10 Dec now Memorial of Our Lady of Loreto (Novus Ordo) – LATIN PROBLEM ALERT

In the Bolletino yesterday, we read that Francis has made 10 December in the Novus Ordo an Optional Memorial (Memoria ad libitum) for Our Lady of Loreto.

The decree from the Congregation for Divine Worship is in the above-linked Bolletino in several languages, including Latin, which is indicated as the original language.  Yeah… right.

Putting aside the Latin of the decree, there is a glaring mistake in the new Collect for the Memorial, which is to be inserted into liturgical books… mistake and all.

Can you find it?  It slaps you in the face.

De Communi beatae Mariae Virginis


Deus, qui promíssa Pátribus adímplens
beátam Vírginem Maríam elegísti,
ut matrem fíeret Salvatóris,
concéde nobis illíus exémpla sectári,
cuius humílitas tibi plácuit,
et oboediéntia nobis prófuit.
Per Dóminum.

Who are the yokels writing this stuff?

This must be the same team that screwed up the new Preface composed for the Novus Ordo Feast of St. Mary Magdalene. HERE


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, You must be joking! and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. spouse says:

    Well, it ought to be “ut mater fieret Salvatoris”, I reckon…

  2. William says:

    It’s been a long time since I’ve parsed out any Latin, so the mistake is not readily apparent to me.

    I can only guess.

    I can’t make sense of the structure of qui promíssa Pátribus adímplens
    beátam Vírginem Maríam elegísti


    Deus, ..., ut matrem fíeret Salvatóris,

    Does this say that God is the mother of the Savior? “God, …, such that he became mother of the Savior…”

    The rest:

    grant us an example to follow,
    whose humility was pleasing to you,
    and whose obedience is beneficial to us.

    Is it my translation, or does the whole thing seem like a backwards translation from the obsolete ICEL?

  3. Well… promissa seems to be the imperative form of the verb promisso, and should probably be the accusative of the noun promissio, ie, promissionem.

    Agreeing that matrem should be mater. Following the Creed “homo factus est” where homo is in the nominative with a passive form of facio, it would seem that it should be nominative here as well.

    Since fieret has no clear subject, it could be “he” or “she” or “it” but context suggests that it would be she.

    So… the English of what they were trying to say would go something like this:
    God, fulfilling the promise to [our] Fathers, chose the blessed Virgin Mary, that she may be made mother of the Redeemer, grant to us to follow her examples whose humility pleased you and whose obedience benefitted us.

  4. The error is “matrem” (accusative). Should be “mater” (nominative). The clause should read:

    “ut mater fíeret Salvatóris (that she might become the mother of the Savior)”

    I think the author was getting indirect discourse confused with the subjunctive.

    Also, I’d skip the acute accent over “Salvatoris.” Latin doesn’t have acute accents.

    [But liturgical books include accents for proper pronunciation.]

  5. Andrew says:

    spouse: You reckon right.

    She is elected to be a mother: a subject (mater), not an object (matrem). The closest comparison in English would be to say that “her was elected” instead of “she was elected”.

  6. albinus1 says:

    “Promissa” is fine. It’s not the imperative; it’s the neuter plural of the perfect passive participle. “Things having been promised” = “promisses.” That’s not unusual in Latin. It’s actually one of the few things about this text that *isn’t* wonky.

  7. Hidden One says:

    Progressive that I am, I fully endorse the careful training and subsequent widespread employment of innumerable married viri probati as Latinists, and I wholeheartedly support the movement to encourage women to become Latinists, no matter how unpopular that view may be in certain sectors of the Church right now.

    I firmly believe that widespread encouragement of married men and of women–married or not–to study Latin will not in the slightest decrease the Church’s supply of celibate male Latinists, and indeed I expect that a worldwide boom in married and/or female Latinists in the Catholic Church would play a significant role in boosting our supply of celibate male Latinists, even in missionary countries and regions like Germany and the Amazon.

    Let us all encourage reform of the Church through the promotion of the study of Latin by Catholics everywhere, male or female, young or old, married or celibate. Truly, it is a properly diverse grassroots movement such as this that has the best chance of reforming the Vatican and bringing its use of Latin into the 22nd century.

  8. JPCahill says:

    What was wrong with the original collect for Our Lady of Loreto?

  9. mhazell says:

    I will limit myself to the observation that this collect appears to have been taken from the 1987 Collectio Missarum de Beata Maria Virgine, from the Mass formulary Beata Maria Virgo, electa Israel progenies (n. 1, alternative collect; changes, same text):

    Deus, qui promissa Patribus adimplens,
    beatam Virginem Mariam
    , praecelsam Filiam Sion, elegisti,
    concede nobis illius exempla sectari,

    quae humilis tibi placuit,
    oboediens nobis profuit.
    Per Dominum.

    I am not sure about the Collectio‘s source for this text, though I can find out later if anyone is interested. In the English Collection of Masses of the Blessed Virgin Mary, ICEL rendered this prayer as follows:

    O God, who, fulfilling the promise made to our Fathers,
    chose the Blessed Virgin Mary,
    the noble daughter of Zion,
    grant that we may follow her example,
    for her humility was pleasing to you
    and her obedience profitable to us.
    Through our Lord.

    It is also perhaps worth noting that this is not the collect that was in the pro aliquibus locis section of the Missale Romanum up until 14th February 1961, when the feast of the Translation of the Holy House of Our Lady was suppressed by means of the Instruction De calendariis particularibus. That collect reads as follows:

    Deus, qui beatae Mariae Virginis domum per incarnati Verbi mysterium misericorditer consecrasti, eamque in sinu Ecclesiae tuae mirabiliter collocasti, concede, ut, segregati a tabernaculis peccatorum, digni efficiamur habitatores domus sanctae tuae. Per eundem Dominum.

    In response to JPCahill, I suspect that the phrase segregati a tabernaculis peccatorum provides part of the answer – that sort of vocabulary occurs with much less frequency in the OF as compared with the usus antiquior. It isn’t all bad news, though, as the following English version appears in the Ordinariate’s Divine Worship: The Missal as the collect (first option) for the feast of Our Lady of Walsingham (24 Sep):

    O God, who, through the mystery of the Word made flesh, didst in thy mercy sanctify the house of the Blessed Virgin Mary: do thou grant that we may keep aloof from the tabernacle of sinners, and become worthy indwellers of thy house; through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord.

    (The DW text omits the phrase eamque… collocasti.)

  10. deaconjohn1987 says:

    The Traditional Feast Day for Dec. 10th is OUR LADY OF LORETO TRANSLATION
    of the HOLY HOUSE of LORETO. The COLLECT is:
    O God, who through the Mystery of the Word made flesh, didst in Thy mercy sanctify the House of Blessed Mary the Virgin, and by wondrous means didst place it in the care of Thy Church, grant that we may keep aloof from the tabernacles of sinners, and become worthy habitants of Thy holy house. Through the same our Lord . . .

  11. Joel says:

    I completely missed fio being a linking verb. Whoops.

    I probably would have used fiat instead of fieret, though. (The perfect can have a secondary verb that is present or imperfect subjunctive based on whether or not it is translated as simple past.)

  12. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Is it me,.or is there a pattern of Pope Francis doing/allowing something iffy or shady, and then doing something apparently pious that has needed doing? It is like he is trying to get God on his side again, or the Blessed Mother.

    The annoying thing is that it shows that he does know what is needed and wanted; it just seems that he refuses to do it without some self-benefit or self-reason.

  13. The Cobbler says:


    I think the denial coming out of the Vatican about the Pachamama incident might actually be worse than excusing it, because it strongly suggests that they know they screwed up bigtime and still would rather not admit it.

    Similar thoughts about Francis: he seems pretty intent on getting people to live like heretics, so the fact he always tiptoes up to the edge of the line while trying to avoid getting caught seems an awful lot like he does believe he’d get in bigger trouble for crossing it.

    Can’t really judge their souls, but sometimes I think I should probably worry less about them and more for them, if you know what I mean.

  14. Father G says:

    In searching online to see if Mass propers for Our Lady for Loreto already existed in the Ordinary Form, I discovered the National Conference of Catholic Airport Chaplains.
    ( http://www.nccac.us/ ) . Makes sense that Our Lady of Loreto would be its patroness.

    It has Mass propers for the feast of Our Lady of Loreto: http://www.nccac.us/forms/OLLoreto_insert_new_missal.pdf

    I like the Collect much better than the one proposed.

Comments are closed.