Chronology for the New Revision of New American Bible Old Testament


August 1990: at the Business Session of the 1990 meeting of the CBA, the membership passed a resolution urging the leadership to take steps toward initiating the revision of the New American Bible Old Testament (except the Psalter, which had already being revised) (see minutes of the meeting CBQ 52 [1990] 703).


July 1993: Based on the resolution passed in 1990, the CBA Executive Secretary requested that the CBAs NAB Board of Control take the necessary steps to initiate this revision process.

April 1994: With the agreement of the Administrative Board of the National Council of Catholic Bishops to proceed with the revision, a new Steering Committee/Editorial Board (whose members were suggested by the Board of Control) was established. It eventually consisted of Deirdre A. Dempsey, Robert A. Di Vito, Joseph Jensen, O.S.B. (chair), Dale Launderville, Roland E. Murphy, O.Carm., Kathleen Nash, Irene Nowell, O.S.B., and James P. Walsh, S.J. This first meeting was to establish guidelines for the revision and to arrange for thirty-eight CBA members, chosen for their specialization in the Old Testament books they would revise, to begin work.


Late 1994 through May 2002: Revised texts began to be received before the end of 1994, and the committee began meeting one whole weekend every month going over the texts received to improve and complete the revision process.


May 2002: The completed revision of the Old Testament text was sent to the CCD office of the USCCB. This was then transmitted to the Bishops Ad Hoc Committee for Scripture Translations Proposed for the Liturgy, chaired by Bishop Arthur Serratelli. This committee sent the texts to individual "censors," whose job it was to assure that the revision would be suitable as a Catholic translation. They returned their findings to the Ad Hoc Committee. The Ad Hoc Committee reviewed the work of the censors and then sent the texts back to the revision committee with any suggestions from the censors for changes.


June 2005 through September 2008: These texts began to be received from the Ad Hoc Committee. These were then reviewed by the revision committee and responses to suggestions returned to the Ad Hoc Committee.


September 2008: The last book (Jeremiah) was received from the Ad Hoc Committee, which the revision committee (necessarily) dealt with very promptly (in view of CCD plans to present the completed revision to the USCCB for approval at their November meeting).


Concomitantly, the CBA was attempting a revision of the NAB Psalter of 1991 to a form that would be acceptable for the liturgy; this meant conforming it to the requirements of Liturgiam authenticam. In June 2003 a revision of the NAB Psalter, revised in this manner, was sent to Bishop Serratelli's Ad Hoc Committee with the hope it would be used in the liturgy. In March 2006 Bishop Donald Trautman, then Chair of the Bishops Committee on the Liturgy, invited a presentation of this revised Psalter, which presentation would be to demonstrate its conformity to Liturgiam authenticam and its "singability" (the latter demonstrated with the help of a CD which included pieces by St. Anselm's Abbey schola, the Benedictine Sisters of Sacred Heart Monastery, Cullman, AL, Jean Olexy, Normand Gouin, and the Oregon Catholic Press Singers). Bishop Trautman sent letters of thanks to all those involved individually in its production, but the Ad Hoc Committee had not reported on the vetting process so no action was taken.

May 2008: The Ad Hoc Committee finished the vetting process and sent suggestions for the re-revised Psalter.

June 2008: The CBA was again invited to make a presentation similar to that of June 2006 of the re-revised Psalter, now before the Bishops Committee on Divine Worship (a reconstitution of the Bishops Committee on the Liturgy), now under Bishop Serratelli as Chair, during the USCCB meeting in Orlando. A few days later the CBA was informed that that committee had chosen instead a revised version of the Grail Psalter for use in the liturgy.


November 2008: The completed revised NAB OT was presented to the USCCB at their November 2008 meeting, at which time it was approved. However, at the same meeting it was decided that this newly revised NAB would not be published using the 1991 Psalter. Since the re-revised Psalter was not available for use, the revised NAB will be published when a new revision of the Psalter is finished.

Early 2009: The CCD office has contacted individual scholars to contract for revision of blocks of psalms to be presented to the USCCB for approval at their November meeting.