WaPo on the new translation and an “ineffable” sighting!

Just what you were waiting for.  WaPo on the implementation of the new, corrected translation.

Catholics’ Mass liturgy changing; ‘ritual whiplash’ ahead?
By Michelle Boorstein, Published: October 27

English-speaking Catholics are bracing for the biggest changes to their Mass since the 1960s, a shift some leaders warn could cause “ritual whiplash.” [What's with the hysteria?]

The overhaul, which will become mandatory Nov. 27, is aimed at unifying the more than 1 billion Catholics worldwide with a translation that is as close as possible to the original Latin version. [Wellll... not really.  Closer but not as close as possible.] It allows for less independence and diversity of interpretation in a church that in recent decades has tried to retain more control over how Catholicism is defined.  [Who else is going to control how Catholicism is defined? For pity's sake.  But notice that you, as a liberal reader of WaPo, are not supposed to take sides against the Church because of those key words "independence and diversity".]

Recent popes have emphasized orthodoxy and hierarchy, [Non-recent Popes did not emphasize "orthodoxy and hierarchy"?] particularly in the West, where religious identity is increasingly fluid. Catholic hospitals and schools have been required to more clearly espouse church teachings, [What a surprise!  Catholic hospitals and schools should be "Catholic"!] and Pope Benedict XVI has stressed the sole truth of Catholicism over other faiths, even declining this month to pray with Hindus, Jews and others at an interreligious event.  [What is the Pope supposed to say? "Hey!  All those other religions are just as right as we are!"?]

The new translation changes the majority of sentences in the Mass. The prayers and call-and-response dialogue between the priest and the congregation are different, transforming the dialogue that Catholics under 40 have used in church their entire lives.[Which is nothing compared to the trauma caused by the changes to Mass in the 1960's.] Some leaders warn that the shift could cause “ritual whiplash” among those accustomed to a worship script so familiar that most recite it from memory. [Let's get all dreamy about "And also with you."]

Reaction to the changes has been intense, in some ways fueling a Catholic culture war that began when the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s imposed far more sweeping changes designed to open up and modernize the church. Some traditionalists say the new translation of the ritual is richer and — because it’s less conversational — more mysterious and spiritual. [I love that use of "culture war" coming from an MSM outlet like WaPo.]

“At first I thought it was an affront, the Vatican coming down on us. But after thinking about it, I see it as something that will bring us all back toward the center,” said Emily Strand, 35, a former campus minister at the University of Dayton who has attended Mass regularly throughout her life. “Vatican II was an excuse for people to do whatever they wanted with the liturgy.”

But more modern Catholics, and some who are already disaffected, say the new language is an awkward imposition that will distance people from the church. The translation “wouldn’t affect me going [to church] or not,’’ said Vilma Linares, who was walking near St. Matthew’s Cathedral earlier this week with a friend at lunchtime. “But the less conversational the Mass, the more they will alienate people.”  [And how does he know that?]

Erie, Pa., Bishop Donald Trautman [75] says that such words as “consubstantial” and “chalice” and a Jesus “born ineffably of the inviolate Virgin” won’t help Catholics get closer to God.  [It's ineffable.]

“We have to keep in mind these are prayer texts being used by priests at a Mass,” he said. “People should be able to understand them when they are heard.” [Once again, we see in evidence the presupposition that you are not very smart.]

Others, including clergy, have protested that the new translation replaces ones approved by the U.S. bishops.

Perhaps the most basic change will be when the priest says: “The Lord be with you.” The congregation will no longer say “And also with you.” The new response is “And with your spirit.”

Some changes are more controversial. The line that said Jesus died on the cross “for you and for all so that sins may be forgiven” will change to “for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.” [Because that what "pro multis" means.]

Other changes emphasize the difference between common English and Latin: “When supper was ended, He took the cup” becomes: “In a similar way, when supper was ended, He took this precious chalice in His holy and venerable hands.”  [Because that is what the Latin says.]

[...]Traditionalists worried that having different translations around the world opened the door to confusion. The past decade has seen much debate in the church about the new translation, with the Vatican rejecting less-literal translations that some saw as more poetic and contemporary. [or just plain wrong.]

When asked this week about the issue, several priests repeated an inside joke: What’s the difference between a liturgist and a terrorist? You can negotiate with a terrorist.

[...]

Monsignor Andrew Wadsworth, executive director of the commission in charge of English translations of liturgy, said the reforms will promote unity. “The way we worship is what we believe,” he said. “If you want to have unity of belief, texts used in worship need to be the same.

Several priests in the region said the controversy was being overblown.

“There are other things more important to focus on,” said the Rev. Gerry Creedon of Holy Family in Dale City, “like drone bombings.” [Good grief!  An attack on President Obama in an article in WaPo!]

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40 Responses to WaPo on the new translation and an “ineffable” sighting!

  1. wmeyer says:

    So much concern for those who are about to be whip-lashed by change. Yet forty years ago, the Latin Mass was ripped unceremoniously from our churches with essentially no preparation of the faithful. But we’re the ones being unreasonable, when asking, asking, I repeat, for an occasional Mass in Latin.

  2. capchoirgirl says:

    They also had a column about how justice Scalia is pro death penalty, and how this is not ‘correct’ Catholic teaching. Apparently the wapo and its readers can’t differentiate between the church’s abortion positi

  3. capchoirgirl says:

    (silly iPhone cut me off!) and the position on abortion. Led to a very unintelligent chat as well.

  4. wmeyer says:

    And apparently they are incapable of the quick search that would have led them to CCC 2267:

    Assuming that the guilty party’s identity and responsibility have been fully determined, the traditional teaching of the Church does not exclude recourse to the death penalty, if this is the only possible way of effectively defending human lives against the unjust aggressor.
    If, however, non-lethal means are sufficient to defend and protect people’s safety from the aggressor, authority will limit itself to such means, as these are more in keeping with the concrete conditions of the common good and are more in conformity to the dignity of the human person.

    Today, in fact, as a consequence of the possibilities which the state has for effectively preventing crime, by rendering one who has committed an offense incapable of doing harm – without definitely taking away from him the possibility of redeeming himself – the cases in which the execution of the offender is an absolute necessity “are very rare, if not practically non-existent.”

    This is what passes in our current society for journalism.

  5. JonPatrick says:

    I read the WaPo article this morning – could have been worse, they forgot the MSM rule that you have to bring up the sex abuse crisis in every article about the CC even if irrelevant to the topic at hand. Being used to the Boston Globe, reading the WaPo almost seems conservative by comparison :)

  6. frjim4321 says:

    This is probably just the beginning of coverage on this topic in the secular media. I would assume as we get closer to the imposition there will be much more.

    We had a parish meeting last night and reviewed LA and the RT. The parishioners were pretty savvy and put together that the basic difference between LA and its predecessor CP was who has the power, and what their personal preferences are. One instruction cancels out the previous, and so on and so on ad infinitium.

    With respect to the Post article, as usual the secular media gets a lot wrong with respect to things Catholic. The basic thrust of the article seemed pretty much on target.

    [Remember: If you don't like something about the new, corrected translation, you can simply opt for Latin.]

  7. Phil_NL says:

    By the way, Adam Zamyoski’s book on the Congress of Vienna ( * ) contains the word ineffable on page x.

    Yes, that’s the introduction, before he even begins with numbering his main text. And that for an internationally bestselling author – I guess all those people who bought his books are really angry at not being able to understand a word of what he has written….

    *: http://www.amazon.com/Rites-Peace-Napoleon-Congress-Vienna/dp/B003A02Y7E/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1319826999&sr=8-7

  8. SimonDodd says:

    The claim that the Holy Father “declin[ed] this month to pray with Hindus, Jews and others at an interreligious event” is so incredibly fraught that even the National Dissenting Reporter castigated it.

  9. Tradster says:

    “Pope Benedict XVI has stressed the sole truth of Catholicism over other faiths, even declining this month to pray with Hindus, Jews and others at an interreligious event.”

    Notice they conveniently “forgot” to mention who it was that convened that interreligious event at Assisi in the first place, so as to make it read as if the Pope snubbed an event to which he was invited. Typical biased liberal reporting.

  10. TomG says:

    >The parishioners were pretty savvy and put together that the basic difference between LA and> its predecessor CP was who has the power, and what their personal preferences are.

    You really think so, “frjim4321″? For my part, whenever anyone uses the word “power” except in connection with the Persons of the Holy Trinity, I reach to loosen the safety catch on my revolver.

    Seriously, though, I know Frs. Thompson, Fox and Reichsteg, who occasionally comment on this blog. They give their real names. Who are you? [As if your "handle" was so very forthright. I decide who comments here and no one else. I have reason to believe he is a priest in good standing.]

  11. “The parishioners were pretty savvy and put together that the basic difference between LA and its predecessor CP was who has the power, . . . “

    I should think a savvy pastor could have pointed out the principal difference–that LA is based on what the Church learned from 30 years of experience with the results of CP. In particular that, however appropriate and well-intentioned CP may have seemed in 1970, by 2002 it was clear that this first attempt at a translation modus operandi had missed the mark, not having succeeded in producing a translation that preserved continuity in English with tradition in the liturgy in Latin. An so LA, while surely still falling short of ultimate perfection, is the Church’s current attempt–exercised with the “power” of the Vicar of Christ, to be sure—at the necessary course correction. What about this seems too hard for an informed pastoral type to understand? As Father Z sometimes says, it’s not rocket science. Just another historical example of “If at first you don’t succeed, try again!” (Perhaps also good advice for the conduct of parish meetings.)

  12. TomG says:

    And … closer to the IMPOSITION? Give me a break!

  13. TomG says:

    Mr. Edwards, I should have waited a few minutes. Splendid, as always.

  14. contrarian says:

    “Recent popes have emphasized orthodoxy and hierarchy…”

    I remember the hip and groovy days of Pius X. Man, *those* were some good times. We were so young. So free! Now, with the current squares, it’s all rules rules rules!

  15. albinus1 says:

    Pope Benedict XVI has stressed the sole truth of Catholicism over other faiths

    It always amazes (and amuses) me how shocked (shocked!) some people are when the answer to “Is the pope Catholic?” turns out to be, “Yes”.

  16. Ttony says:

    ‘English-speaking Catholics are bracing for the biggest changes to their Mass since the 1960s”’

    No. ‘American English-speaking Catholics’. English is spoken in other parts of the world in which the new translation has been in use for some weeks.

    Isn’t the Washington Post supposed to understand that the US isn’t the whole world?

  17. amenamen says:

    Some?

    ” …less-literal translations that some saw as more poetic and contemporary …”

    Funny how the Washington Post found “some” who see the present translation as “more poetic” than the new translation. I wonder what passages they could have in mind. More poetic? Even the strongest objections to the new translation rarely claimed that the 1973 translation was particularly “poetic.” Simplified, and easier to read, maybe, but not poetic.
    As for “contemporary” … contemporary with what?

  18. wmeyer says:

    amenamen:

    Yeah, and then there’s the NAB, which makes use of some truly ineffable phrasings. On the fairly common occasions when I find the NAB leaves me puzzled, I turn to any of four or five other versions, all of which are substantially better in conveying meaning.

  19. RichardT says:

    “the less conversational the Mass, the more they will alienate people”

    As opposed to the crowded Churches under the outgoing translation?

  20. robtbrown says:

    frjim4321 says:
    We had a parish meeting last night and reviewed LA and the RT. The parishioners were pretty savvy and put together that the basic difference between LA and its predecessor CP was who has the power, and what their personal preferences are. One instruction cancels out the previous, and so on and so on ad infinitium.

    By “personal preference”, are you referring to something subjective, e.g., whether to have Jack, Provolone or Cheddar cheese on a hamburger? Or are you referring to something objective, whether it’s better to eat cotton candy or baked cod as a main course.

  21. Fr Martin Fox says:

    It’s so funny.

    First, the article looks to me as though a lot of it was fed to the author. Not word-for-word, but at lot of the emphases and sources. Not a great exercise in creativity on the author’s part.

    It reminds me of the third volume of C.S. Lewis’s Space Trilogy, That Hideous Strength, where Lewis describes one of the baddies preparing a series of articles, before they make something happen, to plant in the newspapers to shape public opinion. And it’s hilarious how Lewis lampoons the predictable tropes and moralistic tones of such things. And you can see it here: “traditionalists worry”–oh, there, there, poor things!

    Finally, while I don’t doubt there are folks having the vapors over this, in my parishes I’ve seen a huge shift. When I was first talking about this, over a year ago, we did have some alarmist reactions; members of pastoral council predicted folks would leave the parish! I thought, well we better do some spade work. And we set some education in motion.

    Meanwhile, I talked to the retired priest in the parish–who isn’t terribly in favor of the change; he shrugged and said, “it’s not that big a deal. The people’s parts don’t change that much. It won’t be a big deal.”

    As things draw near, he’s looking more and more right. We’ll see how it goes from here.

  22. Joe in Canada says:

    I had the same thought as Fr Martin Fox. No one who actually read the new translation, even with differences pointed out in advance, could have written “The line that said Jesus died on the cross “for you and for all so that sins may be forgiven” will change to “for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.” “

  23. couissent says:

    This is ridiculous! We have had the new translation in England for nearly two months now, with barely a murmur of opposition, despite the best (or rather worst) efforts of the wretched Tablet to stir things up. On the contrary, more and more people are coming to appreciate the beauty and dignity of what was always there but obscured by the modernist prose of the 1970s translation. In six months’ time people will be wondering what all the fuss was about, while the richness of the new translation will stimulate renewed interest in the theology of the Mass. The only backlash will be from the increasing number of Catholics who begin to realise how far they have been denied their sacred and beautiful heritage.

  24. Charles E Flynn says:

    Do we know whether the chalice was initially precious, or became precious only after Jesus used it at the Last Supper?

  25. Fr-Bill says:

    I participated in a Rosary in a Catholic Church a couple of weeks ago. I noticed that the modern version of the Gloria Patri was mixed with the older version by the people. After a few mysteries the modern version could not be heard. Likewise I suspect that even though YOUR will be on the printed page, that THY will by a normal spoken response as in “and with THY spirit.”

  26. Mitchell NY says:

    The more the new translation battles go on the more I am convinced that the vernacular was haphazardly introduced and with it a battleground. No one could argue about the Latin, it was accepted and people used various translations from different publishers. Mandate the Consecration in Latin and some other elements as Vat II demanded retention of Latin, especially for the Ordinary, and watch how fast the supporters of a divisive battle over vernacular translations drop their agenda and move on to fighting Latin. Maybe the Council was very wise to allow for only a limited use for readings and such. Might they have foreseen the endless battles to be fought within the Church, turning one against the other? We may yet learn that the retention of Latin was the wisest thing they included in the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy. Wouldn’t that realization be a revelation to many !

  27. Legisperitus says:

    Mr. Flynn: Not to lead the thread down a rabbit hole, but most likely there were chalices of precious metal in the Cenacle that would have been used for the Passover. The building belonged to the royal family of David.

  28. abasham says:

    Ah, Fr. Creedon, our new pastor…. Interesting man.

  29. Joan A. says:

    Much ado about – not ‘nothing’ certainly, but a little. Some people simply live to protest and argue against the Church. There is no substantial (or even consubstantial) problem here.

    This is still our same Mass with the same purpose and sacrament and grace and meaning. I haven’t counted, but the words that are changed or added look like they constitute less than 10 percent of the entire liturgy.

    I’m just happy ‘dewfall’ escaped the threshing machine and made it into the 2nd Eucharistic Prayer. Ah, that gives me such an ineffable feeling!

  30. Nicole says:

    Am I getting something wrong by concluding that Bishop Trautman is calling either himself or his predecessor to blame for his subjects not knowing the concepts “consubstantial” or “born ineffably of the inviolate Virgin”? I mean…if his subjects don’t know or believe these concepts…is it possible that it is because practically no one is teaching them in the USA?

  31. michelelyl says:

    With all respect intended- why is this even an issue? In most Catholic parishes, it’s just the way it is. We use new terms- new concepts- it is the way it is.
    This is not an issue in my NO parish- and I’m presenting another session on the changes (that the Bishop (VASA) started as a bulletin article over a year ago!!
    Catholics will pray the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist as we are instructed.

  32. Kerry says:

    “…less independence and diversity” Always amusing to read the press criticizing what they do not believe, because it lacks something they worship. Are we to imagine them saying, “Wow!! Look at the independence and diversity. I now believe in the Real Presence, and the Magisterium, and the Immaculate Conception, and….”

    P.S. TomG, the “safety catch on your revolver” is more properly called the index finger.

  33. Charles E Flynn says:

    @Legisperitus,

    Thank you.

    I wonder who is going to break the news to Mr. Speilberg.

  34. Supertradmum says:

    Every single priest and lay person I have met in Great Britain love the changes. NO one has complained. If a liberal priest or bishop have complaints which are their own and not of the laity, they should keep them to themselves, otherwise they are engaging in liberal anti-intellectualism and anti-liturgical language biases.

    I learned the term “transubstantiation” and “consubstantial” in First Holy Communion classes and the nuns did a great job breaking down the words and explaining the meanings. Children love language and new words, and so do most adults. Complaints like the above indicate a closed mind-set to the beauty of Christ and His relationship to His Father and the Holy Spirit. What is the problem?

  35. albinus1 says:

    I participated in a Rosary in a Catholic Church a couple of weeks ago. I noticed that the modern version of the Gloria Patri was mixed with the older version by the people. After a few mysteries the modern version could not be heard.

    I’m sorry — to what “modern version” of the Gloria Patri are you referring? I’ve only ever heard one version of the prayer. Or are you referring to the fact that some people say “Holy Ghost” and others say “Holy Spirit”? Otherwise, I’ve never heard any version other than the standard one. Is there another version that I’m not aware of? (I’ve never thought of the difference in a single word as constituting a different “version”.)

    Likewise I suspect that even though YOUR will be on the printed page, that THY will by a normal spoken responses in “and with THY spirit.”

    I’m not so sure. I think that the reason so many people say, “Thy will be done” in the Our Father, and use other archaic forms in other prayers, is that they learned them that way when they were children and, over many years, have gotten used to saying them that way by rote. A congregation reciting the Our Father is almost on automatic pilot. But it’s been 40 years since we’ve said “And with thy spirit”. I think most people are going to have to stop and think about what they are going to say — and at first they’ll just read it off the response cards that many parishes are providing, and so the form that they will internalize is the one written on the cards.

  36. albinus1 says:

    PS –

    The building belonged to the royal family of David.

    What is the evidence for this and how do we know?

  37. GregH says:

    “More important things like drone bombings?” That is HILARIOUS!!!! Good ol’ Fr Creedon…Ireland’s finest! How different he is than Fr Cornelius O’Brien!

  38. Charles E Flynn says:

    By searching at Google for:

    Cenacle royal family David

    we find this claim in
    How Christ said the first mass, or, The Lord’s last supper, page 231, published in 1908:

    The Cenacle belonged to David’s family.

    There appear to be no footnotes, but the ads for other books at the end are interesting.

  39. amenamen says:

    Liturgy?

    There are other things more important to focus on.

    Drones. Focus on drones.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=wp0nIyShw50

  40. bookworm says:

    Due to time constraints today I attended Mass at a parish I don’t normally go to. It was not the kind of parish Fr. Z or most of his readers would care for, either architecturally, in liturgy style, or in their choice of music. They appear to be a more “liberal” kind of parish. Yet, they already have next year’s worship books/missals out, they have pew cards with relevant parts of the new translation highlighted, and they recited the new/old/corrected version of the Creed today (“I believe” instead of “We believe”). Seems like they are farther ahead of the curve on preparing people for the change than are some more conservative/traditional parishes I’ve been to!