“Just another guy with a blog.  No big whoop.”

February 25, 2010

What if we just said, "Why don't you just get over it?"

The jungle drums of frustration and consternation are beating in reaction to the impending revision of the Roman Missal. Granted, the syncopation is a bit uneven, and the decibel level less than robust, but it's there.

And it's . . . it's simply ineffable.

The Community of Disciples over at America Magazine and their fellow travelers at the National Catholic Reporter are scrambling for the panic button.

They are shocked (shocked!) that the Catholic Church would have the audacity to implement a (long overdue, sorely needed, and eagerly anticipated) new English translation of the Missal without their approval.

On the "What if we just said wait?" website, in the "Statement of Concern," they agonize ...
We are very concerned about the proposed new translations of the Roman Missal. We believe that simply imposing them on our people -- even after a program of preparation -- will have an adverse effect on their prayer and cause serious division in our communities.
We are convinced that adopting translations that are highly controversial, and which leaders among our bishops as well as many highly respected liturgists and linguists consider to be seriously flawed, will be a grave mistake.
For this reason we earnestly implore the bishops of the English-speaking world to undertake a pilot program by which the new translations -- after a careful program of catechesis -- can be introduced into some carefully selected parishes and communities throughout the English-speaking world for a period of one (liturgical) year, after which they can be objectively evaluated.

We are convinced that this approach will address the concerns of those many bishops who feel that they have lost their voice in this matter and that it will also give a voice to the People of God whose prayer is at stake and who accordingly have the most to gain or lose by the translations.
The irony here is rich indeed. These are the same people who cheered on (whether because they were alive at the time or, if they weren't, because they sympathize with those who were) the wholesale imposition in the mid- to late-1960s of radical liturgical changes, often accompanied by serious liturgical abuses, upon unprepared, unsuspecting Catholics who did experience an adverse affect on their prayer and piety as a result.

But now that the shoe is on the other foot and the Church is well on its way to finally correcting certain deficiencies and implementing the actual letter and spirit of Vatican II's document on the Eucharistic Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium, now these same people are indignant (indignant!) that such a thing should be done. How dare the pope and the bishops impose changes in the Liturgy on the faithful?!


  1. Seriously. The irony in this is just mind-blowing, as if the critics have literally no sense of shame or self-awareness.

    Fortunately, it seems like this is more like the baby boomer death rattles than it does the jungle drums of any new dissent movement.

    I heard it described very well to a middle-aged Catholic dissident: "the reason young Catholics don't believe like you is that people our age who believe like you don't bother calling themselves Catholic."

    While this Catholic exodus is an enormous tragedy in its own right, it's at least removed the obstacles to the Church's healing process.

  2. Its sad. I don't know the exact quote, but our Holy Father said something to the effect of what the writer of that article was saying, only he was referring to what happened when nearly all the symbolism and beautiful language was lost in the liturgy after Vatican II. My parents generation seemed to get the idea that if anything goes, why stay here (in the Church)? I hope that the new translation comes with a disclaimer saying, "WARNING: WHAT YOU ARE ABOUT TO READ MAY INSPIRE A DEEPER LOVE FOR THE MASS."

  3. What goes around, comes around!

    About time all of this was corrected, I say.

  4. Patrick, I love this weeks "theme" with Shoes being on other Feet~ Keep up the Good Work you do my dear Apologist!~

  5. What sanctimonious drivel!

    Does anyone seriously believe that the people spearheading this care a lick about the prayer lives of the "People of God"? I pray that they discover the true meaning of liturgical prayer, which cannot be reduced to a sickly-sweet emotionalism and horizontalism.

    Let's be done with the liturginistas - left-leaning political hacks masquerading as liturgists.

  6. I love the joke I heard from a Tim Staples speech (I don't think he claims credit for it):

    Q: What's the difference between a terrorist and a liturgist?
    A: You can negotiate with a terrorist!

    Bring on the new translation!

  7. Thanks be to God for this new translation! Dioceses need to start teaching and preparing priests and deacons so that they can, in turn, teach and prepare their flocks. If you could help get the word out about my book on the new English translation, I think people might stop overreacting about the whole thing!

  8. Do we really have to wait that long! Well, it will be worth the wait. I just wonder what is going to happen to all of that awe inspiring music composed for the Mass parts. Will new, better Mass parts be composed? Will we use Latin in the meantime? Will the St. Louis Jesuits stage a demonstration? Who will have the copyright? When will the Liturgy of the Hours get a new translation? Will this cause many to re-examine the word sthey are praying?

  9. I think we get so worked up about liturgy sometimes, I hope it's not to the detriment of focusing on the Lord. I listen to you and Tim Staples and the others on CAL sometimes and some of the questions are like "The priest's shoe was untied while he said the Eucharistic Prayer, is the consecration still valid?" I mean I am exaggerating but not by much. I guess since I am just 18 I don't know about Vatican 2 and such, but when I am at Mass I don't worry that much about if this word is changed to that word. Christ is there and He never changes.

  10. "Why don't we wait?" We have waited - for 4 decades. Bring us the authentic meaning of the sacred liturgy rather than social/political newspeak. "..from dissenting 'experts'.. libera nos Domine!"

  11. scrambledmegzntoast, you remind me of me, except I was 18 in 1964, and my faith was formed within in the 1950s.
    When I manage to not be distracted, the Mass begins for me when I walk thru the big doors, and look ahead to HIS holy presence in the tabernacle
    and realize HIS delight is to be with me. All these years later, and that thought still amazes me, and that heaven will soon come down to earth!
    I got thru Vatican 2 like this and doubt these slight changes will matter,
    as long as the words of Consecration aren't changed.

  12. For your information, Archbishop Mark Coleridge has recently started an online forum regarding the new Roman Missal. The audio and the text of his talk are also available. See http://community.catholiclife.org.au/group/mr3thenewliturgy