WDTPRS Do It Yourself: Friday after (transferred) Ascension

Here is an exercise for you Latinists out there.

Here is the Collect for the Friday after Ascension where Ascension is transferred to Sunday.

Exaudi, Domine, preces nostras, ut, quod tui Verbi sanctificatione promissum est, evangelico ubique compleatur effectu, et plentiudo adoptionis obtineat quod praedixit testificatio veritatis.

This has antecedents in the Veronose and Gelasian Sacramentaries.

Here is a


Graciously hear, O Lord, our prayers, so that that which was promised by the sanctification of Your Word, may be completed everywhere in evangelical effect, and that the fullness of adoption may obtain that which testimony of the Truth foretold.

What to make of this mess of straw and hay?  How to weave this into a basket that holds something?

The vocabulary isn’t particularly challenging, except perhaps effectus, “a doing, effecting” but in respect to the result of an action it means “an operation, effect, tendency, purpose.” 

Pretend you have to work this into smooth English that makes some sense, while reflecting the content of the original.

Okay… stop pretending and do it.

Have at and resist checking the ICEL version.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    Very funny, Father. You know that’s why we keep the Latin. ;-)

  2. jbosco88 says:

    I’m with Therese. But I couldn’t resist. I thought I’d try the Lame Duck:

    O God. We pray that what You said we would have because of Your Holy Word, we will get. And that it will help us believe in You if we don’t already.

  3. Gregg the Obscure says:

    Not claiming to be even a serviceable Latinist (yet), but here’s a whack at it:

    Graciously hear, O Lord, our prayers, such that Thy Word’s promised sanctification may everywhere complete the effect of the Gospel, and that in the fullness of adoption we may obtain that foretold by the testimony of the Truth.

  4. Joannes says:

    À la mode de ‘Comme le prévoit’:

    O God, help us out. Your word already made us holy, but we still need to do better in setting the poor free from their chains. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.

  5. JabbaPapa says:

    Exaudi, Domine, preces nostras ut, quod tui Verbi sanctificatione promissum est evangelico, ubique compleatur effectu, et plenitudo adoptionis obtineat, quod praedixit testificatio, Veritatis.

    Lord, grant us our prayers so that all that is promised for Holy Conversion to Your well-given Word shall be completely fulfilled everywhere, and that the Truth shall be universally chosen by all, as predicted in the Scripture.

    (probably not terribly elegant, but I think it conveys the meaning of the Latin — I fixed the punctuation BTW ; not happy with “chosen”, but can’t find an English equivalent that scans, ad-optio meaning quite literally “to choose”)

  6. Dr. Edward Peters says:

    Johannes, what a SCREAM you are!

    I kinda like the literal, Pater. Can we maybe make “may be completed everywhere in evangelical effect” more of an ablative of means, as in “may [it] be completed by evangelical action”?

  7. Dr. Edward Peters says: “may [it] be completed by evangelical action”?

    I see what you are doing. Sure.

    I used the too obvious “effect” for effectus for the sake of prompting people to think through what the prayer really says.

    And as far as the liking the really literal version, I think it is often okay for a translation to sound like a translation. Let us not forget that English is not really our proper language of worship in the Latin Church.

  8. Matt R says:

    I too like the literal version. The phrase fullness of adoption is always particularly nice to my ears.

  9. Tom in NY says:

    “Hear O Lord, our prayers, so that what is promised by the sanctification of your Word, may be fulfilled everywhere by your Gospel’s power, and, that the fullness of adoption come to pass, which witness of the Truth foresaw.”
    Your English teacher would tell you not to write in English with this structure. But your Latin teacher tells you Latin isn’t English. The writer hooks “promise” and “fulfillment” in fewer words than English, and hooks “evangelium” and “testificatio” together in one sentence when English would use two. And yes, I did borrow a phrase from Tyndall.
    Ut dicitur, lingua latina una sententia, anglica tres loquitur. Salutationes omnibus.

  10. JabbaPapa says:

    I love all of these translations — you should post more of these “exercises”, father !!!

  11. joan ellen says:

    JabbaPapa: “I love all of these translations — you should post more of these “exercises”, father !!!”

    I agree JabbaPapa. Those of us who are in need of more Latin lessons find these most helpful.

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