Liturgical translation drama at the USCCB. Is it finally over?

You have to admire Bp. Trautman.  He kept his powder dry and his plan of attack hidden, saving his very last musket ball for the end.

He raised a motion that the bishops should see the Gray Book of the Antiphons, discuss it and vote on it.

Very dramatic, really.

Background: Card. George, as President, had asked in the name of the Conference that the Holy See handle translation of the the antiphons.  The Holy See, of course, agreed.   Eventually, the Holy See sent a Gray book, but it was not distributed.

Bp. Trautman, who said at one point he wasn’t aware of the Holy See’s Gray book, reacted to this departure from procedure saying that the Constitution on Sacred Liturgy requies that competent territorial authority has to approve translations.  He calls this a doctrinal issue.  I will return to that important point at the end.

Therefore Bp. Trautman put a motion on the floor for the bishops to insist that the all Latin bishops as a conference have the change to work on the Gray Book for antiphons. 

This was probably his Waterloo.

The bishops as a body rejected his motion.

Vote on Bishop Trautman’s motion: No=166; Yes=46 Defeated.

It remains to be seen how the bishops will eventually deal with this departure from regular procedure in the future. 

Unlooked for players on the correct side of this battle were, wait for it…. Archbp. Pilarcyk and Card. Mahony.  They both suggested that, after Bp. Trautman’s motion was addressed, the body of bishops could simply ratify what Card. George had done acting as president of the USCCB in his dealings with the Holy See over the Gray Book for antiphons. 

As it was, Bp. Trautman’s last ditch move to delay the process was rejected by the other bishops.  Then Archbp. Pilarczyk made the motion that the bishops let Rome handle the antiphons and the bishops approved the same overwhelmingly.

Vote to remand the antiphons to the CDW: No=20; Yes=194 Passes

That seems to have been the last hurrah.

Of course, it is Zuhlsdorf’s Law that whenever you want to show someone something with technology, at that very moment you need it, the technology will fail.  And the extent of the failure is in proportion to your urgency.

At the very moment when Card. George was to announce the results of the vote on Bp. Trautman’s motion, the TelecareTV coverage died… video froze and then went black as the audio died.  SO,…. I picked up a tweet from the Twitter feed of @usccbmedia.  Thanks to them we learned what happened.

We didn’t learn it from TelecareTV, tasked with the coverage.  We got it from Twitter.

It was a dramatic moment for more than one reason!

It is not quite time for a Te Deum, but this was a great step forward.

All during the presentation of the various elements for voting, Bp. Seratelli, head of the liturgy committee, reminded the bishops that this meeting, this November, was – according to the Holy See! – the last chance to vote on things.  After this, the Holy See would take charge and handle the issues that remained open.  It seems that the bishops took this to heart… a heart that was no doubt weary and flagging after all these years.

Going back to Bp. Trautman’s motion.

As this was going on I was reminded of what I read in the book that came out under the name of the former papal master ceremonies, Archbp. Piero Marini.  He described in detail the workings of the Consilium under the late Annibale Bugnini.  Marini explained that the Consilium realized they were changing doctrine with the liturgical changes.  An objective of Bugnini was to strip the Congregation for Rites of its power and redistribute it to territorial conferences.  One of the knives he used was the question of who gets to approve liturgical translations, Rome or the local conferences? 

This same dynamic and question returned at this meeting of the bishops, with Bp. Trautman playing the advocate of the old Bugnini/Marini objective.

But it is a sign of the times that the American bishops rejected that position and were content that the Holy See not only approve the translation of liturgical texts but, in the case of the antiphons, actually do the work.

You can see why Bp. Trautman was so intent on this and why he saw it as his last great chance.

But he is a sly one.  Perhaps he will find a loaded pistol on the ground even as he abandons his discharged musket.

Discuss.

FacebookEmailPinterestGoogle GmailShare/Bookmark

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Brick by Brick, SESSIUNCULA and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

101 Responses to Liturgical translation drama at the USCCB. Is it finally over?

  1. Oleksander says:

    sigh, today i didnt watch it so i missed the drama

    did they say how many supported Bp Trautman’s motion?

    Fascinating how he was blitzing this issue for the past several weeks with NCR etc

  2. The question is whether he will go off to Elba or St. Helena.

  3. sacerdosinaeternum says:

    What DRAMA! Wow!!! We should have known that Trautman would have such a last ditch effort after publicly clamoring about the text for months, and indeed years, up to now. But how great it was to see it utterly fail. The Bishops…that’s right…the BISHOPS rejected the amendment he proposed to put a jam in the process, now completed, Deo gratias! How great it was to also see so many good Bishops stand up and speak in support of Cardinal George. Now, lets hope that with the new Chairman of the Committee for Divine Worship elected this morning, the great work of Bishop Sarratelli for it’s catechesis and implementation will be faithfully done!

  4. jdskyles says:

    Using the metaphor of a musket, while showing the image of a grenadier. Is there another layer of symbolism here?

  5. Okay, your explanation of what happened makes sense…I was lost for a while wondering just what was going on.
    The Holy Spirit is surely at work. Praise be God forever!
    We need to continue our prayers and penance for this because the Evil One is obviously trying to do everything it can to subvert the accurate vernacular of the Holy Liturgy.

  6. TNCath says:

    Let’s face it: the bishops as a whole were not going to jump on Bishop Trautman’s bandwagon. I thought it hilarious that Cardinal George actually suggested that the CDW could be brought before the Signatura regarding the Antiphons. Do we really think Archbishop Burke would let allow that? Ha!

    However, I don’t think Bishop Trautman is done yacking yet.

  7. Mrs. O says:

    It was quite exciting especially, before the coffee break, Cardinal George mentioned that one way to handle it was to sue the CDW.
    It was also mentioned that they, the Bishops, knew about this earlier in the year.
    I was quite disappointed that a bigger network was not carrying this because I don’t think Telecare could handle it.
    On EWTN, Rocco mentions the following from his blog and live coverage:
    “first, as so many of you have asked, just spoke with Michael Warsaw — president of EWTN, who’s here with the crew… in a nutshell, Warsaw said that, as was its right, the conference transferred its coverage contract to Telecare and that, on seeing the latter’s plans, the ‘Bama-based outlet ultimately decided to just run a preview and wrap-up on their own instead of gavel-to-gavel. (EWTN had been running the cameras and the feed here for some two decades.) Apparently, the transfer call was communicated to the network quite late in the game — word around says mid-to-late October… and, well, that’s your story; Arroyo & Co. will run their wrap on The World Over, Friday night at 8. “

  8. jlong says:

    Drama indeed. Telecare did a poor job and I hope the US Bishops dont remain with them. I couldnt believe at the moment the Trautman’s motion vote was about to be given, the coverage went down. I was then happy to read on twitter how he had lost, and then a motion saying we accept Rome translating the antiphons was passed.

    Fr Z, from a canonical stance, did the Bishops conference have to vote to accept what the President had done in their name? What if they had voted no?

    I am glad they didnt, I am glad the translation was passed, and I am now hoping Rome will move swiftly and grant recognito so we can start using a far greater translation at the end of next year.

  9. catholicmidwest says:

    I have to admit that it was good to see most of the bishops come through on this one. It is getting better. Maybe the silly season is over at last-or maybe most of the bishops finally realize that we have much more serious things to attend to than this kind of bickering & resistance to legitimate authority.

    BTW, who won the USCCB chairman of liturgy committee spot for the next couple of years?

  10. jlong says:

    catholicmidwest

    Archbishop Gregory Aymond of New Orleans

  11. catholicmidwest says:

    the more progressive of the two, ewww

  12. Oleksander says:

    oh the numbers are in the post now :)

  13. Don Boyle says:

    The account on Rocco’s liveblog made Bp. Trautman sound desperate. At 2:53pm: CDW “can’t trump magisterial authority of an ecumenical council — what they offered was not an interpretation, but a reversal”

    This is dangerous territory–the American bishops don’t need to be questioning the authority of the Curia vis a vis the Spirit of Vatican II. But he didn’t get much support, thank goodness.

  14. Huxtaby says:

    As a resident of the UK is ++ Aymond ok?

  15. chonak says:

    Bp. Trautman’s contention that this was “a doctrinal issue” is hard to take seriously.

    If it were a matter of doctrine, it would be a “doctrine” invented in 1963. This “doctrine” would declare the right of national episcopal conferences, which didn’t exist before the 20th century, to approve liturgical translations, which didn’t exist in the Latin Church before the Second Vatican Council.

    His suggestion fits with the outmoded tendency of some Catholics to inflate the importance of the conferences, a tendency that should have ended when Pope John Paul II wrote _Apostolos Suos_ in 1997. I guess the mails are slow getting to Erie.

  16. AndyMo says:

    Wait, wait. Are they re-translating the antiphons for the Mass. Not that that’s a huge problem, except I’ve started a project in making English settings of the Communion Antiphons for use at Mass. Should I stop and wait for the new translations?

  17. lacrossecath says:

    “Unlooked for players on the correct side of this battle were, wait for it…. Archbp. Pilarcyk and Card. Mahony.”

    Did they see the writing on the wall since the Holy See would be taking this thing over, or are they really for the changes? I mean, we have been praying for Card. Mahony for some time…

  18. Penguins Fan says:

    Bishop Trautman is nothing if not tenacious, but I am tired of his bickering over the new Mass translation.

    I have a slight knowledge of Castillan Spanish and I only know a few prayers in Latin and even I can tell how bad the current English missal is.

  19. chonak says:

    AndyMo: It’s not necessary to stop and wait for the new translations. You’ll still be able to use the old settings under the GIRM provision that allows for “another suitable chant or song” (“alius cantus aptus”). That is, if “Be Not Afraid” is legal at Holy Communion, then your settings can be considered just another song, and therefore OK.

  20. murrayjr03 says:

    Please remind me, How many years until Bp.Trautman is 75. Pray for the Bishop that takes over that healm. Hopefully saying a low Mass somewhere.

  21. catholicmidwest says:

    Cdl Mahoney may have other irons in the fire and may not have wanted to spend whatever personal capital he might have on something that was shortly going to be shot in the town square anyway. Understandable from any ideological point of view except the most extreme. There may be a lot of this sort of thing going on because of other things happening at this meeting &/or in the church’s other affairs.

  22. Father, you write so clearly the reader feels he is actually attending this session. One sentence flew off the screen and knocked my glasses off: “Marini explained that the CONSILIUM realized they were changing DOCTRINE(my caps) with the liturgical changes”. Doesn’t this admission explain most of what the priests/laity have encountered since Paul VI announced the Novus Ordo Missae forty years ago? The fact that a new “religion” was being established which is at variance with the Church of two millenia is finally, gradually being admitted. Thank you for your fine reporting on these very timely and important matters!

  23. ipadre says:

    With Pope Benedict XVI at the helm and Cardinal Canizares at his side, I think the writing is on the wall. Those who voted against can whine and groan, but the Holy See WILL make the final decision! B-16 has been watching this drama for years and I don’t think he will let this fail. If it goes the wrong way, we are stuck with it for another generation or more!

  24. murrayjr03,

    Feast of St. John the Baptist, 2011.

  25. BenFischer says:

    In essence, I don’t have a problem with what Bp Trautman was doing. He is the shepherd of his flock, and if he thinks that this is the way to get them the “best deal” then he should raise these issues. His stalling, obstructionist tactics may not be pleasant, but it rarely is pleasant to deal with a tough negotiator, especially one who knows how to work the system. However, it seems that he has a problem now. After all his high profile complaining about the new translation, how does he sell it to his diocese?

    Monday: “this translation is awful.”
    Wednesday: “let’s all get ready for this great new translation.”

  26. Rich says:

    Thank Christ in Heaven.

  27. mpm says:

    Our long, international nightmare is over.

  28. Mitchell NY says:

    A Thank You to US Bishops on doing the right thing and for Bishop Trautman, ….pause…..I won’t go there, you may insert your own adjectives.

  29. JosephMary says:

    I recall the meeting, several years ago, when Bp. Trautman was suggested at the last moment to head the liturgy committee when he was not even on the docket. And then there were electirical difficulties and then a vote with more votes than persons and all kinds of strange things. B. Trautman won out that time and the more authentic translations had to wait.

  30. This may not be in line with the discussion, but I must ask for prayers for the new bishop of La Crosse, WI. Archbishop-elect Listecki has been appointed as the Archbishop of Milwaukee. It would be greatly appreciated if all of you would pray for our new diocesan bishop. Thank you!

  31. Henry Edwards says:

    Does anyone know where any of the translations approved today have been posted?

  32. wasn’t there to be a “mid-morning vote on the bench’s top post for things ritual: the chair-elect of the Bishops’ Committee on Divine Worship, who’ll take office next year.

    The BCDW slate finds a head-to-head between two freshly-named archbishops of contrasting styles — Detroit’s Allen Vigneron, one of the translation process’ staunchest backers, against Gregory Aymond of New Orleans, an ever-rising leader of the bench’s moderate bloc.”

    any news on that?

  33. I am happy that:

    1. USCCB meetings are telecast live even via twitter because the CBCP (in the Philippines) don’t.

    2. US bishops are looking more “trusting”, if I may say, to the liturgical renewal being implemented by our Holy Father, unlike Filipino bishops.

    3. Unlike Bp. Trautman who gets voted out by his fellow bishops, Filipino bishops trust the Liturgy to a few “kumbaya church” champions, like Chupungco.

    The latest news I am receiving is that the tandem of Chupungco and Diwa and the alums of Paul VI Liturgical Institute are hell bent on going up against the liturgical renewal being championed by the Holy Father through intensified seminars and “update their knowledge, understanding and practice of the liturgy.”

  34. from usccbmedia twitter feed:

    Abp. Aymond over Abp. Vigneron for Congregation on Divine Worship.

  35. Jon says:

    The vote:
    Aymond 126, Vigneron 110

  36. catholicmidwest says:

    Good info, Jon. Thanks.

  37. Henry – see if it’s here somewhere. I had not seen this website before: USCCB – Roman Missal Third Edition

  38. Central Valley says:

    Bishops of the Church of Rome listening to Rome and taking direction from Rome. Thanks be to GOD! Troutmouth is on the way out and if the recent appointment of bishops is any singnal, I think we can say we faught the fight, we kept the faith and as we know from the last chapter of the book, we win. I just didn’t think is would be so quick.

  39. thomas tucker says:

    Now, now guys.
    No trash talking on Archbishop Aymond.
    I know the man and he is solidly orthodox, loves the Church, and is not tolerant of liturgical or any other type of abuse.

  40. Nuts! I went to use Telecare’s On Demand to watch some of the action from earlier this afternoon and it says that there are too many users. I got in once, there were merely 50. Compare that to nearly 1000 at the height of liturgical discussion when Telecare began having spasms. Now, it can’t handle more than 50 people it seems.

  41. BenFischer says:

    Yeah. Telecare’s been cutting out on me a lot, too. Boo! However, it is nice that they have archived video (or, it WOULD be nice, if it worked). I don’t think EWTN did that.

  42. lhatch says:

    Very interesting that the contract was given to Telecare. I liked the fact that it was done over the internet… I especially liked the setup that Rocco Palmo had on his blog… when I was at a place that I couldn’t have the volume up, I could read live text updates and watch it all from his blog.

    I think the point made by Ben needs to be evaluated. Bp. Trautman has spent many a day raising hell over the issue of translation and now that he has been defeated, are we to think that he is going to embrace the translation with the same vigor as he did against it? I only hope so… for the sake of unity… but we all know how bishops can be. Praying for them…

  43. Fr. Steve says:

    Henry said,

    “Does anyone know where any of the translations approved today have been posted?”

    They were here http://www.usccb.org/meetings/2009Fall/ on the sidebar, but they seemed to have been removed.

  44. mr. crouchback says:

    chonak says:

    “If it were a matter of doctrine, it would be a “doctrine” invented in 1963. This “doctrine” would declare the right of national episcopal conferences, which didn’t exist before the 20th century, to approve liturgical translations, which didn’t exist in the Latin Church before the Second Vatican Council.”

    That was not an innovation without precedent. Before Trent, dioceses and provinces had considerable freedom to legislate on the rites used within their respective jurisdiction. Certainly it’s hard to contend that a particular division of power–i.e., Rome vs. the bishops–on these matters will *per se* favor tradition-friendly outcomes in liturgical matters. As Alcuin Reid persuasively argues, the extreme, ultramontane attitude prevalent in the pre-conciliar Church likely helped facilitate the dubious liturgical reforms before and after Vatican II. Relatedly, Eastern Orthodoxy has successfully (and tenaciously) preserved its rich liturgical heritage without the aid of any strong central authority.

    In practice, I almost always side with Rome over the bishops’ conferences, regardless of the issue. In theory, though, I’m reticent to to adopt “Let Rome decide!” as the answer to every question. Not every Pope has been (or will be) as saintly, wise, and brilliant as Pope Benedict XVI.

  45. Ardella Crawford says:

    Thank God for the outcome of this vote! Looks like we need to pray for the Philippines.

  46. AndyMo says:

    AndyMo: It’s not necessary to stop and wait for the new translations. You’ll still be able to use the old settings under the GIRM provision that allows for “another suitable chant or song” (“alius cantus aptus”). That is, if “Be Not Afraid” is legal at Holy Communion, then your settings can be considered just another song, and therefore OK.

    Thanks, Chonak. I actually considered just that shortly after I posted. If some of the garbage out there is acceptable, surely a slightly-different translation of the Communion Antiphons isn’t as bad.

    The only problem is that one of my goals in this endeavor is to get as close as possible to the liturgical texts (yes, we also use the normative chant). I wonder if it’s possible to get a glimpse of this Gray Book anytime soon, or if we have to wait for a couple of years until the new sacramentaries are released.

  47. catholicmidwest says:

    Two things:

    I. The translations have been remanded to Rome, and they’re now in the keeping of the Holy See, the CDW, Vox Clara and the new reformulated ICEL. Here’s hoping that no one somewhere along the way raises a credible-to-somebody objection to the work done by Cdl George in Rome before the meeting. The grounds of these questions are highly controversial–still. Remember also that the English translations are used as foundational documents for many other translations and functions and there is a lot at stake all around. Net result? The sooner we have those translations in our hands, the better. As you’ve seen, using a translation is 99/100 of having a translation. Once it’s being used, it’s almost impossible to displace, as you’ve seen. That, it turns out, is how most of this works (and Bp Trautman et al know it). It’s important for us to draw that conclusion and remember it.

    The other thing: As with the rollout of the CCC, we may see some local opposition (refusal to budge, it’s a local tradition, we always do it that way, that’s because….etc). Recall the large number of things that were published to “help” you with the CCC–some of which were good, some of which were really weird and published before (!) the CCC. And while the progressive wing appears to be in some degree of remission, know that the largest employer of dissidents in the US is still the church herself. Most of these folks work for dioceses or parishes, publishing houses or universities/schools.

    Now, I watch CTA and the like because it’s essential to know what people who are opposed to your views are up to. People in that wing of the church are starting, on the QT, to attend their own house churches while still employed by the church and maybe it’s part of why they’re getting quieter. In fact, leading dissident organizations are facilitating this trend and a few others (American Catholic Council etc etc). I don’t know what effect this will have, in terms of direct lower level opposition, but it deserves watching. We could see some localized funniness which might be designed to confuse/delay people or maintain positions of employment.

    However, remember Fr Z’s rules of engagement? We need to be kind but intrepid. You know this mess is going to straighten out. =) I think we’re on our way!

  48. jlmorrell says:

    Is there any way to find out how specific Bishops voted?

  49. rinkevichjm says:

    The real reason he was voted down was because they aren’t used in most parishes as they can be replaced by hymns and usually are on Sundays. On weekdays when there isn’t a hymn, you’d be lucky to hear it chanted in most places. I think the rubric says to use either the antiphons or another suitable song. However many places omit it (or chant it so it can’t be heard). So the common people really won’t be effected by any change very much. He might have gotten further with a motion to table it until they could read them fully, but I doubt many Bishops would have cared.

  50. Fr. Steve says:

    catholicmidwest,

    You said, “Here’s hoping that no one somewhere along the way raises a credible-to-somebody objection to the work done by Cdl George in Rome before the meeting.”

    But, I think the bishops already instinctivly gave a solid answer. The Council gave the authority to the commission, and the commision’s authority was given by the Pope to the Congregation. Furthermore, the Congregation doesn’t act alone, but in the name of the Holy Father, and he has direct authority over the matter, and no amount of bishops could ever take that away.

  51. catholicmidwest says:

    I think you’re right, Fr. Steve. Since the American bishops have always been the ones that did most of the kicking over translations (and authority in general), thus the most likely to do the obstructive screaming & yelling, and simultaneously the ones with the most money & power, but yet they have voted it “finished,” I think it’s done and over with.

    All the English language groups + the Holy See are on board with it, and who would consider the delegation of the antiphons (of all things) a huge problem but us? Even if some other national conference cared about some principle of the thing, what could they do since the ratification of Cdl George’s actions passed his own conference, thereby acting as a voted approval which is all anyone could credibly claim anyway?

    I wasn’t going to watch the telecast, but I’m glad I did go back tonight and see just this afternoon’s part about the liturgy approvals. Amazing. Just extraordinary. I haven’t watched one of these conferences in several years and they have changed. There are a few minutes in the middle there that are priceless–the antidote for years of frustration…except it froze at the most crucial time…ROFLOL.

  52. Fr. Steve says: But, I think the bishops already instinctivly gave a solid answer. The Council gave the authority to the commission, and the commision’s authority was given by the Pope to the Congregation. Furthermore, the Congregation doesn’t act alone, but in the name of the Holy Father, and he has direct authority over the matter, and no amount of bishops could ever take that away.

    Agreed. And if there is any attempt to stop it in Rome over this, watch how fast it finds resolution. I’m sure there are people already looking into the matter should it be pressed further.

  53. chironomo says:

    I watched throughout the day… it seemed that Cardinal George was growing tired of Bp. Trautmann. I think I actually saw him roll his eyes as the Trout again raised his hand. I think the final vote on Bp. Trautmanns motion is a good indication of the shrinking ranks of the really progressive Bishops in the USCCB. Ten years ago passing that motion would have been a breeze…although the whole issue of translation would never have gotten this far 10 years ago…

  54. Haec Dies says:

    The Erie Times News for Suday the 15th of November had a full page article about the life and times of Bishop Trautman, no doubt in anticipation of his sucessful bid to stall the approval of the Mass changes. It will be interesting to see if the same paper prints any thing of the recent happenings with regard to the Bishop. Think I’ll call the religious editor today.

  55. chironomo says:

    Yeah. Telecare’s been cutting out on me a lot, too. Boo

    I don’t think they were expecting the number of viewers that they are getting. Blogs such as this one and others have generated considerable interest in the broadcasts. I just don’t think they were expecting more than in the hundreds…

  56. John V says:

    I’m not sure if all of the U.S. adaptations approved in Action Item #8 are posted anywhere, but I believe one of them is the Memorial Acclamation “Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.” Any thoughts on whether this will receive the recognitio?

  57. Frank H says:

    Chironomo –

    I got a kick out of Card. George’s reference to Bp. Trautman’s “guerilla warfare” tactics.

  58. Frank H says:

    John V –

    I’m betting “no”.

  59. AM says:

    This is rather a late question.. but what does “the antiphons” refer to in this translation project? I know perfectly well what an antiphon is in general. But if this is about translating the entrance and communion antiphons of the 2002 Missal, why weren’t they translated with the rest of the propers?

    Surely (?) this isn’t about translating the offertory antiphons, since they don’t appear in the novus ordo Missal at all.

    In my parish the antiphons are never used, of course, for the reason that rinkevichjm points out, namely that a suitable song (e.g. Eagle’s Wings) replaces them. Also the proper oration is only used about half the time, because the ICEL “alternate opening prayer” is often used.

    Also, certain alternate “Eucharistic Prayers” are used in my parish, and I bet they’ll be used more often if the new translation doesn’t include them. Does anyone know: are the Swiss Canon and the various Prayers for Masses with Children included in the this translation?

  60. Henry Edwards says:

    John V: … the Memorial Acclamation “Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.” Any thoughts on whether this will receive the recognitio?

    Not if the CDW obeys its own Liturgiam authenticam. This crowd-pleaser comes (I understand) from a folk song refrain; it’s not a translation of either of the three original Latin memorial acclamations.

  61. jlong says:

    John V

    it doesnt appear in Eucharistic Prayer I, which has already been granted recognito.

  62. Allan S. says:

    I actually don’t have a problem with Bp. Trautmann’s antics:

    1. His beliefs and oppostion are, I believe, genuine and pastorally intended. He is sincere (mistaken, yes, but sincere).
    2. He is using the lawful and proper channels open to a Bishop opposed to the translations (his tactics are objectively legitimate).

    Let him speak. Let him fight. Listen to him – then move forward.

    Now, if Bp. Trautmann were to attempt to sabotage or “diss” the new translation once it has been promulgated, then that would entirely change my opinion of him. But that has not happened. (Yet).

    Just another Shepherd doing his job as best he knows how.

  63. becket1 says:

    I’ve been seeing allot of “new” RSV CEs’ and Douay Rheims’ translations coming out. Tan just published a new Douay https://www.tanbooks.com/index.php/page/shop:bibles/ and St Benedict Press has a new RSV CE http://www.saintbenedictpress.com/Catholic-Classics/Revised-Standard-Version-Bibles.cfm?ct=1366 . I would hope Rome would completely do away with the NAB, and replace it with the RSV CE. Would be nice to be able to purchase the exact scriptures that you read in the Bible and hear at the NO Mass. Unlike today where the Catholic Book Publishing Company prints an “inclusive” version of the NAB, but the Liturgical text has a “non inclusive” version of the NAB.

  64. chorst01 says:

    And you think the break in the TelecareTV feed was an accident? Maybe, but maybe not. I think there’s more to learn about why TelecareTV carried the feed but EWTN did not.

  65. chironomo says:

    This is rather a late question.. but what does “the antiphons” refer to in this translation project? I know perfectly well what an antiphon is in general. But if this is about translating the entrance and communion antiphons of the 2002 Missal, why weren’t they translated with the rest of the propers?

    For what it’s worth… I will be looking into this very question and posting my thoughts sometime in the next few days (just click on my name to go to my blog)…. I think there might actually be more here than meets the eye given the call for “a repertoire of texts for liturgical singing” in Liturgiam Authenticam and the USCCB’s unwillingness to take on this task themselves. The Antiphons would, of course, fit this bill quite well, and the CDW would be just the body to submit such a “repertoire of texts” as is called for in LA.

  66. Marcin says:

    I was watching the procedings. Bp. Trautman was quite a valiant musketter, indeed. Eventually, the Chair tired of him commented about guerilla warfare going on on the floor. Intentions of Bp. Trautman would be clear even for someone not aware of this liturgical conflict.

    Booyah!

  67. Marcin says:

    […] That is, if “Be Not Afraid” is legal at Holy Communion, then your settings can be considered just another song, and therefore OK.

    Is it really that easy? Certainly I would love it so. But does alius cantus aptus have to be approved with nihil obstat? If so, the use of just ANY translation of antiphons, however orthodox, would be illicit. Latin original I assume doesn’t need to be approved by any apparatchik, does it?

  68. Ogard says:

    Ad Henry Edwards.

    About the Memorial Acclamation “Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.” It should be dropped because it is doctrinally subversive.

    In the Latin text the phrase “Mysterium Fidei” stands alone, without the introduction: “Let us proclaim”, and it evidently refers back to the Consecration from which it was taken out in order to emphaisize that Christ under both species is the Mystery we proclaim.

    Not so with the English introduction: the acclamations, which are supposed to refer to Christ on the altar, are diverted to the propositions articulated by the acclamations themselves. Now, the three Latin acclamations, and their English versions however inaccurate, being in the second person singular, can be nevertheless, but not necessarily, taken as referring to Christ on the altar.

    The peculiar English acclamation, however, which has no Latin equivalent, and is always listed as the first and thus used most frequently, is in the third person singular. So, it is not addressed to Christ, but it is referred to His death, resurrection, and second coming, AS IF HE WERE NOT ON THE ALTAR.

    Is it too much to suppose that those who pushed this acclamation through were influential individuals whose aim was to undermine the doctrine on transubstantiation, or at “best”: couldn’t care less about it?

  69. mpm says:

    Ogard,

    No, it is not too much to suppose that (without other evidence), but there is nothing to prevent us from thwarting their want of faith by infusing that proclamation with faith in our hearts — at least until it is, if it is, removed from the list of authentic acclamations.

  70. Jerry says:

    Folks, may we have some respect for Bp. Trautman? While I don’t agree with his position on the translations, the name calling (“the Trout”, “Trautperson”, and even “Trautman” without a designation of his office) bothers me. These forms of address are not respectful of anyone, especially not a Catholic priest.

    Thanks for your consideration.

  71. On text availability, Rocco Palmo liveblogging a short time ago, wrote:

    first, in response to those asking for texts of the completed liturgy items, you won’t see ‘em — given both ICEL’s copyright and the reality that the texts could still be changed (Holy See has edit rights before granting recognitio), the veil won’t lift on the full texts til after confirmation’s granted… apparently, they were wiped from the USCCB site early yesterday after mistakenly being posted to it

    Click here to read this particular stream (and the start button on “Cover it Live”)

    Go back to his homepage for coverage of the other sessions. He had quite a bit of detail. He also offered this in the feed above:

    speaking of TV, word went around late in the day that a “power surge” during the liturgy debate caused the hiccups on the Telecare feed… the way it was relayed, sounded like the number of hits at that point (4x what it was all the rest of the day) caused the surge…so it was either our lighting or your feed…again, that’s what it sounded like
    Wednesday November 18, 2009 10:30

    Wednesday November 18, 2009 10:29

  72. Re: songs and translations and such

    Frankly, if you’re not publishing _a hymnal_ and your pastor’s fine with it, the Church doesn’t care. Nobody reviews your motets or has anything official to say about what you sing, unless you should become such a nuisance that people complain to the bishop and he forbids you.

    With hymnals, I think there has been some comment in some document about them having to be approved, but I really haven’t seen anything. Most hymnals have some bishop somewhere sign off on them, just as a business matter; and that seems to be sufficient permission for the whole US.

    Copyright on texts is where all the muscle and lawyering and charges are. Doctrinal and liturgical permission? Well, hopefully you know how to write music like an adult and a Catholic, ’cause nobody is going to stop you. Your pastor’s annoyance or boredom, or that of a good complainer who donates plenty, is much more likely to shut you down.

  73. I’ll add that, by rights, all this freedom ought to have created a beautiful liturgical world where every parish was full of amazingly sacred and orthodox music, new and old. It really stinks that people have gone the opposite way.

  74. tm30 says:

    Fr. John,

    With regard to Twitter, I’m wondering what its impact will be on the next Papal election and preventing leaks – authentic or counterfeit – from the conclave, and the danger of spreading misinformation like wildfire.

  75. RichR says:

    FWIW,

    I am in a men’s Gregorian chant schola in the Austin Diocese (the Abp. Aymond recently was transferred from). He loved our chant schola, and even told a congregation that he wished he could clone us and put us all over the diocese. He would request us at episcopal events. He also had the TLM in Austin transferred to the Cathedral.

    I’m not saying he’s a Traditionalist, but he’s not against traditional liturgy. He’s fairly moderate, and very knowledgeable. I am hopeful of his work on the BCDW.

  76. Tominellay says:

    JosephMary’s comment (at 7:38 pm) is interesting, and Rocco made mention of it a couple days ago, referring to “the most astonishing thing”: Bishop Trautman’s 2003 nomination – from the floor – and election to the worship post, over Cardinal Rigali and (then-)Bishop Vigneron. That was some professional politicking…

  77. CarpeNoctem says:

    You know what would be nice?

    How about the USCCB asking permission to make the Memorial Acclamation optional at all Masses in the OF? If I am not mistaken, it is not said in “private” Masses.

    There there is a natural rhythm which I think the people could really appreciate by not having this distraction and allowing the Eucharistic Prayer to naturally flow into their post-narratives. In some cases and situations, this might very well be… how shall I say? …the pastorally sensitive thing to do.

  78. catholicmidwest says:

    Don’t make the mistake of thinking that the USCCB is as docile, “conservative” (or whatever you call it), or interested in fine words from Rome as it might look from the vote totals. Yesterday, the bishops found themselves in a *trap of their own making.* There was a time frame within which they had to act or lose the ability to say anything at all. Many of them voted for the translations because it was far better than the alternatives, in terms of explanation and necessity. And now they are committed, some of them to something they would not have chosen for themselves. We have to help them to take the bitter pill.

  79. catholicmidwest says:

    The closing of the trap in the hands of Cdl George was a beautiful thing indeed, driven by many things also.

  80. Nathan says:

    How much of a chance is there that the new translation will simply be ignored by significant numbers of priests? It seems that the liturgical left has been accustomed to simply doing whatever it wanted to do for a very long time.

    In Christ,

  81. “Bp. Trautman … said that the Constitution on Sacred Liturgy requies that competent territorial authority has to approve translations.”

    He’s not exactly right though, is he?

    Sacrosanctum Concilium Art. 22

    1. Regulation of the sacred liturgy depends solely on the authority of the Church, that is, *on the Apostolic See* and, as laws may determine, on the bishop.

    2. In virtue of power conceded by the law, the regulation of the liturgy *within certain defined limits* belongs also to various kinds of competent territorial bodies of bishops legitimately established.

    Sacrosanctum Concilium Art. 36.

    1. Particular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites.

    2. But since the use of the mother tongue, whether in the Mass, the administration of the sacraments, or other parts of the liturgy, frequently may be of great advantage to the people, the limits of its employment may be extended. This will apply in the first place to the readings and directives, and to some of the prayers and chants, according to the regulations on this matter to be laid down separately in subsequent chapters.

    3. These norms being observed, it is for the *competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned in Art. 22, 2,* to decide whether, and to what extent, the vernacular language is to be used; *their decrees are to be approved, that is, confirmed, by the Apostolic See.* And, whenever it seems to be called for, this authority is to consult with bishops of neighboring regions which have the same language.

    4. Translations from the Latin text into the mother tongue intended for use in the liturgy must be approved by the competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned above.

    The Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy indicactes that the Conference enjoys authority in this matter only to the extent that it is granted by the Holy See. “within defined limits.” Authority was never truly transfered to the local conferences as Bp. Trautman would seem to wish. Final approval always rests with Rome and the Council didn’t change that.

    Given that Rome issued a “you know what or get off the pot” deadline to the USCCB, it seems the Holy See was prepared to assert its prerogative even if Bp. Trautman’s last ditch effort to delay things was approved.

  82. jt83 says:

    I fully support the efforts to secure a new, accurate translation of the Mass in English. The cynical side of me tends to think that liberals will continue to adhere to the current translation that has been in place for the past generation. For instance, clergy (such as Bp. Trautman) or even my own pastor, for that matter, who do not support the new translation will still say “Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith” when “The Mystery of Faith” alone is mandated in the new translation because they do not see it as a big deal to include the other words..after all, they’re already making up prayers and ad libing with the current translation as it is. What’s to make us think that they won’t just continue making up their own prayers, keeping things they like and omitting parts they don’t? Liturgical abuse is rampant in my part of the world as it is…I am anxious to see how it will be implemented. I can say with certainty that it surely won’t be received positively by most priests. I think that for this process to work, bishops must begin enforcing proper liturgical norms in their Dioceses, rather than taking a hands off approach like my bishop saying “My role is bishop, not the liturgical police.” Otherwise we’re just gonna get the same old stuff…

  83. John V says:

    Louie

    I think Bishop Trautman cited SC Article 36, Paragraph 4, “Translations from the Latin text into the mother tongue intended for use in the liturgy must be approved by the competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned above.” His argument was that the USCCB hadn’t seen, much less approved, the translation of the antiphons.

  84. Nathan says:

    There’s an interesting discussion regarding the translation going on over at “Commonweal.” One comment was particularly intriguing–when one commenter pointed out that the new translation is much more accurate in comparison to the current translation, someone said that the new texts, rather, should be compared against the “translation it could have been.”

    It also seems that among many of the commenters there, the issue at hand wasn’t really the quality or worth of the translation, but the perceived violation of collegiality by the Holy See. It’s another example, IMO, of how a number of people involved in the “liturgy wars” are much more energized by the question of who calls the shots instead of whether or not the liturgy itself is helping us on our way to heaven.

    In Christ,

  85. chonak says:

    I wonder if the sponsors of the telecast (e.g., the Knights of Malta) might be able to work to ensure broader and more reliable distribution of the conference feed next time.

  86. chonak says:

    Behind the question of “who decides” is a conflict over philosophy.

    Bp. Trautman, for example, doesn’t approve of Liturgiam Authenticam, and the consciously elevated style of language for which it calls.

    Some bishops present their opposition to hieratic language as a desire to put the Mass into “American English”, rather than have a common international English text.

    Sometimes I wonder if there are clergy maintaining the ’60s dream of an “American Mass” which would use original texts and have its own style rather than be a presentation of the Roman Missal in English. That is an important ecclesiological question: do clergy consider us and themselves as members of the Latin Church, or are they implicitly following a model of “national churches”?

    Note for chironomo: the link to your blog (on your name above) isn’t working.

  87. Ogard says:

    Ad mpm

    “but there is nothing to prevent us from thwarting their want of faith by infusing that proclamation with faith in our hearts” – true, but what about those who have hardly ever heard that, after Consecration, Christ is in the altar, and are asked to proclaim that He somewhere else?

    Lex orandi – lex credendi. In fact VII has requested that the liturgical texts be changed to “express clearly the sacred content they are meant to signify” (SC 21), and the changes “should not be made unless when a real and definite advantage will accrue to the Church” (23). “The Ordinary of the Mass is to be revised in a way that will reveal more clearly the real function of each of the parts” (50). It is “of greatest importance that the faithful should be able to understand easily the signs conveyed in the sacraments” (59). Etc.

    What we have got is not the more clear liturgy, but the more obscure one, while it is supposed contain “a great deal of teaching for the faithful” (33). It not only supposes faith, we are told, but “by words and objects” is supposed to “nourish, strengthen and express it” (59).

  88. AM says:

    Nathan asked “How much of a chance is there that the new translation will simply be ignored by significant numbers of priests?”

    I think – not much chance, but there are lots of ways in which the Missal can be sidestepped, such as : substituting songs, using Mass settings that don’t (even) follow the current translation (**), improvising responses, using alternate prayers that are not in the Missal. These practices will continue until they are stopped deliberately.

    (**) e.g. at the end of the canon, instead of “amen”, to sing “amen, Alleluia, for ever, and ever, for ever, alleluia, for ever and ever, amen”, or to sing the Gloria “responsively” instead of as in the Missal.

  89. Marius2k4 says:

    ABOUT BISHOP AYMOND:

    I was raised in the diocese of Austin, TX, where Bp. Aymond was the ordinary until a few months ago, when he was promoted to Archbishop of New Orleans. He is the sort of fellow who recoils at one kneeling to kiss his ring, enjoys masses full of bongo drums and guitars (we certainly had them at St. Mary’s in College Station), and only after some difficulty gave me an indult for a Tridentine Wedding (after I made references to Summorum Pontificum; our parish didn’t want to make waves). He had success while he was Bishop of Austin namely because of the 12,500 Catholic students at Texas A&M who gave him most of his priests.

    With all due respect to a prelate, I do wish he hadn’t been elected to anything concerning the liturgy.

  90. Okay folks: This entry really isn’t about Bp. Aymond.

  91. thomas tucker says:

    Amen to that.
    I’ll just say this, and Father, feel free to delete it: bishops as well as parish priests have a very
    difficult job trying to keep so many different kinds of people with so many varying viewpoints happy.
    God bless them.

  92. John V: I think Bishop Trautman cited SC Article 36, Paragraph 4, “Translations from the Latin text into the mother tongue intended for use in the liturgy must be approved by the competent territorial ecclesiastical authority mentioned above.” His argument was that the USCCB hadn’t seen, much less approved, the translation of the antiphons.

    Hi John,

    I imagine you’re right; that’s probably where he’s hanging his hat, but SC 36.4 points to what is mentioned “above” which clearly indicates that ultimate authority rests with Rome unless otherwise granted by the Holy See. Bp. Trautman seems to be approaching this backwards, as though Rome *needs* the territorial authority’s approval. In any event, once Cardinal George spoke on behalf of the Conference concerning the antiphons that should have settled it.

    I just get the sense that Bp. Trautman believes, or at least wants to believe, that the Council granted unassailable authority to the local bishops’ conferences in liturgical matters, but it’s not there.

  93. catholicmidwest says:

    Allan S,
    Surely you can’t be serious.

  94. catholicmidwest says:

    Ogard, you said, “The peculiar English acclamation, however, which has no Latin equivalent, and is always listed as the first and thus used most frequently, is in the third person singular. So, it is not addressed to Christ, but it is referred to His death, resurrection, and second coming, AS IF HE WERE NOT ON THE ALTAR.”

    I always find it completely jarring, myself, for that reason. It’s like talking about a person as though they weren’t in the room, and of course people, particularly Americans with their keenly honed audiovisual sense (thx to movies & tv), pick up on that. It’s a horrible message given at the worst possible time to the worst possible pool of listeners.

  95. catholicmidwest says:

    If the bishops want to worry about inappropriate cultural adaptations, it seems to me there’s EXHIBIT #1.

  96. Rich says:

    The bishops have now approved the final sections of the translations.

    Te Deum

  97. ohkymom says:

    Father, Is there any way for us to know how our own bishop voted? Mine is Bishop Foys – Covington KY Thanks!

  98. Allan S. says:

    “Allan S, Surely you can’t be serious.”

    I am. And don’t call me Shirley. (apologies to Airplane fans)

    I may be wrong, but has not Bp. Trautman acted lawfully in this matter? Can he not lobby fellow Bishops? Can he not make motions and have them voted upon? Can he not speak against the new translations while they are still a matter of debate? Are his concerns not genuine and sincere – in the sense that he, personally, actually believes what he says to be true?

    Look, I agree with everyone here about needing these new translations. Reform of the reform, etc. – I’m in, OK?

    But won’t the victory be all the more meaningful for having had a vigorous and free debate? Has Bp. Trautman ever said that he will refuse to obey and use the new translation if it is approved by the Holy See? Until that happens all we have here is a Bishop doing his job – without fear – the best he knows how.

    We believe him to be in error, sure, but that doesn’t justify the crude pile on I am seeing here. Unless, as I have admitted may be possible, I am in error about Bp. Trautman having acted lawfully in his opposition. Please correct me if I err.

    I do think, respectfully, that calling him a “jihadist” is inappropriate. I understand the term to refer to murdering suicide bombers. Not funny here.

  99. mpm says:

    Allan S(hirley),

    [I’m just playing along with your sense of humor, no disrespect intended.]

    I think you are right. Lacking knowledge of Bishop Trautman’s intentions, one ought not accuse him of anything.

    On the other hand, although evolution requires a great deal of time, surely we are not evolving, but merely translating a finite amount of material from Latin into some reasonably fit English. It should not take eons of time to do. There is something called the common good.

  100. catholicmidwest says:

    Allen,

    What you are making is either a secular appeal to populist governance, OR a legitimate case for a bishop speaking his mind as standard parliamentary procedure allows. There is a not-subtle difference between the two, but I’m not sure which you are asserting because your remark is not clear on that point.

    It is a fact that under common parliamentary procedure, which is being used by the USCCB (and that’s fine as far as it goes), Bp. Trautman has the ability to ask questions, make a case and so on, as long as he obeys the meeting protocols. That’s fine and no one is disputing that.

    What’s really odd is that he says that his objections are dogmatic in nature–he did say that–check the video, the transcript and his writings on the matter. Doctrine is the essence of his objection to the antiphons being translated by the Congregation. I’m fairly certain that there is no such dogma, regardless of the verbiage that he uses in his attempt to support his view. To support his point, he’s proof-texting single sentences from the documents of VII and ignoring context. He’s actively employing the hermeneutic of rupture to do it, because that’s the only way he can make his point (and it’s what he really believes). And I think he’s been over-ruled pretty solidly on that point.

    Face it, no one goes to the wall over words qua letters in a row. It’s the fact that they mean something to him–something that they transcend–that’s got him foaming at the mouth. He believes that VII rewrote the Church’s mission and her interpretation of history. And that’s just wrong and doesn’t make any sense–UNLESS you believe that there was a giant rupture in 1963, where the old church died and a new one was born.

    That’s what people see Bp. Trautman saying and that’s why he gets the kinds of remarks directed his way that he does, from the various groups of commenters here and elsewhere.

  101. catholicmidwest says:

    And I do believe that Bp. Trautman has made no secret of his beliefs and of his assertions. There are plenty of articles and videos of him asserting these things online, in magazines and so on.