At long last, the complete Ignatius Catholic Study Bible (RSV-2CE) is officially scheduled for publication later this year. Ignatius Press has created a new website to promote the upcoming release with lots of information and sample images.

Of note, the complete study Bible will be released as a single volume in both hardcover and leather editions. So far, there are no indications that a stand-alone Old Testament volume will be released to complement the previously published New Testament volume (which was released in 2010).

The New Testament volume is quite large (advertised dimensions are 7 X 1.56 X 10 inches), and the complete Bible is expected to be the same length and width and significantly thicker: 7 X 2.375 X 10 inches. It will contain 2,320 pages, with 9 point font for the biblical text. The promotional website says that pages will be printed on standard Bible stock. Without a sense for the opacity or weight of the paper, it’s hard to know at this point what quality of “standard Bible stock” they will be using. I do not own a copy of the New Testament volume, but if anyone would like to chime in in the comments on the paper quality of that edition, it might give some sense of what to expect in the full Bible.

Overall, this will bring to completion the herculean project of producing a complete study Bible with a relatively small team that Ignatius embarked on more than 20 years ago. The first individual volume on the Gospel of Mark was published in 2001. The goal of the entire project has been to integrate historical and literary scholarship with theological and spiritual reflections, drawing on the Catechism and the Fathers and Doctors of the Church.

21 thoughts on “Complete Ignatius Catholic Study Bible Planned for Release in Fall 2024!”

  1. Hallelujah!

    After 9,000 years (I’ve been told), the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible is done! Time to set aside the “just before the Second Coming” jokes, which I guess will now be passed to the Augustine Institute’s CSV Bible and its eventual Study Bible, since the NAB 3.0 (?) is due next year. For me, the biggest blessing will be no more awkward answers when potential/new converts ask for the “best” Catholic study resource for them, where you have to cobble together an OT supplement option after recommending the ICSB NT.

    As for your questions, Marc, the ICSB NT has a font size of about 10.5 points (advertised as 10 points), so assuming the same Ignatius Press font and layout, the complete Bible’s font will be about a point smaller than the standalone NT volume. Their standard RSV-2CE has a 9-to-9.5-point font, so that’ll probably be it. The standalone NT also has very opaque, thick paper with virtually no ghosting—R. Grant Jones measured its paper as over 90 gsm!—so I don’t know what they mean by “standard Bible stock” other than, perhaps, the same paper as in their standard RSV-2CE, which Jones measured at over 40 gsm. At 2,320 pages, it will be shorter than the ESV Study Bible, but they’re both in the 2,000s range, so it’ll definitely be comparable, as we always assumed.

    I’m going to assume the “leather” is the standard Ignatius bonded stuff, but I might order both the hardcover and “leather” editions to try both out, though I expect I’ll stick with the hardcover. I initially got the “leather” Didache Bible but eventually sold it in favor of the hardcover, which I still use. Besides, I remember seeing Dr. Hahn on Pints with Aquinas with the ICSB NT, and he was using the hardcover; if the hardcover is good enough for the general editor of the project, it’s probably good enough for me.

    Shout-out to all the Catholic adults who weren’t even born yet when this project started!

  2. I own a copy of the Leather Ignatius Study Bible NT and the pages are easy to read and thick enough that I don’t see any ghosting of any concern. The font size was a 10.4pt compared to the 9pt in this edition. I was surprised that they were able to fit the OT in one volume together with the NT. I have other Ignatius Bible editions and have not had any issues reading the text so I’d be surprised if there was any issue reading the text in this edition.

  3. I guess I get to be the first one here to express my displeasure that there’s no mention of a standalone Old Testament volume. What an honor. Seriously though, while I’m glad it will finally be done, and I’m glad it’ll all be available in one volume, I do hope they give us the option of a standalone Old Testament. Maybe they’ll offer that in the future.

    1. I agree with you. I have no reason to double up on the NT. Plus that thickness and font size gives me a queasy feeling regarding the thinness of the paper and readability. I was one of those when I started this journey clamoring for the OT but now, I can wait for a OT or at least I m not waiting as eagerly as I once was. Looking forward to coverage and comments about it on here later on.

  4. They’ve also released the “Jeremiah, Lamentations, and Baruch” booklet. Only Leviticus, Numbers, 1-2 Chronicles, Ezra and Nehemiah are remaining.

    I wonder whether they’ll make available somewhere the study questions that are present in the individual booklets, but not in the larger Bible.

    1. I’m hoping they continue to publish the booklets. I have all of them that have been released up to this point (and am about 2/3 of the way through reading them). They’re really nice to read, thick paper and large font. I’ll probably stick with just having those and not getting a standalone one for myself if I can get a complete set. (Will definitely get the standalone version for gifts though!)

    1. Huh. Is Ignatius Press finally loosening their iron grip on their house translation, since it says Catholic Bible Press (Thomas Nelson) as the publisher? If so, would Cambridge University Press or Schuyler Bibles mind picking it up too? I already have a fully rebound goatskin RSV-2CE so I probably won’t need this or any other, unless someone releases something really nice like the Illustrated Catholic Bible NRSV-CE with it, but this certainly could be good for others. More formats are a good thing.

    2. Wow! Very interesting. To James: There have been a few other publishers printing the RSV-2CE in recent years. Ave Maria Press printed the Ave Catholic Notetaking Bible and the Living the Word Catholic Women’s Bible (both of which use the RSV-2CE). Midwest Theological Forum published it with the Didache Bible. And Ascension press used the RSV-2CE in the Great Adventure Bible. I don’t know what the underlying royalty payments look like, but they don’t seem to be stopping other publishers from jumping on the bandwagon.

      1. Marc,

        I know, I meant to clarify that Ignatius was letting “bigger,” more “mainstream” Bible publishers take a crack at it. Not a shot at Ave Maria or MTF or Ascension, but particularly the latter two licensed the text to go with what they really are selling: the articles+CCC notes and the integrated Great Adventure system, respectively. While CBP is, obviously, a Catholic imprint, it is an imprint of Thomas Nelson, who is much more related to Protestant Bibles like the NKJV, and they’re seemingly printing a direct alternative to the standard Ignatius RSV-2CE without much in terms of bells and whistles besides the 10-point comfort print font and apparently “Anglicized text.” I’m curious if this has anything to do with the Ordinariate.

    3. Interesting.
      It’s from Thomas Nelson’s Catholic Bible Press, NOT directly from Ignatius.

      Until now, CBP only publishes two translations in different formats: NRSV-CE and NABRE.
      Interesting that they’re adding RSV-2CE to their stable.

      1. I have their NRSVCE genuine leather thinline, and it’s a really nicely put together Bible. I don’t always love the translation, but CBP really prints nice products.

        1. I completely agree. Their large print NABRE is my favorite NABRE edition. They produce good quality bibles for a reasonable price.

  5. I also hope they design a new cover. I love the “Four Evangelists with Christ the Teacher” icon cover design, but it’s been used on every edition of the RSV2CE that Ignatius has published (standard Bible, Study New Testament, New Testament and Psalms, and large-print Bible), and I think it’s time for a new design. It would be nice if they would do another design similar in style to the previous design, but with a different icon. St. Ignatius Orthodox Press has done something similar with their Scripture books, with a different icon used on the covers of their Books of the Gospels, Epistles, Psalms, and Old Testament readings:

    Don’t get me wrong, though, I’m very happy that the complete Ignatius Study Bible is finally getting released, and I’m glad that it will be available as a single volume. If it were only possible for this thing to exist in one format, I’d want them to publish it as a single volume, since I think that that format is most conducive for making this Study Bible mainstream among Catholics. I just hope that they offer the option of a standalone Old Testament for all of us who bought the New Testament and have been waiting a decade or two for the Old Testament. Maybe it could be a limited run, and then they could phase out the separate Old Testament and New Testament volumes and just offer the complete Bible.

    1. I just wish Ignatius would be more adventurous with the options this time around. For something 20+ years in the making, would a more expensive genuine cowhide or calfskin option be too big an ask? I mean, they have to know that their burgundy RSV2CE is a popular rebind candidate amongst Catholics, right?

  6. A funny note from Scott Hahn’s podcast (, posted by Anonymous elsewhere) on this upcoming release is that when they discussed the project with Thomas Nelson (who by then had lots of experience with study bibles), they were told it would take “at least 20 years”. Scott thought that was an exaggeration, but acknowledged now that the joke’s on him. Factors for the delay include editing and getting the Imprimatur, as speculated elsewhere. The podcast only spent the first few min discussing the study bible itself — this is an Ignatius Press project, after all — and the rest of the 36 min on other stuff.

    For Catholic readers, a major point of the ICSB is that it explicitly uses Dei Verbum and the Catechism’s 3 criteria for biblical interpretation (CCC 111-114): attention to the content and unity of scripture, reading within the living Tradition of the Church, attention to the analogy of faith. Decades after Vatican II, it is AFAIK the only study bible to adopt this framework.

    They said the new volume is the same size as the NT compilation (7×10 but much thicker, as we know from this post) and uses the usual onion skin paper. The NT ICSB had the luxury of using much thicker paper and includes a “concise concordance”, but that isn’t true of the full volume, so maybe there are reasons to keep your NT volume. They mentioned that even with the full Catholic canon, the word count is still below the ESV and NIV study bibles’.

    For me, it’s not a question of whether to get it. The question is: leather or hardcover?

    And I wonder if they will update the Ignatius Bible app’s ICSB to include the full commentary content?

    1. To be honest… after all this time, I may simply not get it.

      In the intervening years, I’ve switched to a vintage copy of the original Oxford Annotated Bible (RSV). Though it predates the -CE, it carries an imprimatur from Cardinal Cushing so… voila! It’s a Catholic Study Bible in the original RSV.

      Not sure Ignatius can really improve on that for me.

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