England and Wales will use new translation in September, not December

The UK’s best Catholic weekly, The Catholic Herald, has a story stating that…

New Mass translation to be used in parishes from September

By Mark Greaves

The new English translation of the Order of Mass will be used in parishes in England and Wales from September, it was announced today. [I wonder if that will be the case elsewhere.  The text has been finalized, so there is hardly any reason not to allow implementation of the new translation.  This is the internet age, a time when we can print out texts at every parish.]

The bishops’ conference said it would be introduced into parishes three months before the new Missal is published in Advent and would thus provide an opportunity for “in-depth catechesis on the Eucharist and renewed devotion in the manner of its celebration”. [Doesn’t that imply that the intense catechesis should start before September?]

The bishops also announced the creation of a website and a DVD to prepare the faithful for the transition.

They confirmed that the new Roman Missal was complete and that the Holy See had given its recognitio.

Bishop Arthur Roche of Leeds, chairman of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL), which drafted the new text, said it was “a tremendous opportunity for the Church in England and Wales to learn about our faith and the Mass”. [Yes, so long as priests make the effort.]

The bishop said: “The new translation is a great gift to the Church. The Mass is at the heart of what the Church is, it is where we deepen our faith in Christ and are nourished by him so that we can glorify the Lord by our lives.

“In the new translation we find a text that is more faithful to the Latin text and therefore a text which is richer in its theological content and allusions to the scriptures but also a translation which, I believe, will move people’s hearts and minds in prayer.”  [What, pray tell, is wrong with that?   The new translation is not perfect.  No one has claimed that it is.  ANY translation would still require explanation (=catechesis).  But, for the love of God, let’s jettison the lame-duck translation disaster as soon as possible and get on with it.]

The bishop said he hoped people would use resources provided by the bishops’ conference to prepare for the new translation.

He cited a DVD produced by ICEL, called Become One Body One Spirit in Christ, which has already been sent out to parishes. It features six hours of footage of experts talking about various aspects of the Mass. Bishop Roche said it would help people “uncover the riches that the Eucharist offers us”.

We truly need intense catechesis.

But we need that catechesis because, frankly, we need catechesis, not just because we are getting a new translation.


I learned from Fr. Finigan (who was kind enough to link back here) that the Missal in England will be… well.. here… let him say it:

The CTS website shows A first glimpse of the new Roman Missal with the above photo of a dummy version without any printing or gold blocking on the cover. This paragraph warmed my heart:

Beauty and Practicality
CTS is working with highly-skilled printers and binders in Italy to ensure a high quality of craftsmanship in the finished volume. The choice of paper, binding, marker ribbons and leather page tabs has been made to ensure ease of use and durability over many years.

For the interior, colour illustrations have been sourced from medieval illustrated manuscripts, and decorative elements from skilled contemporary artists and from volumes in the British Library.

Here is the photo:

CTS Roman Missal

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Pius says:

    But the big question is: will the printed altar Missals be ready by September? I spoke to a publisher recently who told me they might not be ready until October.

  2. TJerome says:

    Great news! Catechesis is necessary, however, since people are generally more receptive to something when they know the rationale.

  3. Andrew says:

    This is utterly ineffable!

  4. PghCath says:

    First the Ordinariate, now this. The Catholics of the UK are on a roll this month!

  5. traditionalorganist says:

    I know that, still, millions of Catholics are unaware that any change will be taking place. I haven’t heard anything in Mass, anywhere that I’ve been, regarding the new translation. That leaves me reserved in my optimism about how well it will be implemented. I hope the preparation and catechesis picks up soon!

  6. Henry Edwards says:

    But we need that catechesis because, frankly, we need catechesis, not just because we are getting a new translation.

    Certainly, liturgical catechesis is needed, because most Catholics have received none in recent decades, so many reasonably educated Catholics today may have less knowledge of the Mass than many comparatively uneducated ones did a half-century ago.

    Certainly, some preparation by priests will be needed. But, from the view of a lay Catholic in the pews—and one with some experience in preparing “worship aids”—I suspect the new translation could be used within a week or so without difficulty in a parish where a priest is enthusiastic about it.

  7. Christopher Gainey says:

    Does anyone know whether Canadians can expect to be introduced to the new translation at the same time? It is never mentioned to my knowledge.

  8. Joe in Canada says:

    At least one edition has been printed; I’ve seen it. Very handsome.
    I noticed it leaves out the instruction to bow during the Creed at the “et homo factus est”, which instruction is currently in the Canadian Missal. The person who showed it to me said that the presumption was that everyone would know what to do, and it is in the GIRM.

  9. Ed the Roman says:

    As I’ve been mentioning in a few places, if the new translation is not used until Advent, the second time the new Gloria is heard will be Christmas.

  10. Christopher, I was about to ask the same question. I suspect our beloved Canadian bishops are hoping to wait it out and count on no one complaining… (me, I’m hoping a priest in my area is going to start an weekly EF mass as he seems to be rumbling about).

  11. fenetre says:

    Here’s from the CCCB website http://www.cccb.ca/site/eng/coming-up
    The Revised Roman Missal
    The National Liturgy Office of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) is currently working on the revised Roman Missal. It is expected to be implemented in Fall 2011.

  12. Tim Ferguson says:

    A friend and I were discussing the best way to ensure that recalcitrant priests not hang onto the old “sacramentaries” and continue using the old texts after the new one has been implemented. My friend was of the mindset that the bishop could take care of this when he visited the parish for confirmation, taking copies of the old texts out of the sacristy when he left. Not a bad idea, but I believe that would leave hidden copies cubbyholed away hither and yon.

    My solution, inspired by the “gun buy-back” program in many cities: announce to the pastors that this year – and this year only, every pastor who turns in a copy of the former text will be given one copy of the current missal. For every additional old sacramentary that’s turned in, that pastor will have $500 taken off the parish’s annual assessment for the diocesan tax. That will ensure that pastors will scour the parish – the convent chapel, the school library, the choir loft – and might even be willing to raid the sacristies of the neighboring parishes, to turn in books.

    The copies in the best shape will be preserved in the diocesan archives and historical museum, available for future study. The remainder will be burned and the ashes distributed to the parishes in time for next Ash Wednesday.

  13. fenetre says:

    Oh … but don’t hold your breath … read back to an older announcement back in September of last year. CCCB maintained that implementation will only go forward when the French issue is fully resolved. To be honest, I expect a delay.

  14. Sixupman says:

    How did we ever manage, what with full churches and all that, before Vatican II:?

    We were fully educated, because from infants school we were taught The Faith!

  15. Laurinda1230 says:

    We have the liturgy and music printed out for us each week (on site so not too expensive, I hope) and for the last few months Father has had information about the new translations printed on them so parishioners will get used to the idea. He has two columns, the current and the new with bolded differences, which I think has been really useful. I look forward to his catechesis this Fall!

  16. franruizg says:

    In Argentina the translation in use since last year is the opposite of the english one. It is very colloquial and informal even in the consecration words. This is the second battle (the other has been communion in the hand) the majority of argentine bishops win in last 15 years.
    The only diocese that subsists without this two abuses is San Luis diocese in the Province of San Luis, Argentina. His actual bishop and the future bishop are very good. The old bishop of San Luis is Mons. Laise and lives in Italy and has ordained priests in the Extraordinary Form for the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate. So the line is continuing thank God. But all the rest of the country is governed by the dictatorship of the Episcopal Conference of Bishops.

  17. Stephen Matthew says:

    Our parish Sunday bulletin has been carrying a small bit on the New Roman Missal for a couple months now, I think maybe it started at the one year out mark. It runs a paragraph or two a week. I think it is some sort of syndicated piece, not prepared locally, because there was a mix up and the one that was supposed to come out the day after Christmass was printed in the week before, which was rather funny since it spoke of yesterday being Christmas day and the return of the Gloria, etc. I have not been very impressed yet, because so far it is just giving basic background on fundamentals of what a missall and sacramentary are, things like that, nothing yet on the nuts and bolts of what is changing.
    There was a vexing bit on how when gathered together at mass we pray as a community under the term “we” rather than “I” which seemed contrary since in fact we are changing from saying “we” to “I” in part of the new translation.

    Anyone have any idea where this is coming from? It seems like something put out by maybe the USCCB or maybe one of the Catholic publishing houses or news services or maybe even the ICEL people. Anyone know? I could provide on the texts if that helps.

  18. Glaswegian says:

    Please note that England and Wales is not ‘the UK’. Scotland has its own Bishops’ Conference (as does All Ireland), and we wait with interest to see when the new translation will be implemented here – or indeed if the faithful might ever be told a new translation is on its way.

    Some of us had hoped we might get a taste of the Ordinary at the Papal Mass in Glasgow’s Bellahouston Park, but it came only in the Macmillan musical settings.

  19. Kathy C says:

    Does anyone know where we can get copies of the new missal? My pastor asked me to research alterntives to the OCP misallettes (I’ve got the GREATEST pastor!) He was thinking about asking people to just buy their own missal and be done with it. However, I can’t even find out who will be publishing them. Any help out there?

  20. Kathy C says:

    Oops. That’s the US version, not British. Still, any info?

  21. jarthurcrank says:

    “A friend and I were discussing the best way to ensure that recalcitrant priests not hang onto the old “sacramentaries” and continue using the old texts after the new one has been implemented. My friend was of the mindset that the bishop could take care of this when he visited the parish for confirmation, taking copies of the old texts out of the sacristy when he left. Not a bad idea, but I believe that would leave hidden copies cubbyholed away hither and yon.”

    Groups of organized lay Catholics should take a page from the playbook of the old Catholic Interracial Council to ensure that the new translations are being used, and that the old translations are being either chucked in the wastebasket or put in the library so that future generations can learn from our past mistakes and shake their heads saying “What were they thinking?

    Back in the 1940s-1950s in the Washington Archdiocese, then-Archbishop O’Boyle directed that all of the parishes be integrated. A number of parishes, however, were disobedient to O’Boyle’s order and continued their past practice of either forcing blacks to sit in the back pews or refusing admission to mass at all. Coming to the rescue was the Catholic Interracial Council, whose lay volunteers visited incognito, I believe, virtually every parish in the Archdiocese on multiple occasions, with a particular focus on Southern Maryland. At the conclusion, they presented the results of their findings to the Archdiocese – – and I think to the public at large. Most of the recalcitrants soon wised up and got with the program.

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