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Replies to five objections about the new Missal translation
The Divine Life ^ | 8/27/2010 | Eric Sammons

Posted on 08/27/2010 8:20:08 AM PDT by markomalley

If you follow Catholic news at all, you probably know that the Vatican has approved a new English translation of the Roman Missal. It will be implemented throughout the States starting Advent 2011. This new translation is not without controversy, however, so I thought I would address five of the most common objections to the new Missal:

1) The new translation is not needed
Many complain, “where is the need for this translation? who is calling for it?” I think the fact that we have seen a tremendous drop in regular Mass attendance over the past forty years should be reason enough. Of course the existing translation is not the only – or even main – reason Mass attendance has plummeted, but it surely doesn’t help. And the new translation is more catechetical: it teaches more deeply the truths of the faith, and we should not underestimate how much impact hearing the same words every week of our lives can have on a person.

2) There will be too much confusion with the new translation
I have heard numerous people complain that the changes will cause much confusion in the pews, as some people respond “and with you” (the current response) and others respond “and with your spirit” (the new – actually old – response). I have to admit – I have a hard time taking this seriously, considering the fact that forty years ago the Mass was radically changed overnight, from Latin to English. If the Church survived that change, I’m sure it will survive this relatively minor one. There are sure to be some hiccups along the road, but I’m willing to bet that by Lent of 2012, just about every parish will no longer have any problems with implementation.

3) The new translation is too literal
Many don’t realize that the translation currently in use at the Mass isn’t exactly a translation; it is more of a paraphrase. When a Mass is promulgated, there is one “official” text: the Latin. Then it is translated into all the languages of the world. When the English translation we use was made forty years ago, the translators actually paraphrased the text in many places, and thus replaced the official words with what they felt was more appropriate. Advocates of such a process believe that this allows the language of the Mass to more fully reflect the culture of each particular people. The problem with this is that we no longer had a truly unified worship across the Latin rite, as our “translation” did not always reflect the same realities as other translations, or as the Latin. By sticking more closely to the Latin, we are more in tune with the mind of the universal Church, not the mind of some group of 1970’s liturgical gurus.

4) This is a “step backwards”
Some (notably Fr. Thomas Reese) have argued that this new translation is actually a “step backwards.” By this they feel that by having a more faithful translation we are moving back to a pre-Vatican II day. Frankly, this is their argument about any change that incorporates more traditional elements of the Church. What they do not understand is that very few Catholics want to go back to the 1950’s, but we do want to incorporate the whole of our tradition. One of the great annoyances I had as a Protestant was that we didn’t appreciate history at all; to us, Church history was the first century, the early 16th century and the last 20 years. But as Catholics we incorporate all of our tradition into our practices, and this new translation is taking us out of the 1970’s time capsule we have been in and better incorporating all of our tradition.

5) The new translation will be too hard to understand
Another argument against the new translation is that it uses words that are too difficult to understand, like “ineffable.” On its face, this is a very demeaning attitude. America is the most educated nation in the history of the world, and some people don’t think we will understand a word like “ineffable?” And even if someone does not, they can just look it up that week and for the rest of their Mass-attending life they will know what it means. Furthermore, “dumbing down” the liturgical language can have many negative side-effects. The Mass is not something we experience once and then never again; we celebrate it every week (even every day). If we use dumbed-down language, we are likely to be easily bored with it (as has in fact happened), and we are going to see the Mass not as something that lifts us up to heaven, but that keeps us here on earth. Language that is more lofty than everyday language can remind us of the solemnity of the mysteries we are celebrating.

Pray for our bishops and pastors that they might be able to properly implement this new Missal and that it might help the faithful to more fully worship our Lord in spirit and truth.

TOPICS: Catholic

1 posted on 08/27/2010 8:20:09 AM PDT by markomalley
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To: markomalley

Forty years ago I was an 11 year old altar boy. I didn’t like change then, but I think I’ll like it more today.

2 posted on 08/27/2010 8:24:16 AM PDT by MarineBrat (Better dead than red!)
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To: markomalley

Bring back choirs and sacred music

3 posted on 08/27/2010 8:46:33 AM PDT by calico_thompson
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To: markomalley

I watch more as a bemused spectator seeing people get their panties in a bunch (on both sides of the argument) over things like this in the church. just can’t get worked up over stuff like this.

I’m sure there will be things about it that will bug me at first, but the main point of mass is not about whether we say “and also with you” or “with your spirit.” It’s about coming together in communion with the universal church and worshipping the Lord.

Those who argue that it’s vital (for every single word and puntuation mark to be translated exactly the same in every language) are essentially saying that something has been wrong with every mass in the world for the past 45 years. OTOH, those who argue against returning to the roots of the Church don’t understand what the Roman Catholic Church is all about.

This will be my third go-round (although am too young to remember very much of the Latin mass). When I first heard about this a few years ago, have to admit that my first reaction was: “why bother, the current mass works just fine”. Now I’m looking forward to the change.

4 posted on 08/27/2010 8:53:06 AM PDT by Cousin Eddie
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To: markomalley

I had a 35 year hiatus from the Church. As a result of a medical emergency last year, while I was in the C.C.U., I was administered what is now called “Anointing of the sick”............. I think that’s another term for “Last Rites”. My faith since that time has brought me back into the Church and I’m, once again, hopefully living in a State of Grace... Our Parish Priest stops by on a monthly basis to hear my confession and I receive Holy Communion. I also watch the Celebration of Holy Mass each and every day at 8:00 a.m. on the EWTN T.V. channel and pray the Rosary daily.
I was an Altar Boy in the early 1940’s and learned the Mass as it was then.... in Latin. On Sundays, I used the standard Sunday Missal by Fr. Stedman. I recently was able to get a reprinted version of this same Missal and use it when I hear Mass. The Mass, as celebrated today on EWTN, has very little similarity to the changes in the Mass we experienced 40 years ago and these changes precipitated my untimely departure from the Church. I like the way things are being done these days... it is most gratifying to see women in the Chapel wearing a veil as it was done so many years ago. I also like the planned idea for the Communicant to receive the Holy Eucharist while kneeling and “on the tongue”.. as opposed to the Commmunicant taking the Host in their hands.
I am eagerly looking forward to the upcoming new Missal changes... I also believe they will, in all cases, be an improvement.

5 posted on 08/27/2010 9:26:08 AM PDT by MODELSHIPS
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I was in favor of the mass in English, but after that was done, I saw little reason for creating a “new mass.” I went along it, but was struck by the banality of the language. Some of it did not even make sense. What, for instance, does “one being with the Father” mean? In the 4th century, there was a virtual civl war in the Church occasioned by the Arian heresy, which almost succeeded in taking over the Church. “one being with the Father” is a fudge that any Arian or “semi-Arian” might find acceptable. The present English translation is full of such fudges.

6 posted on 08/28/2010 8:39:12 AM PDT by RobbyS (Pray with the suffering souls.)
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To: markomalley

**Many don’t realize that the translation currently in use at the Mass isn’t exactly a translation; it is more of a paraphrase. **

So true! By a committee of Bishops, no less.

7 posted on 08/28/2010 8:02:02 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: calico_thompson

Gregorian chant is the first thing in the new OCP books that are coming out this fall. (And that will be the fall of 2010. Look for the music to change for the better even more!

8 posted on 08/28/2010 8:04:05 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: markomalley
Good thread!

Replies to five objections about the new Missal translation
Milwaukee priests lament more accurate Roman Missal translation; ‘salt in the wounds’ (Catholic Cau)
[CATHOLIC/ORTHODOX CAUCUS] Clergy to convene, discuss Catholic missal changes (waah alert)
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Vatican official: "The new Mass is a passing phase. In 50 years, that will be entirely clear."
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Truth in the New Translation Series # 4: The Hanc Igitur of the Roman Canon

Bishop Tobin: Get Ready – The Mass is About to Change
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Truth in the New Translation Series #3: The Communicantes of the Roman Canon
The New Missal: Disaster or Opportunity?
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The Future Liturgy of an Anglican Ordinariate: Why not Sarum?
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More Reflections on Liturgical Language [Anglo-Catholic Perspective on Latin vs Vernacular Debate]
Helping American Catholics Learn the New Missal

Pope receives copy of complete English translation of Roman Missal
[Catholic Caucus] Prayer and Belief [Pope Benedict targets abuses in the liturgy]
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The New Missal - Historic Moment in Liturgical Renewal [Bishop Serratelli]
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Liturgical Vestments (and prayers the priest says while vesting for Mass)
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The "Old" Liturgical Movement: 1947 "Benedictine" Arrangement [Catholic Caucus]
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Liturgy: Are Glass Chalices OK for Mass?

9 posted on 08/28/2010 8:05:45 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: markomalley

As a Catholic who is in her early 50’s, whom I call, a child of Vatican II, and who has always struggled with her faith, I want to begin anew and not only LEARN about my faith, but to be able to PRAY and LIVE my faith. That includes studying both the Holy Bible and Catichism of the Roman Catholic Church.

10 posted on 08/30/2010 3:39:02 AM PDT by Biggirl (AZ Is DOING THE JOB The Feds Should Be Doing, ENFORCING The Southern Border! =^..^=)
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To: MODELSHIPS; Salvation; NYer; Judith Anne; BenKenobi; Mad Dawg

Your story of finding the Church is heartening. Thank you for sharing it. May God bless you on this journey and may your life be a light to all.

11 posted on 09/04/2011 10:05:53 PM PDT by Cronos (John 6:61-64: Jesus rebukes those who think the Eucharist is just a symbol/metaphor, repeats: Jn8:15)
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To: Biggirl

Of course, the Bible is key. The Catechism only is a collection of our family’s reading of the Bible — as a community we learn, pray and read together, but our community stretches across God’s earth and across time. Our family has the advantage of being taught by Christ Himself the way to interpret His scripture, this was handed down by Him through the ages, through the Apostles.

12 posted on 09/04/2011 10:11:52 PM PDT by Cronos (John 6:61-64: Jesus rebukes those who think the Eucharist is just a symbol/metaphor, repeats: Jn8:15)
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To: markomalley

Thanks for the post. Yeah, the objections are bogus.

Our parish is handing out a series of papers, one or two every week. We just started with the introductory rites and the penitential rites. So far every change is perfecrly well justified, IMHO.

Yes, there will be gnashing of teeth. Tra La. It is the same Lord. I’ve said before we could worship in Pig-Latin, and I’d still be a happy guy as long as the Mass were valid.

13 posted on 09/05/2011 3:52:03 AM PDT by Mad Dawg (Oh Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.)
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To: markomalley
I went to mass in Quebec City last year and I was surprised that the creed is expressed je crois (I believe) in French.

I don't have strong feelings about the old translation EXCEPT the use of "we believe" for the Latin Credo.

During my ECUSA days, the change from "I believe" (1928) to "we believe" (1979) was explained more than once by saying that it allowed clergy and others who did NOT believe themselves to participate by acknowledging that the community, "We", did believe.

I'm quite sure that the same subversive spirit was at work in the old Catholic Mass translation (1969-2011, r.i.p.)

14 posted on 09/05/2011 3:59:28 AM PDT by Jim Noble (To live peacefully with credit-based consumption and fiat money, men would have to be angels.)
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This is the kind of story that could lead one to believe that the sacraments are efficacious.

Nah! That's too radical.

15 posted on 09/05/2011 4:39:33 AM PDT by Mad Dawg (Oh Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.)
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To: Jim Noble
Interesting. Thank you. In Polish it is Wierzę w jednego Boga (I believe in One God)
16 posted on 09/05/2011 5:51:37 AM PDT by Cronos (John 6:61-64: Jesus rebukes those who think the Eucharist is just a symbol/metaphor, repeats: Jn8:15)
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To: Cousin Eddie

I’m a convert here. Very much in support of the change, and I am looking forward to it.

17 posted on 09/05/2011 3:55:19 PM PDT by BenKenobi (Honkeys for Herman!)
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