Monsignor Joseph Clifford Fenton’s Review of ‘The Leonard Feeney Omnibus’


THE LEONARD FEENEY OMNIBUS. A Collection of Prose and Verse Old and New. New York, Sheed and Ward, 1943. Pp. xiv + 399. $3.00.

Most of the material in this Omnibus has been printed before. Yet the publishers have done the cause of American letters a considerable service in bringing out this collection. Certainly the years to come will see more extensive editions of Father Feeney’s works. We are fortunate in having this much now. This Omnibus, small though it is, is far more effective than little books and scattered articles in bringing us to appreciate the foremost man of letters in Catholic America.

His trained and gifted mind has caught what is best in our own life scene. The Omnibus shows us Catholic loyalty in a barber shop, the theological virtues on the Boston and Albany, apologetics on the New York, New Haven and Hartford, and God’s charity in Lynn and Paris. The things he saw are the things we all might have seen, and which we know better because he has seen them.

Father Feeney as an author we reverence and acclaim. However we are considerably less enthusiastic about his prowess as an editor. It is difficult in the extreme to pardon a man who left “The Brown Derby”1 out of a Leonard Feeney Omnibus.


  1. Father Feeney’s tribute to Al Smith, “The Brown Derby” can be found in the November, 2006 Mancipia (Founder’s Column, beginning on page 2).