Bp. Loverde (D. Arlington) on the corrected translation

In The Catholic Herald of the Diocese of Arlington, His Excellency Most Rev. Paul Loverde has a piece about the new, corrected translation of the Roman Missal.  My emphases and comments:

The new translation — A call to deeper prayer

Some of you may recall, as I do, learning certain tenets of our faith from the Baltimore Catechism. The concise, memorable question-and-answer format assisted me as a boy in learning theological truths upon which I still reflect today[A catechetical approach to which we must return.] In light of the announcement from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) that, after years of work, the new translation of the Roman Missal will be implemented in Advent 2011, the Catechism question “What is Prayer?” particularly resounds with me. The response, “Prayer is the lifting up of our minds and hearts to God,” highlights the opportunity for spiritual growth that the new translation will afford each of us (Baltimore Catechism, no. 1099).

[…] Yes, this translation means more than merely learning new responses to say during Mass, although the words have a particular purpose and are important. It is, ultimately, a call to strengthen our prayer to God during the liturgy and to more actively and authentically participate: to truly “lift our minds and hearts to God.”

It is my prayer that each of us will take time to reflect upon the changes being made and the true meaning of the words that the priest and the congregation pray at Mass. Consider, for example, the occasions in the Mass when the celebrant says, “The Lord be with you.” Instead of, “And also with you,” under the new translation the congregation will reply, “And with your spirit.” Far from being a reduction in meaning, this response, which is more true to the official Latin text from which all translations have been made, increases our understanding that we are asking the Lord to dwell in the souls of those gathered for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. In addition, since the priest (or deacon before the proclamation of the Gospel) greets the faithful with the words, “The Lord be with you,” the response, “And with your spirit” serves to mark those moments of truly priestly (or diaconal) ministry, that is, when the priest (or deacon) is about to do what he is ordained to do. These moments include: presiding over the entire prayer of the community at the beginning of the Mass; proclaiming God’s holy Word in His Gospel; offering the Eucharistic Prayer, which begins with the Preface; and imparting the final blessing. Our new response indicates that the priest (or deacon) is not acting on his own but only in the power of Christ and the Holy Spirit.


[This is nice…] Our participation in the liturgy is an essential part of our worship. Discussing the Mass, Pope Pius X taught that “the faithful assemble for no other object than that of acquiring this spirit from its foremost and indispensable font, which is the active participation in the most holy mysteries and in the public and solemn prayer of the Church” (Pope Pius X, Tra le Sollecitudini, 22 November 1903).  [Active participation is, first and foremost, about active receptivity.  The “acquiring”.  This lead to outward expression in a second step.  Receptivity has logical priority, though receptivity and outward expression can be chronologically simultaneous.] This liturgical theme was further developed by the Servant of God, Pope Paul VI during the Second Vatican Council when he wrote that the “Church consists in the full active participation of all God’s holy people in these liturgical celebrations, especially in the same eucharist, in a single prayer, at one altar, at which there presides the bishop surrounded by his college of priests and by his ministers” (Pope Paul VI, Sacrosanctum Concilium, 1963, no. 41). The new translation provides us with the opportunity, once again, to participate in the Mass in a deeper way. [Certainly deeper than we have seen in most places for the last few decades.]


During this time of fruitful transition, I ask you to dedicate yourself to active participation in the celebration of the Mass. As this new translation so beautifully emphasizes, Our Lord Jesus Christ died so that we may have life, a mystery which we celebrate at each and every Liturgy. He sacrificed Himself for us; let our response be one of prayerful participation in the celebration of the Eucharist, which He instituted in His Church.

WDTPRS kudos to Bp. Loverde.

We see from some corners these days an effort to poison the reception of the new, corrected translation.

It is good to see bishops reaching out past these naysayers in an effort to make the transition more appealing by painting it as an opportunity.

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  1. TJerome says:

    a very, very nice statement. I suspect with proper introduction by priests and pastors, this will go well.

  2. irishgirl says:

    Kudos indeed to His Excellency from Arlington!

  3. Rellis says:

    Bp. Loverde is excellent. Arlington has a very high concentration of TLMs per Catholic. I think there’s one for every 30,000 Catholics or so. There’s one in about every fourteen parishes.

    The full list is on the Arlington Diocese webpage. There is also a good lay Yahoo group called “TLM Arlington.”

    If that doesn’t sound great, run the numbers in your own diocese. Arlington is great, and it has been in large part due to the fact that Loverde has been tolerant. This despite the fact the TLM is probably not his cup of tea.

    The priests are also excellent.

    It doesn’t surprise me at all that he’s doing a positive and faithful implementation of the correct translation of the ordinary form.

    He both PRAYS well and TELLS it like it really is. Positively.

  4. JulieC says:

    Applause! I’m so happy to see a bishop explaining the concept of active participation, especially on this 52nd anniversary of Pope Pius XII’s Requiem Mass at St. Peter’s. ‘Papa Angelicus’ was an ardent advocate of active participation.

    If the Pope’s instructions in De Musica Sacra (#25 and 31) mandating in 1958 that the faithful be taught in stages to recite audibly all the responses at the High Mass and Low Mass had only been followed would there have been such a demand for the radical liturgical reforms to come a few years later? I often wonder about that.

    At any rate, Pope Pius XII was most emphatic that the congregation not be silent at Mass:

    “A congregation that is devoutly present at the sacrifice, in which our Savior together with His children redeemed with His sacred blood sings the nuptial hymn of His immense love, cannot keep silent, for ‘song befits the lover’ and, as the ancient saying has it, ‘he who sings well prays twice.’

    Thus the Church militant, faithful as well as clergy, join in the hymns of the Church triumphant and with the choirs of angels, and, all together, sing a wondrous and eternal hymn of praise to the most Holy Trinity in keeping with the words of the preface, “with whom our voices, too, thou wouldst bid to be admitted.” (Mediator Dei, 192)

    BTW, a short video of Pope Pius XII’s extraordinary funeral a half century ago today is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H2iLka5mZqk&feature=player_embedded

  5. beez says:

    That’s my ordinary! :)

  6. stgemma_0411 says:

    It’s nice to see a return to more foundational documents, rather than every bishop quoting from the Documents of Vatican II. That really shows the whole purpose of what Pope Benedict is trying to do, namely, a return to continuity with the past and not having the Novus Ordo be a means of division within the Church.

  7. Chris Garton-Zavesky says:

    It should be noted, in spite of the quotes of JulieC, that this was the same Holy Father that recognized that the faithful could, and even should, participate at various levels — and that the forced smiles and forced singing so common nowadays are to be avoided.

  8. SemiSpook says:

    Bishop Loverde is a decent shepherd, as the Arlington Diocese is more orthodox in the greater DC Metro area (even in voting tendencies deem otherwise).

  9. kiwitrad says:

    Here in NZ the changes are being brought in at Advent this year. We have been given a booklet telling us what the changes are but there has been no mention of them from the pulpit, no teaching on WHY they are happening. The people who have mentioned it to me are really irritated by the changes: “change for change sake” and “It’s a pity the old men in the Vatican have nothing better to do” are common attitudes. When I try to explain it’s closer to the Latin I’m asked “Why?” If I explain it’s to deepen our understanding of what the Mass is about I’m told they KNOW what it’s about. We may be the first country in the world to introduce these changes in but I can see it’s going to be a disaster and I’m sad to say our Bishops are to blame.

  10. robtbrown says:

    IMHO, the changes themselves will not cause much of a commotion. Moving from “And also with you” to “And with your spirit” is not that big a deal.

    The resistance will come because it is perceived, as Kiwitrad notes above, as a move by the Apostolic See to exercise its authority (cf. Vat II) over the liturgy–the beginning of the re-Romanization of the Church.

  11. rocbin says:

    robtbrown: Am I wrong in thinking that the Reromanisation of the Church is far better than the Anglicanisation of the Church, which, in my opinion, is what is happening now?

  12. robtbrown says:


    For you answer I suggest you read John XXIII’s Veterum Sapientia


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