The New Roman Missal


LORIE CREPEAU (Director of Faith Formation, St. Edna’s Church): My name is Lorie Crepeau. I’m the director of faith formation here.

JUDY VALENTE, correspondent: These parishioners at St. Edna’s Church in suburban Chicago got a crash course on the changes in the Catholic Mass.

CREPEAU: I don’t want you to think of this as, “Oh great, come Advent I’m going to walk into church and the communion rail’s going to be back and ladies are going to have to wear Kleenex on their head and oh me, oh my.” That is not what is happening here.

VALENTE: What has happened is that the words to some of the prayers and music these people have known for the past 40 years have changed. It’s the most significant retooling of the Mass since 1973, when it went from Latin to English.

CREPEAU: We wanted to make it simple for the people to understand, so we didn’t stay true to the actual Latin translation. We wanted to find words that people felt comfortable with. Well, now you’re comfortable. Forty years later you’re comfortable. Now we’re going to try to make you uncomfortable by going back to where it should have been, alright?

post01-romanmissal VALENTE: The Vatican says the Mass is now more authentic, more accurately reflecting the meaning of the original Latin.

ARCHDIOCESAN DVD: Will the changing of this frequently used dialogue be easy? Certainly not.

CREPEAU: In the current translation we say that “I have sinned through my own fault.” Now I’m going to say, “I have greatly sinned,” but then they want to reinforce this, obviously, because now they’ve added “through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault,” and you say, “I get it! It’s my fault! I get it!”

VALENTE: Some of the changes don’t fall trippingly off the tongue. In the Creed, for example, the part about Jesus being one with the Father becomes “consubstantial with the Father.”

CREPEAU: It is a $50 word. Now imagine a third-grader trying to do this, because third grade is where they teach the creed.

ARCHDIOCESAN DVD: “Dominus vobiscum,” and the response, “Et cum spiritu tuo,” presently translated as: “The Lord be with you.” “And also with you.”

post02-romanmissalVALENTE: “And also with you” becomes “and with your spirit.” Other changes are more extensive.

ARCHDIOCESAN DVD: Indeed, as you can see, the entire hymn is reimagined and restructured…

VALENTE: For priests, the Mass becomes quite different.

ARCHDIOCESAN DVD: The new translations of the Roman Missal involve a new way of speaking for the priest at Mass.

VALENTE: But many priests are not happy with the changes. They’ve criticized the new translation as archaic, ugly — even wrong.

REV. LARRY JANOWSKI: I haven’t met a priest yet who feels that this is a good thing, that this is an improvement in the liturgy.

VALENTE: Father Larry Janowski is a Franciscan priest in the Chicago diocese who objects to the literal translation of words from the original Latin.

JANOWSKI: From what I’ve seen they’re like sawdust in the mouth. They’re difficult to say.

VALENTE: For example, this prayer:

post03-romanmissalJANOWSKI: (reading) “Therefore, Lord, we pray, graciously accept this oblation of our service, that of your whole family, which we make to you also for those to whom you have been pleased to give the new birth of water and the Holy Spirit, granting them forgiveness of all their sins. Order our days in your peace and commend that we be delivered from eternal damnation and counted among the flock of those you have chosen.” That’s quite a mouthful.

VALENTE: Janowski was so concerned that he wrote a letter to Chicago’s Cardinal Francis George, which said in part:

JANOWSKI: (reading from letter) English has the greatest vocabulary of any living language on earth, yet the prescription is that we not only adhere to a stiff, ugly, nonvernacular translation, but actually delights in convoluted sentence structure and anachronistic language, and then calls it reverence.

VALENTE: The retranslation process began in the 1980s with a group of theologians working in concert with linguists, writers, even poets. But the Vatican rejected that translation and instead decided to rewrite the entire Roman Missal or prayer book, of which the Mass is only a part.

REV. EDWARD FOLEY: Then, in 2000, Pope John Paul II announced there would be a new missal, and if there was going to be a new missal you had to start the entire translation process all over again. So it began again.

post04-romanmissalVALENTE: Father Edward Foley is a professor of liturgy and music.

FOLEY: I think the most problematic part of the whole thing has been the process. I think it was much more secretive than the previous translation process. We knew who the translators were in the previous process. Here, we did not.

VALENTE: In an open letter to the US bishops, Father Anthony Ruff, a liturgist who had been heavily involved in the new translation, refused to promote it, saying “The Holy See allowed a small group to hijack the translation at the final stage, how unsatisfactory the final text is….how much deception and mischief have marked this process—and then when I think of our Lord’s teachings on service and love and unity…I weep.”

Eucharistic Prayer: “When supper was ended, he took the cup…”

VALENTE: The consecration is the holiest part of the Mass. Even a small change here—from the word “all” to the word “many”—has proven controversial.

Eucharistic Prayer: “He gave the cup to his disciples and said, take this all of you and drink from it. This is the cup of my blood, the blood of the new and everlasting covenant. It will be shed for you and for all so that sins may be forgiven.”

post05-romanmissalJANOWSKI: Our understanding of the sacrifice of Christ in the world today is that it is for all people, and to say “for many” is a very difficult thing for a priest to even get out. I know priests who say it violates their conscience to say that.

THERESA WATKINS (Parishioner): Change is always hard. So I think there will be some pushback from some people, especially because we’ve been doing it for so long.

KATHY KEMNETZ (Parishioner): I think they’re good, I think they’re good. Some will take getting used to.

ERNIE KEMNETZ (Parishioner): I lived through Vatican II and all of that change, and that was something else, and like she was saying, there were a number of pastors who were not fully involved. They fought it.

VALENTE: Despite the controversy, the Mass remains the heart of their faith to most Catholics.

CREPEAU: Remember, the Eucharist is who we are. It is everything that we do. It’s the center of what we are, and everything else comes out from that.

FOLEY: The Roman Catholic Church is not a democracy, and we do have a pope and we do have bishops, and they are the arbiters. The Mass does not belong to me. The liturgy belongs to, the Mass belongs to the church, and I have been called to be an official representative of the church, and it’s not for me to change. It’s for me to do it as effectively and as well as possible.

VALENTE: In a statement, the US bishops said there is “an openness and readiness to receive the new text.” Some priests clearly aren’t ready yet.

JANOWSKI: At some point, I will be required to teach the congregation about what is coming, and I cannot lie to the people. I cannot pretend to be enthusiastic about a translation that I don’t believe in. I will say what needs to be said, but I will have to say to those people whom I love that my heart isn’t in it, and I dread saying that.

VALENTE: But for now, it seems, Catholics will have to learn to live with the changes, whether they like them or not.

For Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly, this is Judy Valente in Chicago.

  • Joanne





  • Robbie

    Hey, get real. All we’re going to be doing is FINALLY saying what the Latin Mass says, but in English. That’s it, nothing more, nothing less. We will FINALLY have a Mass that MATCHES the rest of the church. ONLY in America do we NOT echo the Latin Mass. As for Father Janowski, he’s like so many other American priests, more worried about his own desires instead of the Church.

  • JDE

    Once again, the hierarchy of the Church – especially this Pope – demonstrate that they live in an isolated bubble of their own making, and are so completely out of touch with consensual reality as to be totally irrelevant. It’s a shame that so many people allow them to have so much authority over their lives.

  • mari

    FYI: The reporter is mistaken. The mass was changed from Latin to English in 1963, not 1973. I remember that we were allowed to eat meat on Friday in school (Catholic) to celebrate. What I heard this evening was really disappointing. The words were beautiful to me in Latin, and later in English, but it sounds as if the changes are gobbledygook. The idea behind using English is so that more people will understand. Incomprehensible and ridiculous words twisted into long sentences is like a bad translation of Marcel Proust. It seems to me that issues more relevant such as birth control and abortion, changing the macho aspects of the church and embracing women as priests would be more needed than long and windy translations that obscure the meaning of the words in the services.

  • Nancy

    Mr. Janowski exposed his lack of knowledge of Catholic doctrine and history. He used both his voice and his pen without either knowing the subject matter or, apparently, bothering to research it. Perhaps (somehow!) he has never studied Saint Thomas Aquinas’s Summa Theologica or The Catechism by Decree of The Holy Council of Trent or Saint Alphonsus de Liguori’s Treatise on The Holy Euc harist . Any of the three would’ve clearly explained the correctness of “for many.” But, I will try to explain it very simple to this simple man: Christ’s sacrifice was sufficient for all men, but all do not receive the benefit, through their own fault. Please read up, Mr. Janowski, and then correct yourself publically, for your benefit and for the many who watched this program.

  • alex

    typical PBS story, you only spoke to liberal wings of the Church. Many are enthusiastic about the new faithful translation. this is why people want to defund PBS it seems you only get liberal commentators to support YOUR ideas. Detractors are no different than Henry VIII. “I will get MY divorce, no Pope is going to tell me!!” An look what that thinking has wrought. 1000′s of christian denominations. Obey or go to the Episcopaleans they take anybody and teach anything the want.

  • Alex

    In my parish there were evenings devoted to teaching this new missal to the parish and I simply could not bring myself to go. With all of the social justice issues, including poverty and abuse, that face our world and our church, to even suggest that the missal needs this kind of attention is ludicrous. This merely serves the idea that the Church is a pedantic, self-involved institution that is completely deaf to the longings and sufferings of the larger world. If the hierarchy wishes to pray in this manner, that is what will happen. But I wonder how many of the worshiping assembly, that the hierarchy claims is “The Church,” will respond by praying these convoluted, inarticulate prayers and responses as ordered. Perhaps we will once again be the silent congregation wrapped in our own thoughts while the priest “says Mass.” This certainly would be getting back to the tradition of the Latin Mass.

  • Chris Reynard

    Do you Fathers, or Mothers of children, want your children to talk to you like that prayer Rev. Jankowski read when they’re asking you for something (let alone thank you?!)?
    Damage has been done but, they *really* can’t MAKE you say this _____… I’m just saying.

  • Bobadilla

    “I know priests who say it violates their conscience to say that.” It violates their conscience to directly quote Jesus? Well now we know why the disciples misunderstood our Lord so often: these priests weren’t there to correctly reinterpret His misstatements.

  • JAL

    Robbie – thank you. I have been following this since last September. I find that anyone who is agansit the change has not taken the time to understand the picture as a whole. That includes the clergy. There are some bloggers whose agenda is to cause discent, and it not because of anything els other than that they had been left out of the process. I cant wait for Adevnt 2011.

  • Joseph

    I heartely agree with Alex. The hierarchy is fiddling while people are walking away from the church in large numbers. How many people do you know you attend Mass every weekend? I have relatives who have been generational Catholics and many of them have joined other denominations or have given up on church altogether. This translation change is, and I have this from a very authentic source, tragic. A small group of translators have hijacked the prayer of the church. Every language has nuances and if we as Americans are to pray in our vernacular then let us do so. Don’t push a literal translation of Latin down our throats and expect us to swallow it, or even speak it. I will continue to respond “And also with you” because the person/priest who has addressed me is a person who is incarnate, not a disembodied human. The priest addresses us, laity, as “with you”. Seems to me that the change to “spirit” is another effort to make the priest more than he is.

  • Kathy

    I agree with Robbie. I wish this episode also would have included priest who are in favor of the change. I happen to know some and would be glad to share this information.

  • Adam

    I agree with what people are saying about resisting the change. The change won’t happen if we don’t allow it to happen. If we refuse to say the new responses and continue to say the old responses the church will get the message.

  • LGB

    Vatican II was mis-used by many modernist into thinking they can steer the Church into a direction of non-compulsory to the orthodoxy of the Church. Orthodoxy is IMPORTANT. and Those who oppose the edict from Rome are not loyal to the Church founded by Christ himself.

    The mass does not belong to YOU, it belongs to Christ and his successors. The Latin Missal text that has been used for many years are to be recited——the only difference is that Vatican II has allowed its use in the common local “vernacular” language.

    The Church is not a democracy. If you seek democracy in your church services, then you are more than welcome to excommunicatio your soul and join an Episcopalian Protestant Church service.

    and SHAME on the posters here who treat excommunication lightheartedly. I feel that those who oppose what Rome and Pope John Paul II himself has ordered back in 2000 are promoting heresy and modernism. Sorry, you are either a TRUE Catholic, or NOT.

    Stop faking your Catholicism and live your life according to the teachings and holy Magisterium of the One, Truly, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church founded on Saint Peter.


  • Tony Kaiser

    The current ICEL has various weaknesses, not the least of is it’s pedestrian language. We’re praying to GOD, not chatting with Bob on the street corner. I had the blessing of breaking bread with an advisor to Vox Clara (the group of English-speaking Bishops that oversee the ICEL translation effort) by the name of Fr. Jeremy Driscoll, OSB. Note that this was at St. Anselmo in Rome, during Holy Week. St. A is the home of the Pont. Liturgical Institute. He said that someone complained to him that “Who knows what ‘consubstantial’ means?” He retorted very pointedly “Who knows what ‘one in being’ means?” If you understand what he was getting at, saying “one in being” is really heresy. Then you have all the weakly/improperly translated prayers in the current ICEL, some of which, instead of being prayers in the proper sense, are just statements of what God is doing, or some even sound more like commands to God to do something.

    Anyway, they’ve only been working on this new translation for a stinking DECADE. It’s about time we moved on and put 1970 in the rear-view mirror where it belongs. Forty years in the desert of lamely translated MR is soon to be over, but some of you want to stay in the desert.

    Oh, and Joanne, PERSONAL prayer is from the heart, per se. Public Corporate Liturgical Prayer, in EVERY OTHER rite of the Catholic Church (i.e. Byzantine, Maronite, Melkite, Syro-Chaldean, etc.) uses either a sacred language like Greek, Syriac, Arabic, or a sacred form of the vernacular, not a pedestrian, informal form like you’re talking to your buddies. When you talk to the KING, the RISEN LORD, do you dare to talk to HIM like you were talking to your pals?

  • Jesse

    I for one am extremely excited about the new and more authentic translations, and many i know are also excited.

  • James

    Hey all of you protesting against the Holy Father Benedict XVI and the Church, why don’t you just leave and join the Episcopal church? They will take you with arms wide open and there you are free to dissent and believe what you want and have liturgies which are mearly religious entertainment.

    The Church needs this reform. Look at the status of the Faith in the English speaking world today since the introduction of the Novus Ordo. It’s in shambles. Man needs good liturgy and more than that, it is our duty to give God the best we can. Many of the collects and prayers of the present Novus Ordo are so bane they hardly reflect what it is that a Catholic believes. Remember the old axiom, “Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi.” The new translation is long overdue.

    Oremus pro invicem,

  • JDE

    Several of the comments here demonstrate that there is no reasoning with Catholic fundamentalists, just as there is no reasoning with protestant fundamentalists.

    @Nancy: “But, I will try to explain it very simple to this simple man: Christ’s sacrifice was sufficient for all men, but all do not receive the benefit, through their own fault. ”

    Conservative Christians invariably think that dissenters are merely ignorant of doctrine. He understands it, Nancy; he simply disagrees with you.

    @Tony Kaiser: “When you talk to the KING, the RISEN LORD, do you dare to talk to HIM like you were talking to your pals?”

    God, if he exists, isn’t merely a projection your own ego.

    I know it’s difficult for authoritarians such as yourselves to wrap your minds around this.

  • Bob O

    I remember attending Mass a few years ago when it dawned on me that there was a lack of reverence. I tried out a Tridentine Latin Mass and was awed by prayerfulness and solemnity of the faithful. When I read the translation of the Latin, I was astonished by how poetic and prayerful this “old” Mass was. Now we have a new translation of the English Missal that is so close to the latin. Please give the new English Missal a chance, you just might be surprised.

    No matter what you think of this translation, something has to be said about the unity of the Catholic Church. There will always be those who don’t agree with what the Church decides. But thats what makes it different from protestant denominations. The Catholic Church has a final authority. Without it, the Church would not have lasted almost 2,000 years. .

  • Raul

    People are Catholic by choice. As Bob stated the Catholic Church has final authority. If people don’t agree with the Church THEN LEAVE.

  • barb

    The re- translation is absolutely necessary. The Mass now is nothing more than watered down entertainment. The Catholics are leaving in droves to go to the Protestant Churches which have the “entertainment ” thing more entertaining that the Catholics. The Mass is not suppose to be “entertainment”. So too bad it it take hard work to raise the intelligence of the congregation and to adjust to Praying the Mass instead of going to Mass.

    This will weed out those that do not want the Mass. Better have Holy Mass than a Mass that helps people lose their faith…FYI to all you that have let yourselves be “dumbed up” for the last 40 years!

  • Tim P

    I just feel I need to chime in. To those people on this thread that are opposing the change, question… How many of you have been to a Latin Mass? I have, I acutually use to acolyte the Latin Mass at my church. And honestly after reading the translation I actually wished for a closer English translation.

    To comment on one of the changes, when we say “and also with you” in the current Mass it always felt like I was taking to the guy down the street. In the Latin and our New translation by saying “and with your spirit” we are recognizing that the priest though human like us have been imbued with an indelible mark from the Holy Spirit. The Catechism states “Though the sacrament (Holy Orders)priests by the annointing of the Holy Spirit are signed with a special characterand so are configured to Christ… ” (CCC1562) So when we begin saying “and with your spirit”, we will be addressing the fact that the priest, though a man like us, has been set apart to act in the person of Christ Jesus. I am actually aready using this change.

    And who knows maybe when WE LAITY acknowlege the fact that our priests are set apart be God, and we regain the respect that was once given, it may encourage and strengthen them. And we will be blessed with a stronger priesthood.

    There is so much moreI could say, but I will leave it with this… I for one am looking forward to the changes

  • Rosemary

    I thought that this is the Catholic church recognized for its unity and oneness! Instead of enhancing the Eucharistic celebration the new missal is creating separation and division among our Catholic community “Before” it has even been implemented! Don’t we have enough to take sides over without including our prayers? Suport or reject the new missal, but not your neighbor for his or her belief!!!

  • Helen

    The fact that this is being called the NEW Roman Missal is a joke! I have my grandmother’s missal from 1960. One side of the page is in Latin and the other side is translated to English. We are not getting a “new” translation. We are being taken back to the translation that was in the missals in 1960 before Vatican II. This is why there is so much backlash. The current hierarchy wants to restore the church back to pre Vatican II. They want to take us backward and have us say things that make no sense to us. They don’t care if any of it makes sense to us or is less meaningful. They just want to gain back more control. But the irony is that this is going to undermine their authentic authority rather than reinforce it. But how can we peacefully protest? It saddens me that I may feel more comfortable in an Episcopal service than in a Catholic one later this year.

  • Steve

    All of this bickering saddens me. Some want to revolt, while others want to throw a party and throw those who don’t agree with with this “New” missal, right out the front door of the church. Some say: “Leave the Church if you don’t like it.” Please don’t forget, We are the Church….the People of God. We have to always ask ourselves….What would Christ do? Christ’s Peace to all.

  • Father Bob

    PBS focuses on the negative. How surprising!

  • Annie

    No, Catholics who do not like the new missal do not have to leave. If people refuse to say the new words, then the Church will be forced to listen to the people. We’re not afraid of the priests any more, and the priests, bishops, and the pope don’t seem to realize that.

  • Xavier Rynne

    Sad…again we have a small group speaking for the many and telling ordinary people how to speak and pray as if they don’t know how. Another example of the arrogance of the Church hierarchy again attempting to be relevant in faith lives of people in the pew by meddling unsolicited in the prayer and “work of the people.” We are told the new Mass is a closer translation of the Latin, but I don’t remember ever hearing someone asking for this after Mass or at coffee and donuts. I have no affinity to the language of Caeser or of Pontius Pilate or of a Roman Culture that has long vanished for good reason. To make it all worse, they changed things that did not need changing and did not (refused) to change things that needed to be changed. From what I can gather rewriting the Roman Missal was one of those things done not because anyone asked for it or because it was even needed…it seems to have been done out a need to express authority out of desire to be somehow relevant and needed to be needed.

    As demonstrated above anyone who raises questions or disagrees with the Church leaders are simply labeled Catholic Bashers or unfaithful. This is a handy and easy position for the Church and those who robotically spew out what they’re told to. It’s an easy and unenlightened position since you don’t have to engage in any thoughtful discourse. You don’t have to support your ideas or be accountable. You just have to say we have always done it this way and we are always right and you are wrong and you’re going to hell. It seems as though there is a choice to be made, be faithful to Jesus and the Gospel or be faithful to the Church leaders.

  • Michael Cook

    People, relax. This pendulum has gone back and forth for two thousand years. This all involves human beings, all of whom make mistakes. Look at the whole history of the Roman Church, not just the past few years. These prayers have nothing to do with your salvation. These changes are intended to return “mystery” to these rituals becsause the hierarchy increases it’s importance with increases in “mystery.” They are just trying to keep their understanding alive but Bishops, Cardinals, and Popes all get replaced. Christ’s life is our model and the route to salvation, study it, live it and don’t be distracted by this facade.

  • nopcspokenhere

    Must be something about Chicago.

    Annie Said: ” No, Catholics who do not like the new missal do not have to leave. If people refuse to say the new words, then the Church will be forced to listen to the people. We’re not afraid of the priests any more, and the priests, bishops, and the pope don’t seem to realize that.”

    OOOOH Annie you are so brave, so don’t say the words!—again for the millionith time you have no authority re: the rubrics of the Mass. You are not afraid of the priests any more? Have you heard, ‘Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven” seems pretty plain to me the Magisterium of the Church is secure in the Holy Father.

    Here is why people are leaving the church not showing up for Mass/Sacraments: they simply are lazy. It takes a lot of work to be a faithful Catholic. Some people would rather go to the ‘entertainment’ churches where they just have to sit back and clap their hands and say Amen. Flip thru the channels. What is sublime, mysterious, awesome, heaven sent about that?

    Keep you ‘social justice’, your ‘climate change’ ‘illegal alien’ issues OUTSIDE of the church. I am sick of the ‘activist’ so called ‘catholic’ who espouse this fleecing of US. Really what I would like to see is the Holy Father slap an interdict on the US until we clean up our house here. Then once the Mass and Sacraments were said again, you would be happy to open your mouth in prayer.

  • Xavier Rynne

    Here is why people are leaving the Church….because there is no attempt to be relevant. They aren’t being heard and the Church is more worried about people being faithful to the Church rather than being faithful to the Gospel. The one thing the Church has going for it and takes advantage of daily is the idea of Catholic obligation or simply put Catholic guilt. They have brainwashed generations of people in believing that the popes and bishops are always right and the people in the pew are cattle and are always wrong….Latin good…the people’s language bad. Piety good-social justice (one of the primary things Jesus preached about) bad. Just read through the creed and try and tell me how the new one is more “mystical” or more “meaningful.” Consubstantial? Seriously? This is better and easier to understand? They tell us this is closer to the Latin…I don’t care about Latin anymore….no one speaks it. Isn’t about time we moved on and simply deal with the way people speak? Is it really that important that the USA translation is as close to the Latin as the translation in Nigeria? The reason people are leaving is because they are searching for a Church where they are respected, listened to and looking for a community where they are more interested in the Gospel instead of saving their own phoney baloney jobs. I would love the holy father to slap an interdict on our mouths also…that would be the final act of a desperate church trying to be relevant and meaningful in a world that no longer is interested in being treated like children and talked down to. It won’t be long before the church will get what it wants…a small group of people all telling each other how great and holy they are…all playing dress up for each other in weird irrelevant get ups while the Gospel and Holy Spirit pours out on people who are open to it and care.

  • alinalotte gloriatv

    I learned my faith by heart – As a 3 yr old participating in Holy Traditional Latin Masses in Poland,observing priests solemnly adoring the Real Eucharistic Presence of Christ in the Tabernacle there was no need of translating Latin,for I absorbed it naturally and nobody had to explain to me the meaning of ” Dominum Vobiscum!” and ” Et cum spiritu tuo” ,o priests, it was. Bob O -thanks for pointing it out : it is all about reverence for Christ expressed in prayerfullness and solemnity not only of the faithful,but first and foremost the priests celebrating the Holy Mysteries themselves. Adam,Annie,Chris Reynard,Joanne – Raul is right, ” they LEFT and no longer walked after Him” ,only consider the fact they did it saying ” This is hard saying,who could accept such a thing” in the spirit of the Original Antichrist,the Lucifer himself,who thought himself so sophisticated he assumed he is equal to God and as such does not have treat Him with revereance.

  • alinalotte

    I learned my faith by heart -as a three year old participating in Holy Traditional Latin Masses in Poland with priests worshiping at the feet of the Altar,adoring the Real Presence,grown men moved to tears having received His Body ,kneeling,there was no need for translation,nobody had to explain to me :” Dominum Vobiscum! ” and ” Et cum spiritu tio”,o priests,it was. Faith comes by hearing.I never read the Bible before coming to US ,yet I knew the Living Word so well that when I could instantly catch up on all the modernists innovations aimed at doing away with the Real Presence and alarmed the Holy Father about it in my first letters to him in 1998 and 1999. October 7 th 2000 having witnessed open apostasy and heresies preached during Intnl Eucharistic Congress in Washington,D.C. and not one Paul to correct “the erring Peter” I alarmed Rome.Annie,Adam,Helen,Chris Reynard,Joanne – Raul is right on :” they left and no longer walked after Him” … murmuring :”this is hard saying,who could accept such a thing!”

  • Patricia

    I can’t get over the comments I’ve been reading from those who want to keep the Mass in English even though it does not translate correctly from the Latin. They talk about Priests, Bishops and the Pope as if they are just your average Joe who happens to wear a black suit all the time. They forget that the priest is the Persona Christe during the Mass and not just one of your co-workers. They talk about the Latin being shoved down their throats. What about 1963 when English was pushed down the throats of the faithful who have been attending the Latin Mass for centuries. Now all of a sudden, Wow 40 years! As if that could compare to throwing the Latin Mass out after hundreds of years. We all had to learn new prayers for the entire Mass.

    Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict have gotten thousands of letters from the faithful telling them about the lack of reverence not only in the English Mass itself but of the people and how they act in Church. When the Latin went out so did reverence, the sense of sacredness and respect. People attend Sunday Mass in shorts rather than wearing a respectful outfit in God’s house. (You wouldn’t dress that way if you were going to meet the Queen of England would you?) They leave the church with the Host still in their mouths. And the music and architecture is almost blasphemous. Pope Benedict recently spoke about the barrenness of the new churches and the old ones where all the statues, stations of the cross, and crucifixes and altar rails have been ripped out.

    And talk about a “group of people” hijacking the wording of the Mass, what do you think ICEL did when they rewrote not only the Mass but the Bible as well. “All generations will call me blessed” was rewritten “All generations will call me happy”. Really??? “Hail Mary, full of grace” became “Highly favored daughter”. We’re all highly favored daughters! It was all to bring Jesus, Mary and all the saints down to our level. Jesus was no longer God, he was our friend, our buddy. Add to that everyone can handle the Holy Eucharist. Everyone up on the stage and get into the act. Lay extraordinary ministers, lay readers, lay people bringing the Host to the sick, teenagers strumming their guitars and bouncing to the music on the altar. Music so loud you can’t hear yourself pray.

    Is that what you all consider to be a better Mass! Learning a little Latin will not kill anyone. I understood the Latin Mass as a child. I could say the Latin responses along with the altar boys. Don’t tell me you are so dumb you can’t learn a few Latin phrases.

    People left the Church in droves because it was not giving them what they need — a sense of worship. They weren’t hearing about their Catholic religion from the pulpit anymore (just nice stories about caring and kindness and social issues). Their priests were not speaking about the Sacraments, sin, purgatory or hell. They don’t want to offend anyone anymore and they don’t want to lose the money. Children for the last 40 years have not been taught the Catholic faith. People under 40 and all their children don’t even know enough to genuflect. Why should they when even the priests don’t, a nod of the head to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is sufficient, after all he’s just our friend.

    Every opportunity to make the Catholic Church more like the Protestant Churches was taken advantage of in the name of Ecumenism. Did the Protestant Churches do anything to bring the churches together? Did they install statues of the saints or Holy Water fountains? Did the replace the empty cross with crucifixes? Do they now pray to Mary? Looks like it was a one way street and we came out on the wrong side.

    So much for changes in the church.

  • Regina

    Patricia — Amen!!! You hit the nail squarely on the head in every instance and I thank you.

  • Betko

    Xavier Rynne posted: “Sad…again we have a small group speaking for the many and telling ordinary people how to speak and pray as if they don’t know how”

    I recall my scripture illustrating how Christ had to teach His disciples how to pray. I also recall scripture relating that Christ gave His power and His authority along with His spirit to those chosen Apostles. Since Christ promised to be with His church until the end of time, well, you know the deal, apostolic succession. You either embrace that Christ is speaking and working through these men or you don’t. If you don’t, then perhaps those who fall into this catagory should reflect once again, on our Lord’s great commision to His apostles, as well as the establishment of the Church.

  • Laura

    Dear Vatican, I have two words for you: “NEW COKE.”

  • Noreen

    Patricia says it all very well. I don’t know how many people are alive today who lived through the truly BIG changes in the Mass. Talk about something hard to get used to. The problem is that the people in the pews have been dumbed down so much in the past. Now, when a few minor adjustments are being made so that the translation of the Mass is a true translation of the Latin, those who “will not obey” are up in arms. Just like the Devil would not obey, that’s all I hear.

    This business about, “They can’t make us do this.” is ridiculous. How childish can you be? The door swings both ways and I’m sure those who offer only dissent will not be missed. You can leave anytime you want and leave the rest of us alone. Instead of complaining about how “the people” will be inconvenienced, we should think instead of how happy Our Lord will be that the truth is being finally professed again.

    I never did like that “We believe”. I only know what I believe not what everyone else in the church believes. I like to speak for myself.

  • Michael Hayden

    It saddens me to read postings of those in favour of the changes telling those opposed to them to accept them or leave. There is a profound spiritual arrogance in those kind of statements. It is valid and necessary to question change. As for the idea that priests and all the church heirarchy, the pope included, should be perceived as Gods repesentitives here on earth? I fear the scandals of the past twenty years, especially the sexual abuse scandals, has fundamentally diminished their moral and spiritual authority. I am an actor who has worked extensively with Shakespeare. However beautiful his language, editing and changing his words so that they may be understood by a modern audience is vital. One must balance the resonance of poetry and language with the need to make it understandable and relevant to a modern audience. I am a Catholic. I will continue to go to mass and say the new prayers, even though I absolutely agree that the language creates more barriers between the people and the ritual of the mass. I will continue to go, to pray, to celebrate in communion, because I need to. I have no choice. But for those who would be comforted by the idea that their adherence to the church and it’s teachings, an adherence which carries with it a disdain for those who have the courage to actively question the teachings of Rome- I tell you I believe your statements to exhibit the worst kind of spiritual arrogance- the kind of arrogance that allows you to judge others so easily, and ultimately calcifies your mind and spirits. One must have courage of their conviction, but always have the humility to listen and learn from others.

  • Bontrager

    What is so funny, ironic, and yet hypocritical is that those who reject, protest, and deny the traditional Latin translations are the same people who would reject, protest, and deny a “modern” translation of literary classics that are written in Old English such as Shakespeare (which high school students are still required to read, interpret, and comprehend). Imagine the outrage if the hundreds of literary classics were stripped of their original text and meaning and “translated” into our modern, contemporary style of English? But yet when the Church tries to restore the translations to be more accurate to the original Latin text, modernists freak out about it. Give me a break….

    It’s obvious that the posters who spew venom at the Catholic Church’s authority are no longer Catholic and they made up their mind about the Church long before the changes to the new Missal. The Church has ALWAYS been authoritarian. If you choose to disagree with their authority, more power to you, but you are no longer a Catholic. It’s okay, move on, peace be with you. Hence the thousands of protestant Christian denominations. It’s okay if you don’t want to follow the rules of the Church. But don’t be angry because the Church doesn’t cater to YOU and YOUR beliefs. It’s the one and only Christian church that still has a backbone and refuses to succumb to popular opinion. No one forces anyone to be Catholic. If you hold a different set of beliefs, God Bless you, but the least you can do is respect the Catholic Church for adhering to the foundation upon which it was built for 2000 years.

  • JDE

    @Noreen: “This business about, “They can’t make us do this.” is ridiculous. How childish can you be? …Instead of complaining about how “the people” will be inconvenienced, we should think instead of how happy Our Lord will be that the truth is being finally professed again.”

    You believe everything the Church hierarchy as told you about “truth”. I agree – how childish can you be?

  • Jim

    In a single week, Penn State did more to right itself in the face of sexual abuse than the Catholic Church has done in ten years’ time. This is an embarrassment to ordinary Catholics and continuing evidence of profound and continuing need of clerical reform. In such a context, our highest hierarchy thinks that somehow the correct translation of “et cum spiritu tuo” is the biggest fish it has to fry. This is not only poor vision, but more is also the case. Even if we consider this as pure liturgy, the working text is not so carefully done and is not obviously a very great augmentation to our ability to pray in a suitable and useful way. We need to have a hierarchy of grownups, and we don’t have it yet. Joe Paterno did his business better than Cardinal Ratzinger, and his job is less a moral one. It seems unreasonable that His “Holiness” keeps his job and his high status.

  • Fr. Xavier

    Yes, there is always better way of doing things than we are doing. The new ROMAN MISSAL is the outcome of such. It does not necessarily mean the previous one is wrong, or less correct. This, the new one is the better translation. No one may say why to obey hierarchy. If he or she can’t obey the Church, then neither he or she can obey the Holy Spirit. ” I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church” is to be really meditated such persons.
    Congratulations to those who are responsible for the work.

  • adaeze

    the truth is nothing and no one can make me leave the church but the question is what is wrong with the Vatican || ( that has taught us Grace) that the church suddenly decides to go back to the original. I see a legalistic nature in this. i know i have sinned but must i confess to it being grievous for God to forgive me the answer is no. In as much as tradition is part of the church we need not allow it overcome the Word or the leading of the Holy spirit.

    This is not the time to insult or push anyone away. its time to pray for God s Grace and direction in this matter.

  • Jim

    I’m not a Catholic, actually I’m a Buddhist (though a lover of liturgy in all faith traditions), but I teach religious studies and want to recast something in Fr. Xavier’s posting from 21 Nov: “If he or she can’t obey the Church, then neither he or she can obey the Holy Spirit. ” I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church” is to be really meditated such persons.”

    I feel the need to point out that every Protestant congregation recites the Apostle’s Creed with the phrase “holy catholic church” every Sunday — note “catholic” with a little c, not a big C. Catholic in this sense means universal, as in all believers and followers of Christ, and *isn’t* understood to be a reference to the ROMAN Catholic Church specifically.

    Again, I’m not making any argument about Fr. Xavier’s opinion — I don’t have a stake in this. Just pointing out the power of language and how it is understood and interpreted, which clearly is a major part of the controversy over the revised Mass.

  • Dr K

    God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit meet before setting off. God the Father says “So, Son, where you goin for vacation? God the Son says “I think I’ll go to Florida; I’m in the mood for some warm weather and lounging on the beach. Where you goin?” God the F says, “I think I’ll go to the Rockies. I need some cool, fresh air and beautiful scenery. Where you goin Spirit?” The Holy Spirit says, “I think I’ll go to Rome…..I’ve never been there before”. Such seriousness and vitriol. The Kingdom will only come to those who become like children: not in childishly and unthinkingly accepting Father’s pronouncements, but in their joyous, playful wisdom, their ability to be non-attached to ideas, and to live fully and joyfully in the moment. All doctrine and dogma are feeble fingers pointing to the brilliance and beauty of the moon. They are helpful signs pointing us in the right direction but don’t mistake them for God’s complete, transmitted Truth. That’s why we need powerful and moving liturgy; because words are so limited. True faith is not found in unquestioned, cognitive acceptance of doctrine and orthodox acceptance of the meaning of liturgy. It is found in the ability to say yes to the one True Mystery which is God, and which confronts us and challenges us everyday, both in church and out.; it is the ability to look at the faults and inconsistancies of the world (and our church; yes conservative Catholics, it does have them) and still be able to say yes. Three key pieces need to creatively shape and inform each other if the church has any hope of thriving and surviving: the bishops, the theologians, and the community of the faithful (the term laity is an insult). Too many of our best Catholic theologians are increasingly censored and/or bullied into silence or conformity; thus the deafening silence by bishops, theologians, and pastors regarding human sexuality, who does or does not get the Eucharist, etc. And if the teachings, rituals, and liturgies do not resonate with meaning among the the faithful (which I include myself a part of), then it will wither and die. I stay Catholic because I believe in the Spirit of God, in Christ alive here in the present, both within me, the community of faith, and the Eucharist. The Incarnation continues here and now and is not reserved for a male clergy to dole out as they see fit. Like the Pascal Mystery, there is much that is dying within the church, just as much is struggling to be born. Much of the institutional church is dying. The bishops are spending huge amounts of time and effort in preventing these things from dying. But they must if the Spirit is to be born anew. So I will stay and will keep complaining just like a good, non-clerical Catholic should.

  • Channah

    Maybe the Catholic Church should think first about their waying thinking-their beliefs that do not join with the 21st Century-before they start changing words in their services. Their outdated beliefs are the first things that should changed.

  • James LaForest

    I think the value of translations is that they get people to think more about the prayers, to engage with the texts on a different level. If you spend your entire life saying the same thing over and over, week by week, day by day, I wonder if you really hear it anymore; if you are really saying it with your heart. The Church is showing that it is trying to build on liturgy, which is a positive thing. I would guess that some of the changes might get ignored in practice, and I woudn’t be surprised if some changes revert. But others will be seemless transitions, and in the process the faithful will have the opportunity, in the uncomfortable moments when they say the “wrong” response, of being able to reflect a bit more deeply on the words they are saying.

  • Teresa K SFO

    December 8,2011 at 7:15 am

    My Dear Vatican


    I am very happy about changed ”NEW-ROMAN-MISSAL”
    i read all comments i agree what some of them said i need to tell the truth as well but i do not want publish it right now praying and waiting God will answer me for surely to the i hope people will change there hearts an bad behave as well meaning is Roman Latin Catholic Church here is became protestant.not all the priests some of them because of money.most of parishioners suffering i hope and praying My Dear Vatican will solve this problem as well because here we are international parishioners with local together
    .” Remember the Good News that I carry, ‘Jesus Christ risen from the dead,sprung from the race of David’;it is on account of this that I have my own hardships to bear,even to being chained like a criminal-but they cannot chain up God’s news.So I bear it all for the sake of those who are chosen,so that in the end they may have the salvation that is in Christ Jesus and the eternal glory that comes with it”.(The second letter of St Paul to Timothy 2:8-15) i loves so much St Paul letters I Thank God and Thank you all my prayerful wishes May The Lord bless you and keep all of Us In Christ.Amen!

  • Fay B.

    They’ve taken all the joy out of the mass. I joined the Church 40 years ago and this is NOT the church I joined. I’m looking for a new church. Sorry Fr, Xaviar but the Holy Spirit and the Catholic Church are not synonymous.