On 8th May 2015, the National Agency for the Evaluation of Universities and Research Institutes (ANVUR) recognised the scientific quality of Ecclesia orans: Periodica de scientiis liturgicis, by including it in the list of “Class A” journals in Area 11: “Historical, philosophical, pedagogical and psychological disciplines”; Sector A4: “Bibliographical, textual, historical and religious disciplines”.
The basis of this recognition was formulated in these terms: «for the high level of specialisation and the reputation of the review, Ecclesia Orans, in the field of scholarly liturgical studies in an international field».
In turn, on 16 December 2015, the European Reference Index for the Humanities and Social Sciences (ERIH-PLUS) confirmed Ecclesia orans’ place in its list of scholarly journals.
The editors of each of these bodies praise the notable effort made by the journal, particularly evident in the last few years, to attain the requirements necessary in the present day for inclusion among scholarly journals. Among the initiatives undertaken from 2013 to the present, particularly appreciable are the rigour of the methods adopted for accepting and publishing contributions (the introduction of the double peer review process), the establishment of an international and external scientific Committee, and the inauguration of the journal’s website.
The importance of recognition like this is an auspicious moment to continue with increasing vigour the work that has seen Ecclesia orans take on the role of an academic means of providing space for, and offering a discussion of, the results of the scholarly research of the teachers of our Pontifical Liturgical Institute in Rome, as well as of scholars who wish to put their own research at the service of liturgical scholarship. All this without forgetting the preference that the journal has always given to studies of liturgical sources.
It seems important also to highlight a further initiative. Thirty two years after its inception, the “little baby girl”, as P. Adrien Nocent liked to call it in the early years of the life of the journal, has not only kept faith with its original mandate, but also continues to do so by giving life to additional means that are useful for scholarly research, particularly of liturgy. Accordingly, the Editorial Board of the journal has decided to respond to several requests from various quarters by teachers and researchers and to inaugurate a new series that will gather previously unedited and original works and studies in the liturgical field in the principal modern languages. The new series will give particular priority to the publication of sources and studies of them, and so will advance the primary aim of Ecclesia orans, to put at the service of liturgical scholarship the materials needed for research. This series will represent a sort of ‘extension’ of the review itself, and so in close connection with it, as its very name indicates: Ecclesia orans. Ricerche. It will welcome within its covers the various submissions that may be presented by different researchers, while retaining the character of a journal, its scholarship, originality and methodological rigour. For that reason, the quality and scholarship of a piece of work will still be suject to peer review by the journal’s scientific Committee as well as of experts in the topic of the work, who will attest its suitability for publication.
The first and inaugural volume, shortly to appear, will contain the proceedings of the Tenth International Conference of the Pontifical Liturgical Institute, entitled Carmina laudis: temporal response to the eternal, and which was held at the Pontifical Athenaeum of Sant’Anselmo from 6th to 8th May 2015, on the theme of the Liturgy of the Hours. Those who have already placed orders for this publication during the Conference will be contacted by the publishers themselves as soon as the volume is available. Those who wish to but it can do so using the normal channels used for the distribution of scholarly material.
The target audience of the volumes of Ecclesia orans. Ricerche, therefore, will be in the first place, subscribers to the journal and the scholarly world that revolves around the liturgy.
PIETRO ANGELO MURONI