From a reader:
What is and is not currently allowed to be used at Mass? What will and won’t be allowed after November? What falls into the “bad but nothing to be done about it” category and what can be taken to the bishop or beyond if it occurs?
Most of our liturgy refers to God and Christ as male, but there are frequent hymns that use inclusive language for the people in general, even when quoting scripture (yesterday we had “I am the Bread of Life, you who come to me shall not hunger, you who believe in me shall not thirst; no one can come to me, unless the Father beckons”; the Gloria is often said as “Glory to God in the Highest, and peace to God’s people on earth” with language about God being the King remaining — that sort of “soft” inclusiveness, which I believe is an attempt to appease all sides).
First, what is permitted to be used at Mass is what is published in the official books to be used at Mass, that is the Latin edition of the Missale Romanum and/or an approved translation of the Ordinary Form Missale Romanum and its Lectionarium. Approved books with chants for the Mass can be used, for example, the Graduale Romanum.
In these approved liturgical books you say or sing what is in black print. Easy.
Second, this may sound a little hard or unrealistic, but those “hymns” to which you refer are not really part of the official liturgical texts of Mass. See my comment above, about the Graduale Romanum.
If there is some problem with the text of a hymn, just get rid of the hymn. Don’t sing it in church.
Just say “NO” to bad hymns.
If people don’t like some aspect of the new, corrected translation we will begin to use in November, then it is always possible to opt for Latin. Latin eliminates the problems of a) bad theology, b) illicit texts, c) inadequate translations, b) excluding anyone of a different sex or species or astrological sign.
The basic solution to all of this is summed up in