scrolls Bible” by Abegg, Flint, and Ulrich, kinda like those footnotes.

          1. Oh man… Now, your sprechen my deutch. Until such a translation exists that utilizes a more eclectic OT AND traditional language, I usually just mark textual notes in my RSV when the DSS and LXX add something noteworthy – like Deut 32:43.

          2. I like the scroll name idea for the footnotes so much that I just emailed it as a suggestion to AI. It’d be neat if they went with that.

    2. Generally, the preface to a new Bible translation almost always lies about the reason the translation was made. They always make the same excuses “new advances in Biblical scholarship” and “changes in English usage”, these reasons are almost always nonsense. They were true in 1952 when the RSV was published because the RSV was the first authorized translation in modern English. I specify “authorized’ because there were earlier attempts like the translations by Moffat, Goodspeed, and the New Testament by JB Phillips, but none of them were “authorized” in the sense that a church body requested it and intended it to be used in church. The RSV was something genuinely new and somewhat revolutionary.

      After the RSV, the new translations kept coming, the Amplified Bible in 1965, the NASB in 1971, the NIV in 1978 and on and on and on. With each new version, the same claims were made in the preface “advances in scholarship” and “changes in the English language”, in none of these cases are the claims true. An honest preface would have said ‘in 1952 we were excited about the RSV, but when we read it we judged it too liberal and so we decided to make a modern language Bible that was more conservative.” But for obvious reasons, they didn’t want to admit to the ideological motivation of the translation.

      After the publication of the “NIV Inclusive Language Edition” in the UK in 1996, many conservative evangelical churches that used the NIV, including the Southern Baptist Convention and the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod decided that the NIV was now unreliable because the International Bible Society, which owns the copyright could change it at any moment (which it was in 2011) so they began looking for an alternative.

      The Southern Baptist Convention decided it would be a good cost-saving measure to have their own translation that they could use without paying royalties to someone else. The result was the Holman Christian Standard Bible (later renamed just Christian Standard Bible) in 2004.

      In 1997, a group of evangelicals met in Colorado Springs to discuss norms for the translation of pronouns and other gender references in the Bible. After the resulting “Colorado Springs Guidelines” were adopted, they began looking at making a Bible that would incorporate them. Not wanting to make a new translation it was decided to ask permission to make modest changes to the 1971 RSV. Which was published as the ESV in 2001.

      And yet for both of these translations, the preface lies about the reason for the translation “We came to distrust the NIV and decided to make a new translation so we wouldn’t have to use it anymore.”

      At least Catholic Bibles, whether the Jerusalem Bible, the RSV CE, or the NAB, have prefaces that are honest about why they exist “We wanted a modern language Bible for Catholics”, or in the case of the RSV CE “We wanted to a Catholic Bible based on a popular Protestant translation in the interests of ecumenism, so all English speaking Christians could read the same Bible.”

      1. Accordingly, an honest preface to the complete CSV would read something to the effect of “Crossway refused to let us make full use of the ESV-CE, which we assumed we would’ve been able to when we licensed it, so we’ve decided to make our own Catholic ESV from scratch, that way we don’t have to pay either Crossway for the ESV or the NCC for the RSV in order to do what we want.”

        As for “new advances in Biblical scholarship,” it’s always fun to ask how much the Nestle-Aland text has changed since the 26th edition in 1979. The answer? Hundreds of changes? Thousands? Nope, it’s 34 minor changes in the Catholic Epistles between the 27th and 28th editions, because the 27th edition’s text was exactly that of the 26th.

        1. Well, we assume that Crossway is the obstacle, but we have no way of knowing that for sure, it is really just speculation. Unless and until we have independent confirmation of Crossway standing in the way we are really just making a bunch of uncharitable assumptions because we don’t like them. Yes, Crossway is a Reformed publisher, but the translation itself is not biased in favor of Reformed theology any more than the CSB is biased in favor of Baptist theology. And if you actually look at the Crossway catalog of publications, yes, they publish a lot of Reformed theologians, but it’s all pretty moderate, soft Reformed, John Piper for example, they don’t publish any of the really hard, anti-Catholic Reformed stuff, like say John MacArthur. I see no evidence they have a particularly strong anti-Catholic axe to grind, if they did, they would never have allowed the Catholic Edition to be made at all.

          As far as we know, something like the CSV might have been in the planning stages for years before they even negotiated for the right to publish the ESV, and there might even be a provision in the contract with Crossway that they have to sell the ESV for X number of years before they can publish their own competing translation, a “non-compete” clause is standard on these types of contracts. And a “non-compete” clause might well the real reason they are slow walking the CSV.

      2. “Honest Bible Prefaces” would be a hilarious project, so long as everyone could laugh at themselves and poke at others in good taste.

        Douay – Reims (Challoner Revision):

        Having decided that a Latin text crossdressing as an English Bible was not adequately fostering a Biblically literate Catholic public, we have decided to undertake, dear reader, a full revision for the purpose of private and liturgical study and prayer. To our dismay, we regretfully ignored the fact that, though its source texts are of dubious antiquity, the Authorized Version of the British heretics was, in fact, elegantly, fairly, and accurately translated from the original tongues, and we might have availed ourselves of its use throughout the Roman West as so many, including the Greek schismatics, already have. Humbling ourselves to this grand mistake, we have heretofore revised the woodenly and laughably illegible Bible of Douay and Reims to conform almost entirely to the version set forth as “Authorized” by the English, though we have retained the venerable particularities of the Latin manuscript tradition. (Well… We kept the particularities of a late Latin manuscript of dubious antiquity, and the English grammar still blows chunks. But, besides that…) Therefore, dear reader, we present this text to you in the year of our Lord, 1750. And, we pray that this new edition of the Douay-Rheims may complement the Authorized Version, so that the venerable traditions of the Hebrews, Greeks, and Latins may be mutually beneficial; so that divisions based solely on Divine Writ may dwindle and disappear; and, so that no further translations will be necessary until the English language wanes or Our Blessed Lord returns in glory.

        1. I’ve never read or even tried to read the preface to the Douay Rheims but I doubt it is dishonest about the reason it was created, I’m sure it says it not so many words that because numerous Protestant translations had been produced in the last 50 years we need a Catholic Bible to compete with them. I’d be very surprised if the preface doesn’t say exactly that.

          And the Latinate vocabulary allegation is definitely true to some extent, although it is greatly exaggerated by Protestants, but today the Latinate vocabulary only seem odd because the DR lost the translation wars and its text is unfamiliar.

          As Fr Knox points out in his book “On Englishing the Bible” points out, Tyndale and his successors up the KJV were equally guilty of using an excessively Hellenistic and Hebraized Bible that today seems okay only due to its being used for 400 years and thus seems familiar in a way that the Latinate vocabulary of the DR doesn’t. But both translations often did a poor job of writing in coherent English.

  5. “If the project continues at the current rate, this seems likely to be a generational project that will not be complete for a few decades.”

    This assumes that they are only working on one book at a time, which is not how any Bible has ever been done. No doubt they are working on all books at the same time, and releasing the gospels first as they get finished because of their centrality.

    1. If you read the introduction it states that there will only be individual volumes of the Gospels and the Psalms and possibly a few other important parts of scripture. But it appears the releases so far have been meant to correspond to the Gospel used primarily in the liturgical reading cycle. Last year was Matthew for year A, this year is Mark for year B.
      So I think you are correct. They are probably much further along than what we can see, and they do not intend to release the translation book by book as the go.

      1. In speaking with a rep from Augustine Institute, many of your conclusions were acknowledged. There is nothing, at this time, planned further than the four Gospels, and a study edition(s). She said nothing of the Psalms nor any other OT scripture. There is no current plan for a single volume of the four Gospels. Nor any plans for a boxed set of the four Gospels. It would appear as well, going forward is dependent upon sales. Mark was published due, in a major way, to the favorable response to Matthew.
        Perhaps it was only the response from one person, but she wasn’t able to supply further directions. No information as to a hardcover or leather edition, for example.
        It did appear that a reason for the CSV is the disappointment with the ESV-CE. She hinted at this, so I couldn’t say definitively that this is so. Yet, she emphasized the sales response as a reason to go forward with Mark, and a reason for the publishing of the CSV Gospels of Matthew and Mark.
        She did state that, in addition to Brant Pitre and Curtis Mitch, other people with the Augustine Institute are involved, though she had no names to offer.

        1. So the CSV is apparently not going to be a full Bible, and it isn’t being done because Crossway is “anti-Catholic” and creating obstacles to an annotated edition of the ESV-CE.

          However, the ESV-CE may have somewhat disappointing sales, no doubt due to several issues including lack of knowledge among Catholics, lack of access to it since it isn’t sold in book stories except by special order (which means that the customer would still have to know about it in the first place to be able to order it, a customer is unlikely to just randomly discover it in the Bibles section of Barnes and Noble), Catholic distrust of the ESV (which I think is unwarranted) or the perception that it is so close to the RSV that if you already have an RSV-CE there is no reason also to get an ESV-CE because you won’t notice the difference (not really true and less and less true with every modest revision of the ESV). There may be other factors I haven’t thought of.

        2. This makes it sound like a complete CSV Bible is less than certain, unless the comment about Mark only being published due to the favorable response to Matthew just refers to Mark as an individual volume, and not that the CSV translation altogether would’ve been scrapped had Matthew not garnered the favorable response. Am I misunderstanding?

          1. To Phil and Mark: The rep that I spoke with stated that, at this time, no complete Bible is being planned. She seemed to believe that the four Gospels and a study edition (she gave no indication as to what this might be comprised of) are what plans are for.

        3. Nothing planned further for individual releases beyond the four Gospels or nothing planned further for the CSV beyond the four Gospels? It was clearly announced as a full Bible with a planned date and I don’t see how good sales figures would somehow make them less confident in a full translation.

          1. James,

            That’s what the rep says, but the “About the Catholic Standard Version” section in both available volumes says a volume on the Psalms is planned (“As the work of translation progresses, the Institute plans to publish elegant editions of the four gospels, the Psalms, and other important portions of Scripture”), and Tim in Miami watched the webinar last January, where he wrote, “This translation has plans in the next 8 years, of launching individual Gospel books, then a NT which will be in many formats, leather and their own study Bible. The whole Bible should be released by 2030, according to their plans.” This was only a year ago, so I have no reason to believe they’ve suddenly, and quietly, scrapped all these plans while still releasing the Mark volume in line with those very plans. Especially if they’re also saying the Matthew volume had a “favorable response,” there’s no reason that news would be coupled with them becoming less bullish on the plans they laid out when they didn’t have any actual responses yet. I don’t know if AI members have been given a new webinar since with more info, but it’s probably safe to assume the AI rep doesn’t actually have all the details and that the fullest official statements we have from that webinar, from the people doing the translation, and the words in the volumes themselves, hold. Luke and John are next, followed by a NT, followed by the full Bible, with separate volumes for the Psalms and “other important portions of Scripture” somewhere in the mix.

            In short, I see no need to worry about the CSV. At the bare minimum, I’m expecting a complete CSV NT in the next 3 or 4 years.

  6. I guess the Ignatius Study Bible is taking so long because it’s a two man project. One reason Evangelicals churn out so many Study Bibles – with high production values – is that there are teams of people and academic institutions behind them. For these reasons the Augustine Institute is our best hope for future resources.

    1. From what I’ve heard, the Ignatius Study Bible has been done or nearly done for years. The hold-up isn’t actually the writing, it’s the editing. The volumes are written, but they have no one to edit them before publication. This seems so stupid, how hard can it possibly be to find a qualified editor for a major Catholic publishing company like Ignatius Press? I honestly don’t get it, this is just ineptitude on the part of Ignatius Press, either that or they just don’t care because they don’t regard the project as a priority.

  7. I don’t know, it seems like the Ignatius Study Bible folks are getting pretty close to releasing all the OT books in standalone booklet form… I think just 9 books left, probably covered 5ish booklet releases?

    I’d say in another 2 years we should see something on the horizon!

    1. But from what I understand it could have happened 5-10 years ago if Ignatius had made editing a priority.

    2. Kyle,
      I count 9 OT books as well:
      1 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles, Baruch, Ezra, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Leviticus, Nehemiah, and Numbers. These contain a total of 6328 verses. Ignatius has been averaging about 1500 verses per year since 2010. If they maintain this pace we are looking at another 4 years.
      Yes, I’m a hopeless nurd.

  8. Just discovered this site. I’m taking a class with Dr. Pitre now and some in the class asked about the CSV translation so here’s some info from last week’s class:
    – All four Gospels are done.
    – Acts and the Epistles are being worked on now.
    – The final Bible will probably go beyond the planned 2030 date.
    Bonus: The Catholic Introduction to the Bible New Testament will be finished this year but its publication is not expected till 2026.

  9. Other than the difference in American and British spelling of certain words, does anyone know if there are any other differences between the U.S. and U.K. versions of the ESV-CE? I ask because I’m reading the first few volumes of the Collected Letters of St. Josemaria Escriva from Scepter Press, which uses the U.K. version of the ESV-CE, and I was struck by Biblical quotes using the word “slave.” My Augustine Bible uses “bondservant” for the same verse, not “slave.”

  10. For what it’s worth, I decided to invest in an old copy of the 1965 Oxford Annotated Bible… the one with the original (non -CE) RSV and an imprimatur from Boston’s Cardinal Cushing.

    Since I pray the Divine Worship Daily Office, I thought I’d swap it in for the lesson readings.

  11. Since we’re never likely to see an ESV-CE study Bible, does anybody have an opinion on the Lutheran ESV with the separate volume of “apocrypha”? To my knowledge, the Lutheran edition is the only way to get the deuterocanonicals with annotations in the ESV translation.

    1. I like the “Apocrypha: The Lutheran Edition with Notes” from that Concordia set, though I don’t have experience with the “Lutheran Study Bible” volume. It has a lot of essays and study materials and for the most part, despite being a Lutheran publication, there is very little that’s objectionable to Catholic or Orthodox sensibilities. Arguably the best annotated edition of the deuterocanonical books available.

  12. I’m no Bible scholar, but I have strong opinions about good English style. It took me just a few verses from the CSV’s Mark to realize I don’t need this Bible. It seems dumbed down with its short, simple sentences, and yet wordy in unnecessary ways as well! If you want a faithful translation with the touch of an excellent but gentle stylist who finds modest value in slavish literalism, try the sleeper New Catholic Bible.

    The NCB is far more beautiful than this pretentiously and misleadingly named “standard” version. I suspect this new translation exists so that AI does not have to pay royalties to Crossways for use of the ESV. Like the NCB, it appears to be a house translation. But unlike the NCB, I find little of interest or value in this latest translation.

    1. I agree that the CSV isn’t anything revolutionary or amazing, or even that inspiring. It’s kinda like how the NET translation clearly only exists because they needed something to go along with notes, which were the real selling point for the NET Bible. You could say the same about the CSV and the eventual CSV Study Bible: that the translation exists just for the study materials that will one day complement it.

      I just see the CSV as an in-house Catholic counter to the ESV (even when the ESV-CE exists) or as the RSV-3CE, and in those ways, I support it and hope to one day use it just as others use the ESV. I say this because all your comments toward the CSV can be leveled against the ESV, and I’ve had scholarly friends, many of whom are Evangelicals, say as much: “The ESV is what happens if a stodgy, English grammarian translates the Bible,” they’ll say. “It’s all technically correct, but it lacks soul.”

  13. Robert,
    Do you know if there are any editions of the New Catholic Bible that are printed in a country other than China ? I’m trying to route my spending to countries that are more friendly and more christian. I even called Catholic Book Publishing to ask and the lady answering the phone didn’t know.

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