Particularly in the English-speaking world, it would be difficult to overstate the importance of Michael Davies' scholarship and tireless work for the preservation and propagation of Catholic faith and liturgy in the midst of tremendous upheaval. Upon his death in 2004, the future Pope Benedict XVI praised with with these words:
“I have been profoundly touched by the news of the death of Michael Davies. I had the good fortune to meet him several times and I found him as a man of deep faith and ready to embrace suffering. Ever since the Council he put all his energy into the service of the Faith and left us important publications especially about the Sacred Liturgy. Even though he suffered from the Church in many ways in his time, he always truly remained a man of the Church. He knew that the Lord founded His Church on the rock of St Peter and that the Faith can find its fullness and maturity only in union with the successor of St Peter. Therefore we can be confident that the Lord opened wide for him the gates of heaven."
This is Davies' magnum opus, tracking the contemporary liturgical revolution through the preparation and proceedings of the Second Vatican Council, the subsequent work of the Consilium, and its aftermath. Perhaps the most valuable installment is still its first volume: Cranmer's Godly Order, which offers an unmatched historical treatment of the liturgical devolution that occurred amid the whelming English Protestantism of the 16th century.