About that survey by The Tablet… does anything strike you as a little queer?

I wrote HERE about The Tablet (aka The Bitter Pill aka RU-486 ) and their abortive attempts to get a survey right concerning acceptance of the new, corrected ICEL translation.

It has been a tough few days for RU-486, I’m afraid.  They posted the wrong texts in their poll.  They then had technical problems which required them to zero the results.  They changed – corrected – the texts.  It’s all a huge hassle, I’m sure.

One of the survey questions I really enjoy, however, is this one.  Read it carefully and then ask yourself if there isn’t something odd about it.

See it?  Yes?  No?  Yes?

The Latin text is NOT a translation.  Ordinary Form, Extraordinary Form – whatever – are Latin to begin with.

This survey thing is hard!

Follow my link, above, to take their survey… in whatever form it has taken today.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. revs96 says:

    The survey was too hard to understand. I want to go back to the old translation of the survey.

    Fr. Z's Gold Star Award

  2. M. K. says:

    I indicated “new version” on the translation question – given a choice, I actually prefer to attend the EF, but I wondered whether The Tablet included the EF and the Latin OF (which both seem out of place, given the precise topic of the survey) to try to dilute support for the new translation on that question, insofar as people who prefer the EF and the Latin OF could be thought to be more likely to prefer the new translation over the old one. By setting up the question as they do, they can more easily rig the outcome so that they can say, “Look! More people prefer the old translation!” – even if people who voted for the EF and the Latin OF on that question would take the new translation over the old.

    I also notice that they ask for email addresses this time around, which I don’t remember them doing in the earlier version of the survey.

  3. Rich says:

    I love that question about whether one agrees with the statement: “Just as admirers of the Tridentine Rite have been allowed to continue using the pre-Conciliar liturgy, I think people who favour the old English-language translation of the Mass should be allowed to celebrate it in that version who are attached to it.” What sort of division would we be talking about then? Rite, form, sub-form?

  4. vetusta ecclesia says:

    The question about translations is a nonsense – the Latin texts are not translations!

  5. tzard says:

    Wow, the poll uses the word “obsequious” – a much more obscure word than even “consubstantial”. I don’t remember it from the first poll version.

  6. disco says:

    @Rich. If you search Calvin Goodwin on YouTube you’ll find a talk he gave at the FSSP parish in Sarasota Fl about the growth of popularity of the traditional mass. He recalls a time when the old latin mass could only be found on the third Sundays of months that don’t have the letter R in them in a basement hospital chapel at 5PM. I say let the old translation folks have that and see if it catches on. Fr Goodwin is more charitable, admitting he would not wish that fate upon anyone.

  7. pmullane says:

    The whole fiasco of this survey just goes to show the fundemental lack of knowledge and understanding of the pill’s staff when it comes to the holy Mass. Ironic that these are the ones who bow down before the almighty ‘trained liturgist’. I suppose it’s a demonstration of ‘sin makes you stupid’.

  8. Phil Steinacker says:

    What I noticed both times I voted (yes, I voted twice…when I vote I do as liberals do – I vote early and often!) is that the Tablet provides no way for visitors to see results – even after voting ourselves.

    As a former lefty with many years of interior and exterior observation to validate my perspective, I know for a fact that the Left obfuscates and hides truth as much as possible, and when that fails it lies without restraint. To be on the Left is to be a liar, unwitting or not, in the same way Satan is a liar, and just like the evil one’s lies those of the Left have more than just a kernel of truth to them.

    Their continuing success in persuading most of what was once known as Christendom (including so many Catholics) to embrace their falsehoods in ever-increasing numbers is testament to the efficacy of their tactics.

    The Tablet is part and parcel to this web of lies, and their failure to illustrate the current vote tally is but a lesser symptom of the disease that rots from within. No surprise here.

    Or do they simply fear Father Z’s ability to mobilize his great vote-generation machine to blow them away? :-)

    I say both.

  9. jbosco88 says:

    Should they be twisted enough to change the survey twice, no good will come of the results. Either:

    1) The survey is positive about the “new” translation, but wrong because “traditionalists” voted
    2) The “new” translation is a-okay, but not as many people attend the so-called Tridentine Mass as would be made out, so is Summorum Pontificum really necessary?
    3) They lie – ICEL should have consulted the people.

    In any scenario, the Catholics lose, the dissidents win. T’will ever be so.

  10. r.j.sciurus says:


  11. The Cobbler says:

    I don’t know if this is an old-survey/new-survey thing, but does anyone else find it telling that they put “consubstantial” under the heading “style” rather than “theology”? Or, for that matter, “and with your spirit”? Or, for that matter, that they have such a heading at all, given that even if there were a merely stylistic change in the translation it would be undertaken at least indirectly with theological motive (e.g. if the entire thing were put into proper meter to be poetically stylistic, it would be done because poetical style was considered worthy of the Mass — a theological reason)?

    As to the Latin being counted among translations, perhaps they’re thinking of the fact that the EF was adapted from Greek/Aramaic? Perhaps we should turn back to those roots to figure out what our prayers should say! (*snerk* Yes, I’m joking — but wouldn’t you love to see their faces when they find out what the Greek really says?)

    On another point: “I suppose it’s a demonstration of ‘sin makes you stupid’.” If you count “makes you stupid” as synonymous, if colloquial, with “enslaves the will and darkens the intellect”, you can point out that this is actually Church teaching!

  12. MarnieBarcelona says:

    I answered “the new translation” for the reason Fr. Z stated. Just thinking, why don’t we throw the libesaurs (from the Spanish progresaurios) for a loop and use “homoousios ” instead of consubstantial.

  13. akp1 says:

    I was about to click EF – but then thought – maybe they weed out anyone who does so – and as said already, the Latin isn’t a translation – so ‘new translation’ it is!

  14. akp1 says:

    It’s getting a bit ridiculous – this is the fourth time I’ve done this questionnaire! Seems like the EU – keep voting until you give us the answer we want to hear!

  15. uptoncp says:

    The bulk of the Missal is Scripture – translated into Latin. The Gloria and Creed were originally Greek; my scholarly sources are no more recent than Fortescue, The Mass, but there’s at least a possibility that the Canon itself is from a Greek original.

    But even so, that makes it a compendium of translations, not a translation.

  16. BobP says:

    What good is a survey unless you can submit multiple times? :)

  17. Speravi says:

    As I mentioned in my comment on this point in the other post, the Roman Rite liturgy is a liturgy. It is not a mere anthology of texts. And as a liturgy, it reached maturity in the language of the Romans. Therefore, it does not really seem very meaningful to talk about a pre-Latin Roman Rite. Ergo, Latin is not a translation…even though the Roman Rite may have pre-Latin roots, the Roman Rite, qua mature Roman Rite, is in Latin. Scholarship which wants to take the liturgy of Rome as it was in the 200’s as the ideal Roman Rite, in my opinion, would be like a scholar who wants to do a study on the attributes of human living, by only studying the lives of infants and pre-schoolers.

    My guess is that the final report will highlight an interpretation of the data which is something like this: “among those who prefer to attend Mass in English, the English translation most prefered is…”
    Also, given the fact that a liberal magazine’s survey is going to be responded to by mostly liberals, unless Fr. Z’s blog hijacks it, they probably will (rightly) reckon that most of those who report that they prefer Mass in Latin, are hijacking the survey. Of course, this simply illustrates that fact that voluntary surveys offered to narrow margins of society are a very poor tool to get a sense of what people think (which is also why it seems entirely ethical and reasonable for a conservative blog to hijack the survey…simply to undermine the misinformation which an unhijacked survey would spread…provided that everyone only votes once and votes honestly). This is why the CARA survey is much more reliable. A serious survey like that will usually make an effort to reduce the huge margin of error that voluntary surveys generally produce.

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