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Wednesday 28 September 2011

Considering the GIRM II: Posture for Holy Communion

Some may think that standing for Holy Communion began with the promulgation of the Novus Ordo Missae in 1970. For those of us over 50, the Novus Ordo is the "New, New Mass." We had the "New Mass" -the 1965 Roman Missal and it was then that standing began, though Holy Communion was still on the tongue and patens were still used. It was considered a vile abuse in Holland and Belgium where experimentation gave way to the almost universal dissent of commuion-in-the-hand prompting Pope Paul VI to issue Memoriale Domini which was promptly ignored and which he was too weak to enforce.
It was not long after this, and certainly even before 1970, that Communion Rails - the last remaining part of the Rood in the West, which in the Byzantine is the Iconostasis and in the Syriac the Veil, were by and large, removed and some rather sadly and unceremoniously ending up as parking curbs.

Truly, the Byzantine and Syriac manner of receiving the Eucharist is standing. In fact, they don't kneel at all in the Divine Liturgy or Qurbono as it is known in the Syriac Church.  It was in the west that kneeling became the norm as a response to heresy and doubt in the Real Presence - not so much a problem in either Eastern Churches. Along with this destruction of Communion Rails of course came the Magdalene moment of searching for the Tabernacle. It was a debate between the "dynamic" verses the "static" presence. We simple Catholics knew nothing of dynamic or static, only Real.

This debate still rages, though it is changing for the better as the generation that did all this dies off. They left few children literally or spiritually and in a decade's time they will be all be gone to their particular judgement or resting in nursing homes. It will be up to us to ensure that they are not euthanised even though they did not fight the early fight against the slaughter of the innocents as they were too busy with coke and pizza Masses. The churches will be emptier but they will be filled with Catholics who will strive for something better and they will be filled with fewer but holier and zealous young priests that are not masculine and not emasculated.

The facts are that no order from the Second Vatican Council ever provided for Communion Rails to be ripped out or Tabernacles to be displaced. This came later by "expert liturgists." Official documents referred to new constructioin and in fact, architectural or artistic significance was to be retained.

However, keeping these rails or barriers, as these experts would claim would have prevented the universal adoption of standing for Holy Communion and create a barrier to the Table. Despite this, individual Catholics chose to reject this posture and in its wisdom, Holy Mother Church issued a document called Redemptions Sacramentum in which, the Communicants right to not only receive communion kneeling was enshrined but the restating that Communion-on-the-tongue is the norm and always remains the universal law of the Church, notwithstanding what individula Ordinaries did in my town during SARS or H1N1. They were wrong, I said it then and I repeat it now, both of them.

So, what does the GIRM for Canada and other countries say?

160. The Priest then takes the paten or ciborium and approaches the communicants,  who usually come up in procession.
It is not permitted for the faithful to take the consecrated Bread or the sacred chalice by themselves and, still less, to hand them on from one to another among themselves. In the Dioceses of Canada, Holy Communion is to be received standing, though individual members of the faithful may choose to receive Communion while kneeling. When standing before the minister to receive Holy Communion, the faithful should make a simple bow of the head. When receiving Holy Communion on the tongue, they reverently join their hands; when receiving Holy Communion in the hand, they reverently open their hands placing one beneath the other, and they consume the host immediately upon receiving it.

Did you read that?

In Canada, the norm is standing as we know, but "individual members of the faithful may choose to receive Communion while kneeling!"

A few other points in the paragraph above. "It is not permitted for the faithful to take the consecrated Bread or the sacred chalice by themselves and, still less, to hand them on from one to another among themselves." If you do this, stop. If you see it being done, file a complaint and refer to the paragraph in the GIRM.

Note this too: "When standing before the minister to receive Holy Communion, the faithful should make a simple bow of the head."

And this: "When receiving Holy Communion on the tongue, they reverently join their hands; when receiving Holy Communion in the hand, they reverently open their hands placing one beneath the other, and they consume the host immediately upon receiving it." This is so the Priest, or Deacon or EMHC if absolutely necessary knows how to approach you with the Host. But also be aware, you are to place one hand beneath the other (as a throne) and you "consume the host immediately upon receiving it" you do not walk away and pop Him in your mouth as if He is a nacho chip. You bring your hands to your mouth!

Of course, you should simply receive on the tongue and then all the EMHC would go away because they find it repulsive.

So, in the matter of kneeling for Holy Communion; unless the church has a communion rail which they promote and utilise and you are in the McDonald's line, then let common sense and charity prevail. If you choose to avail yourself of your right granted to you by Holy Mother Church do so at the end of the line anbe d humble about it.

But know this!

The priest cannot refuse you and the bishop cannot drag you to your feet nor can he have you arrested.

Now, you don't have to pay attention to me, but you might want to watch what the man who some day could be the first Pope from America has to say...or then again, it might be a bishop from Kazakhstan who has called for a new Syllabus of Errors.

Friends, every Catholic needs to read and study the GIRM.

Spread the Good News!

Considering the GIRM I: The Kyrie

In the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite the Kyrie is considered to be "nine-fold" that is three times Kyrie eleison, three times Christe eleison and three times Kyrie eleison. There are two times in the Roman Rite, Extraordinary and Ordinary that the people can proclaim in Greek, the other is on Good Friday with the Trisagion, Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, Hagios O Theos, Hagios Ischyros, Hagios Athanatos. This dear readers, is in Greek and is in the Graduale Romanum 1974 for the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite.

But, back to our Kyrie and the nine-fold.

The fabricators (a descriptive used in the Spirit of the Liturgy by Pope Benedict XVI) of the Novus Ordo Missae cut this to a simple response "six-fold." In doing so, they eliminated the awesome mystery of this penitential beseeching in its Trinitarian formula of three for the Three Persons of the Most Holy Trinity and the symbolism of the chanting of the Nine Choirs of Angels.

Consistently then, the result has been that "Gregorian" Kyries were modified as six-fold. But this was not always necessary. In fact, some of them cannot be done in six-fold as they were musically composed as nine-fold, they were not simple repetitions, for example the Kyrie from Missa Cum Jubilo, Mass IX. The former GIRM permitted this. In fact, the previously referred to Graduale Romanum for the Novus Ordo published in 1974 included this Kyrie. If it was not meant to be sung nine-fold, why as it included? For your information, the signatory in the GM was Archbishop Annibale Bugnini, the lead "fabricator!"

Let us look at what the new GIRM approved for use in Canada and elsewhere states with the point to which I wish to draw your attention in bold:

The Kyrie Eleison

52.       After the Penitential Act, the Kyrie, eleison (Lord, have mercy), is always begun, unless it has already been part of the Penitential Act. Since it is a chant by which the faithful acclaim the Lord and implore his mercy, it is usually executed by everyone, that is to say, with the people and the choir or cantor taking part in it.

            Each acclamation is usually pronounced twice, though it is not to be excluded that it be repeated several times, by reason of the character of the various languages, as well as of the artistry of the music or of other circumstances. When the Kyrie is sung as a part of the Penitential Act, a “trope” precedes each acclamation.

Now, let us be clear. In a Read Mass, the six-fold Kyrie is the Law of the Church and the GIRM is liturgical law. But if the Kyrie is sung in Greek or in English (as there were some fine ones composed for 1965), these can be freely done.

Here then, is the Kyrie from Missa Cum Jubilo, Gregorian Mass IX.

The opposite of laudable.

A priest friend working in the Vatican has written to me a few times on the matter of kneeling during the Canon of the Mass. In Rome at least, even at St. Peter's Basilica, kneeling is only at the Consecration. This is consistent with the 1975 GIRM. In Poland which he recently visited and opined that "Poland will save the Church yet" they kneel from the end of the Sanctus to the end of the Memorial Acclamation, a practice that was asked for by the Canadian bishops but not approved by Rome.

Some have suggested that this whole thread or topic is boring.

Meanwhile, a reader in beautiful Newfoundland writes:

I just finished attending an Archdiocesan meeting on the new GIRM and the Archbishop has stated in no uncertain terms that even in parishes where they had the "laudable" practice of kneeling from from the Sanctus to Communion it will not be allowed. There will only be kneeling at the Consecration.

If the GIRM says this:

In the dioceses of Canada, the faithful should kneel at the Consecration, except when prevented on occasion by ill health, or for reasons of lack of space, of the large number of people present, or for another reasonable cause.53 However, those who do not kneel ought to make a profound bow when the Priest genuflects after the Consecration. Where it is the practice for the people to remain kneeling after the Sanctus (Holy, Holy,Holy) until the end of the Eucharistic Prayer and before Communion when the Priest says Ecce Agnus Dei (This is the Lamb of God), it is laudable for this practice to be retained.

...then what does it mean if the practice is not "allowed?'

Is this important?

Is the corrected translation enough?

Will they ensure "sacred silence" with the same vigour?

Will the Archbishop of St. John's ensure that only "priests, deacons and instituted acolytes" preform the ritual ablutions...you know...doing the dishes?

And then there is this:

41. The main place should be given, all things being equal, to Gregorian chant, as  being proper to the Roman Liturgy. Other kinds of sacred music, in particular polyphony, are in no way excluded, provided that they correspond to the spirit of the liturgical action and that they foster the participation of all the faithful.
Since the faithful from different countries come together ever more frequently, it is desirable that they know how to sing together at least some parts of the Ordinary of the Mass in Latin, especially the Profession of Faith and the Lord’s Prayer, according to the simpler settings.


How we Communicate

If you' ve not visited Rorate Caeli blog to read this post by New Catholic, then please do and read the comment box.

Send it to your Catholic friends and especially to priests.

Here is a sample:

Translation problems? Mass celebrated towards the people? Altar girls? Postures?

No, the greatest and gravest problem of the liturgy of the Latin Church - that is, of the "Ordinary form", or Mass of Paul VI - is one that transcends all this, even it is related to all of them: it is the way the Body of Christ is treated. That must be the very first issued tackled by an eventual true "reform of the reform", one that is set not by fleeting example, but by hard law.

If you receive Holy Communion in the hand, stop and stop it now!

It was wrong for Paul VI to allow this abomination. He should have outlawed what was a vile abuse and now you are participating in it.

Stop it now!

Sunday 25 September 2011

Not one penny!

With a "hat tip" to Mike for finding the post below -- More Idiocy from a Canadian Bishop -- on a reader or something, I have reposted it below. I had deleted it without intending to do so when cleaning up a few drafts.

The good Father in New Brunswick does not deserve this treatment at the hands of the Bishop of Bathurst.

...and speaking of bishops.

Today, at your church, there will be a second collection for the "Bishops of Canada." This collection goes to your diocese to offset the "tax" which the diocese (you) pays to the CCCB. If there is a shortage the diocese pays the total anyway.

So, why should we pay anything for the CCCB? They have set up another "hierarchy" between the Ordinary and the Pope and we have seen the results. No, not one penny for the CCCB and their Development and Peace or their not "too hard" Gloria.

Not one penny.

More idiocy from a Canadian Bishop!

by Vox Cantoris

For once, I am speechless.

BATHURST, New Brunswick, September 22, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Catholic Diocese of Bathurst, New Brunswick has removed an elderly priest from active ministry after he caused a storm of controversy by denouncing homosexuality, cohabitation, and abortion in an August homily.

85-year-old Fr. Donat Gionet had retired to his home town of Caraquet in June to serve palliative care patients, and now laments that in his declining years he is being forced to celebrate Mass “in secret.”

Fr. Wesley Wade, the diocese’s vicar general, told Radio-Canada that Fr. Gionet’s comments were consistent with Church teaching, but lacked the proper “pastoral” sensitivity.

Read it all, here.

Here is the bishop's contact information:

Most Rev. (not in my mind!) Valéry Vienneau, Bishop of Bathurst
645, avenue Murray
C.P. 460
Bathurst, NB E2A 3Z4
Tel: (506) 546-1420
Fax: (506) 548-5565
E-mail: valeryv@nb.aibn.com

Saturday 10 September 2011

The GIRM for Canada!

Finally, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops has announced and made available, the GIRM for Canada 

Over the next few weeks, I will be providing important sections of the GIRM, the General Instruction on the Roman Missal here and my commentary. I profess no authority other than that of a Catholic layman educated in these matters. These posts will be presented here to assist you in understanding the GIRM in order to better appreciate the beauty of the liturgy and this new Missal for the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite. These posts are also intended to clarify issues that have been discussed here and which you may need in your parish to educated your friends and unfortunately, your Pastor, as the combox clearly reveals. As I said to Charlie Lewis in the National Post interview, "the better the liturgy, the better the prayer, the better the Catholic."

Given that this blog made such a noise about the kneeling posture, it is fitting that this controversy be discussed first. This writer began a series of posts on the matter of the "kneeling posture" last winter. It was a result of an investigation for the delay of the Recognitio for the Third Edition of the Roman Missal and its corresponding GIRM--General Instruction (on the Roman Missal.). The Bishops' Conferences in the Great Britain and the United States had already announced implementation for the first Sundays in September and Advent, respectively. There web pages and catechetical materials were already well-developed, but in Canada there was nothing; silence, priests knew little if anything and the people knew even less.

My investigation revealed two things; the web page of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops indicated that there would be no new GIRM for Canada until the "French" equivalent was completed (the Missal could not be implemented without the GIRM); and the knowledge from a priest friend that "they want you off your knees!'

My letter of inquiry as to the reason for the delay of the Recognitio from Rome to the General Secretary of the CCCB, Msgr. Patrick Powers was answered with the referral to a six month old blog post which I had already referred to in my letter to him and a perplexity as to what the delay in Rome could be. Further letters which included my suspicion and made it clear that this writer was not going away extracted more information including that a meeting would be held which he and the CCCB President would attend with the Congregation of Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments and that they would express "my concern" over the delay and that there was "nothing out of the ordinary" in the Canadian request. Well then, why the delay?

Around the same time, my suspicions that the kneeling issue was the reason for the hold up was confirmed when I received a copy of the actual page of the "Grey Book" (submission of the CCCB to Rome for Recognitio.)

There was the proof; the norm for kneeling in Canada would be from the end of the Sanctus to the end of the Memorial Acclamation. Bishops could instruct kneeling only at the Consecration (as per the 1975 GIRM) and where the practice of kneeling from the end of the Sanctus to the end of the Doxology and then at the Ecce Agnus Dei, it is "laudable to retain this practice." With this evidence, the CCCB finally admitted that the reason for the delay was indeed the disagreement in kneeling posture which was significantly different from that approved for Britain and America. However, I did not stop there. My research was taken up by a priest who would know whether it was legitimate or not. It was deemed credible and it was presented to a senior official in the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments. The assurance was given; it would be further placed in "friendly hands" this would not be approved without further study at CDWDS as they agreed that the Canadian submission would result in less kneeling and stress and controvesy and the message was sent; "Canada needs more kneeling, not less!'

So what now is the kneeling posture for Canada:

43.     The faithful should stand from the beginning of the Entrance chant, or while the Priest approaches the altar, until the end of the Collect; for the Alleluia chant before the Gospel; while the Gospel itself is proclaimed; during the Profession of Faith and the Universal Prayer; and from the invitation, Orate, fratres (Pray, brethren), before the Prayer over the Offerings until the end of Mass, except at the places indicated here below.

          The faithful should sit, on the other hand, during the readings before the Gospel and the Responsorial Psalm and for the Homily and during the Preparation of the Gifts at the Offertory; and, if appropriate, during the period of sacred silence after Communion.

          In the dioceses of Canada, the faithful should kneel at the Consecration, except  when prevented on occasion by ill health, or for reasons of lack of space, of the large number of people present, or for another reasonable cause.53 However, those who do not kneel ought to make a profound bow when the Priest genuflects after the Consecration. Where it is the practice for the people to remain kneeling after the Sanctus (Holy, Holy,Holy) until the end of the Eucharistic Prayer and before Communion when the Priest says Ecce Agnus Dei (This is the Lamb of God), it is laudable for this practice to be retained.  

         For the sake of uniformity in gestures and bodily postures during one and the same celebration, the faithful should follow the instructions which the Deacon, a lay minister, or the Priest gives, according to what is laid down in the Missal.
The rule for Canada now is consistent with the 1975 GIRM, kneeling is at the Consecration. Yet, in many parts of Canada this was never enacted. Tradition and popular piety held sway in many places for decades following the implementation of the Novus Ordo Missae and the laudable "practice' is in place in much of Canada. Where the expert liturgists could, they pushed their agenda and got many in the Maritimes, Quebec and Alberta and Manitoba off of their knees. Some initiated a compromise from end of the Sanctus to the end of the Memorial Acclamation and the Bishops of Canada wanted all three enshrined.

On this, the three variants for Canada, Rome declined and the GIRM is as above with some change in the word order that seems to be firmer. The Canadian submission was "it is laudable to retain this practice" and what was approved was "it is laudable for this practice to be retained."

While one might desire that one uniform posture, and if you read this blog you probably agree with me that it should be the most traditional manner, we now have uniformity and clarity, something lacked for decades. It is possible that in some places with the kneeling currently ending at the Memorial Acclamation they may simply extend the kneeling, but at least in one diocese according to the combox, this will not be the case, it will be only at the Consecration, a step backwards.

Rome clearly did not want to see an innovation or establish a precedent. Nowhere in the world was this Canadian third-way and compromise in place and it would not be now. Given that even in St. Peter's Basilica, kneeling or a profound bow (at the hips) is in place at the Consecration, we in Canada could hardly argue.

Now, I wish to address a note in the combox from a reader in the Diocese of London:
Interestingly, although this instruction mentions it as being laudable for the congregation to remain kneeling from the Sanctus to the end of the Cannon; this has been the practice in the Diocese of London in all of my 40 plus years.Until today.At the Vigil Mass this evening (Sept 10th) in my parish today, the Priest Celebrating the Mass, required the congregation to stand immediately AFTER the Consecration.This was something new and perhaps, the thin end of the wedge ? Has anyone else in this part of SW Ontario experienced anything similar? Are we being set-up here ?
Yes, you are being set-up and it is up to you to do something about it. The difference between you and me and our parents and our grandparents is we know! We know the truth because you've read it above and if you don't believe me you can go to the link and read it yourself because you are a grown-up Catholic now.

The Diocese of London has always followed the "laudable practice" and the Bishop of London has not changed this. There should be uniformity across a diocese, this priest has engaged in a a liturgical abuse and is being creative.

First, the GIRM does not take affect until the First Sunday of Advent, so, the priest was simply wrong to instruct you last night to stand to do this. He is being disobedient to the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, on this, there is no doubt. You have the right (under Redemptionis Sacramentum) to raise this error with  him and to his bishop.

Second, the Diocese of London has indeed followed the "laudable practice." This priest, if he has read the GIRM, has not read all of paragraph 43. Let us look again what it says, "..it is a laudable for this practice to be retained." What does this mean? Laudable comes from Latin and it means, "praiseworthy". Think here of Magna cum laude (With great praise) or Laudate Dominum (Priaise the LORD) or Lauda Sion (Praise O Sion). If to do something, in this case kneeling, is "praiseworthy" what does it mean not to do it? 

Each of us has the right to expect the proper implementation of this long-awaited Missal. We have the right and responsibility to act and to inform. In many places it will be up to you and me; those who Bishop Trautman of Erie called dismissively, "John and Mary Catholic" who would be too simple-mined to understand words such as "ineffable" or "gibbet" in the corrected translation, to ensure that the Missal is properly implemented. It should not be that way, but sadly, the "spirit of Vatican II" still reigns in many dioceses and in many parishes.

What will you do?

Wednesday 7 September 2011

CCCB FAQ's -- More Drivel!

Alerted by an erudite reader we find these interesting FAQ's from the CCCB.

Let's have a look and a comment or two, shall we?

What is the date of implementation for the new edition of the Roman Missal?
The date of implementation of the new Missal will be the first Sunday of Advent 2011. The publications team here at the CCCB have done some remarkable work these past few months to make this possible. (Yes, only after they were told in February by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments that they had no choice. They were trying to wait until a new "French" Roman Missal was complete as that was considered more important than our unity in the ROC (Rest of Canada) with the English-speaking world.)

Will the responses be the same as in the United States?
The responses at the Eucharist (Holy Sacrifice of the Mass,) will be the same for the entire English-speaking world, although we will have the proper Canadian spelling of some of the words. We are happy to report that you will be able to have your own copy of them by March - they will be published as part of Celebrate in Song, our new music and liturgy resource which is designed to supplement CBW III (Which we are still stuck with inclusive  language and all forced upon the unsuspecting Church in Canada by Raymond Lahey whose name is enshrined in every book, in every parish, in every pew as to a joyous reminder of the contribution of this "kind and gentle pastor.") in the era of the new Missal. Not only will we have the new responses, we will have three musical settings of the responses which we have commissioned by us for use in Canada. They are by Canadian composers (Which are the most detestable example of church music I've ever heard.) and it is my hope that they will become fairly standard in parishes (I doubt it, not even my Praise and Worship friends are that stupid--go ahead, ask as church musician what he or she really thinks of the garbage parishes are forced to pay for.) across the country. This way we will be able to feel at home in each others' churches. The chant setting from ICEL is also included for the same reason. (Well this is simply not true, they have not used the Gloria from the chant setting by ICEL which is to appear in ALL hymnbooks because Father Bill Burke deemed it "too hard" in a letter to me.)

What should parishes do to prepare for the new edition of the Roman Missal?

Fr. Burke of the National Liturgy Office (NLO) has been working tirelessly to prepare the clergy of the country for the new edition of the Roman Missal. He has done workshops from coast to coast to coast. It is our hope that the local clergy and diocesan offices will take a prominent role in the implementation process in our churches and schools, and so this training has been a huge part of the NLO strategy around the Missal. For your parish, consider the following:

A DVD with a teaching Mass has been approved for publication and should be available by the Fall. This could form part of an information evening held by parishes or deaneries

Fr. Bill’s workshop will form part of one of the catechetical resource DVD’s that we are preparing, and can be used in the same way

Music ministers: (There is no such thing as a "Music Minister" and this term needs to stop being used -- we are Directors of Music, Choir Directors or Schola Masters) cantors, organists, instrumentalists of all kinds, choirs, should start learning our new Canadian Mass settings in Celebrate in Song

In addition there are several other resources:

NLO has entered into an agreement with Novalis to prepare a Missal resource for youth which will be a unique resource for young people to learn about the Mass. ('cause they need to be patronised and talked down to, right?)

For all Catholics the Publications Service has published the ICEL resource, Become One Body One Spirit in Christ, which will help everyone better understand the new edition. (Yes, the Brits did this and they are so far ahead of us it is embarrassing to say nothing about the Americans.)

For priests, the Publications Service has made an agreement with World Library Publications to distribute a CD recording of the new translations of Eucharistic Prayers I-IV

All of these can help us to prepare for the new edition of the Roman Missal in our own communities.

I heard that there is a new translation of the Mass that is coming out. Is that true?

Yes, it is indeed true. Even though we often look to the Church for stability in this rapidly changing world, and although it’s not always easy to accept, the Church’s prayer and worship have also changed over time.

Following many years of work and consultations (see the following question for details), changes have been made to the Mass and its translation. As we are now at the point where we need to get ready to receive this new translation, a series of questions and answers will be presented in the next few months to offer a better understanding of the changes and to prepare for them.

Change is rarely easy (Well, ya sure didn't care about the change our parents and grandparents had to endure which they didn't ask for) and it doesn’t happen automatically. You might find the upcoming changes challenging. However, we invite everyone to accompany us in this series of articles with an open mind and an open heart. Let us ask the Holy Spirit to guide us and . . . together, let us enter into the dance! (Dance? Let us enter the dance? Who actually writes this stuff?)

Why are we getting a new translation?

In the 1960's, as the bishops of the world met for the Second Vatican Council, they called for a major revision of the rites of the Mass and opened the door to the celebration of Mass in the many languages used around the world. (Actually, in Sacrosanctam Concilium they said that no changes could be made unless it was for the good of the faithful; there were eleven requests made and all of these except one, the new Lectionary with its three year-cycle, were implemented by 1965. (Google Vox Cantoris 1965 Missal). The Novus Ordo Missae was never, ever imagined or contemplated by the Father of the Council. They asked for a minor "simplification of the rubrics" already underway by 1962 and an end to "repetitions" mostly in place by 1965. They never asked for a chopping or re-writing of Collects and Postcommunions or a virtual elimination of Propers or multiple options of Pentitential Rites or Canons (Eucharistic Prayers), these were all "manufactured" as affirmed by Pope Benedict XVI in The Spirit of the Liturgy. As for the vernacular languages, this was for those parts concerning the people, the Collects and Readings. Go ahead...look it up.)

In the years that followed, much work went into those revisions. The translation of Mass texts from Latin to all those languages proved to be a major task. (Again, this is not true and it is simplistic and grossly misleading. We always had a translation in our Missals. In 1965 we had a complete and approved English translation faithful to the Latin.) As time was pressing and it was important to make those translations available as soon as possible, a first translation was prepared, which did not pretend to be either perfect or permanent. (We already had a translation in 1965 of the 1570/1962 Roman Missal. They sure pretended that it was perfect and they used a method called "dynamic equivalence" to do it and they convinced a battered Pope to agree with it.) In February 1974 the first English translation for use in Canada was approved. (Yes, finally there was an approved "Sacramentary" in 1974 and from 1969 until then they used binders on the Altar and made it up as they went along).

Eventually, work began on a number of additions to the Mass and revisions to the translations. In 2001 new directions in the translation of texts from Latin were established by the Church and in March 2002, a new edition of the Order of Mass in Latin was published. (Yes, and ordered by Blessed John Paul II!)

Since then, great strides have been made to prepare faithful translations, to get the proper approvals and to make them available to all English speaking people in a timely fashion. (Eleven years is timely) Therefore, in the near future those changes will be implemented.

How will the new translation affect me?

When the new translation of the Mass comes about, it will affect all of us, although in different ways. Priests and deacons will need to adapt to the revised texts - some texts contain very subtle differences while others have been modified considerably. Therefore, everyone will need to listen so much more carefully and to hear differently. (And it will help you pray better and understand the Mass better and receive more grace because of it and therefore be a better Catholic, a better person and you will have a stronger family and build a better world; as Father Z says, "liturgy is the tip of the spear.")

Members of the assembly (Congregation!) will need to learn new or modified responses. This requires practice and patience. Music used during Mass (i.e.: “Glory to God”, “Holy, Holy”, etc.) will need to be adapted to the new texts, requiring that we learn new music. (And the Memorial Acclamation, so why force new Lamb of God and Kyrie's on people and frankly, the Somerville, Togni and Proulx Masses were all written for 1965 "hosts" and had to be adapted for 1970, so we can go back to the originals.)

Moreover, changes being brought to the Mass are not limited to spoken or sung texts. They also touch some actions and postures during the Mass. Therefore, we will need to learn them and the times during the Mass where they occur. (Yes, we will stand as soon as the priest says; "Pray brethern (brothers and sisters)" but the CCCB still wants to amend the kneeling posture and make it different from the U.S., Britain, Ontario, B.C. and the most traditional form but since they have not yet released the GIRM, we don't know what Rome has or has not approved.)

Where does the new translation come from?

Official texts of the Mass are promulgated by the “Holy See” (the official authority of the Roman Catholic Church). (Damn near spilt my coffee on that one.) A Latin edition (editio typica) is prepared and published under the title Missale Romanum (Sacramentary or Roman Missal in English). (No! Missale Romanum means Roman Missal, not Sacramentary--sorry, you'll have to have ROMAN on the cover this time girls.)

Then, the Conference of Bishops of each country (or group of countries) in the world is responsible to prepare proper translations in the language(s) used in its country and to get them approved by the Holy See. Usually, a team of experts and bishops from various countries using the same language work together on such an enormous task. The International Committee on English in the Liturgy (usually referred to as ICEL) is responsible for the English translations. (And they did a fine job) All the bishops of participating countries then get to critique, modify and approve that work. (And they've delayed and delayed and delayed it and some, such as Bishop Trautman of Erie, have fought it.) Each Conference of Bishops also prepares a certain number of local adaptations as required by the Holy See or as requested by the bishops. Then, each Conference of Bishops must approve the translations and adaptations for use in its country/region, and present them to the Holy See for final approval. (There are certain Saints for example, not on the Universal Calendar but who pertain to a country or region.)
These steps led to the new Mass translation that we will be getting.

Do we have to use the new translations?

This kind of question is always hard to answer! A hard-line answer would simply be: “Of course we have to!” (DUH, YES, THAT IS THE ANSWER!) However, we are invited to enter into the spirit of the law and not only its letter. (AND WHAT SPIRIT MIGHT THAT BE?)

The changes being brought to the Mass apply to Roman Catholics around the world. Although the number and the nature of the changes will differ from one language to another, (No this is not true. All national conferences through their ICEL equivalents must conform to the THIRD TYPICAL EDITION and be translated in accordance with LITURGIAM AUTHENTICUM. Because English is the new "LINGUA FRANCA" and it is from English that many other translations are made the English must be particularly correct and accurate. This was mandated by the "OFFICIAL AUTHORITY..") in all of this we need to be aware that the intention stems from a constant concern to maintain the unity of our faith and worship within the whole Church. Yet, there remains a provision for creativity and adaptations which require a spirit that respects the whole celebration and the universality of the Church. Unity doesn’t always involve uniformity, but does require concerted effort and a common heart.

Are we going back to Latin?

The vernacular will most certainly continue to be used as the language of worship as established by the Second Vatican Council (No; Wrong again! Latin is and remains the first language of choice for the Mass. The Novus Ordo Missae of 1970 can always be celebrated in Latin. The Mass, celebrated in the vernacular can always have Latin Gregorian music or polyphonic motets or hymns in Latin -- why do they continue to mislead?) and reaffirmed by the NEW General Instruction of the Roman Missal. The Preamble to GIRM (2008) states in paragraph 12: “The eagerness with which this measure (use of the vernacular) was everywhere received has certainly been so great that it has led under the guidance of the Bishops and the Apostolic See itself, to permission for all liturgical celebrations in which the people participate to be in the vernacular, so that the people may more fully participate. SACROSANCTAM CONCILIUM, THE CONSTITUTION ON THE SACRED LITURGY AT THE SECOND VATICAN COUNCIL STATED THAT "LATIN IS TO BE PRESERVED" THAT THE "VERNACULAR, MAY BE USED "AND THAT "GREGORIAN CHANT HAS PRIDE OF PLACE."

Who initiated the change of translation?

In response to concerns expressed by local Bishops’ Conferences, the Congregation for Divine Worship initiated a period of study and reflection upon the current translations being used throughout the universal church. (Again, this is not true. ICEL was instructed by its members, the English speaking Bishops' Conferences, to prepare a new translation because they fundamentally new of the problems. This was completed in 1988 and rejected by the  "OFFICIAL AUTHORITY." It was rejected for two reasons; First, it was still not an adequate translation; and second, the Holy Father knew he was going to promulgate a new Edition and instruct then on how it was to be translated.) This period resulted in the document entitled Liturgiam Authenticum (2001) in which specific guidelines were established for all future translations from Latin to the vernacular.

The International Commission for English in the Liturgy (ICEL) in collaboration with the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, following a long period of intense study and reflection, established a General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) and the resulting new translation of the Ordo Missae (Order of Mass) for the Canadian Church. (There is no "Canadian Church" there is the Church in Canada!) These documents were then submitted to the Congregation of Divine Worship for approval.

I thought they were done with changes!!! Why more changes now?

In the years following the Second Vatican Council, the urgency with which texts had to be translated from Latin to the vernacular languages resulted in new texts that did not always convey the full meaning of the original Latin text and omitted some very rich scriptural and patristic images.(Yes, this is true but it had nothing to do with "urgency." (This is grossly misleading and I'm tired of hearing it, it was a conspiracy to change the meaning...why else would you translate "pro multis" which means "for many" as "for all" when the Latin expression "for all" exists and it is "pro omnibus!" It was a zeitgeist that harmed our belief and the truth of Our LORD's words in scripture.) Consequently, certain key responses and prayers have now been re-translated to better express a clearer understanding of the original text. This has resulted in a new Roman Missal (Ordo Missae) (Ordo Missae means Order of Mass.-- who wrote this??? ) which is to be used during all liturgical celebrations in the Roman Rite.

The changes initiated by the Second Vatican Council are on-going. Therefore, in a Church that is alive with the Holy Spirit, we can expect that the process of change will always be present.

Copyright © 2011 Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops
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Now you know why bloggers are necessary.

You're welcome.

More on the CCCB Gloria Chant "lite" Missal Mess

Thanks to a link from a series of comments on The Chant Cafe about the wretched Mass settings which we will be experiencing in Celebrate in Song we find this written about the Altar Missal:
For the chant setting of the Mass we have used the same settings as found in Celebrate in Song. These settings, specially the Glory to God in the highest and the Creed have been the most commonly used chant settings in Canada for a long time, so it seemed wise to keep them. The preface dialogue will probably sound new to Canadian ears, but it has been provided by ICEL and is a traditional form, just not the one we have been used to.
I've been in church music for over 25 years and never heard that Anonymous "chant" Gloria sung before. I'm old enough to remember the 1965 Missal and I don't recall it. We sang Somerville and one other, there was no "chant-like" or "lite" version then.

So, not only does the Father Bill Burke, Msgr. Murray Kroetch and Msgr. Powers think you're too stupid to learn the actual Roman Missal Gloria, they think that our priests are too stupid two!

Yes, Canada's expert liturgist wrote me to say that the National Liturgical Commission felt that the right Gloria was "too hard."

How did they get away with this?

Oh, the same way that they got away with the Winnipeg Statement and the NRSV Lectionary.

They dissented.

And where's the GIRM?

Monday 5 September 2011

Run out of Town

My good friend Bear over at The Spirit's Sword has written a wonderful essay on the history of the Church in the Archdiocese of Toronto. Bear also has a fascination for old churches in Ontario and has been for a few posts now highlighting some.

He has posted an old link to a story about the wonderful Church of Our Lady in Guelph and how it was almost wreckovated, "Vosko'd" if you will pardon the expression; as told by Paul Likoudis and originally published in Challenge Magazine.

Parishioners of the historic Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate in Guelph (Hamilton Diocese, Canada), known commonly as "the cathedral," rallied earlier this year to stop a drastic plan to alter the awe-inspiring interior of their magnificent church. 

Father Richard Vosko, a priest of the American diocese of Albany (New York State), who had proposed the radical plan to remove the church's marble communion rail, confessionals, high altar and rearrange the pews, was still paid $60,000 for his plan to wreck the church's interior; but, parishioners will enjoy - at least for the foreseeable future - worshipping God in the magnificent surroundings crafted by their ancestors.

On Saturday, 13 March 1999, the parish priest, Monsignor John Newstead, informed parishioners that, after consultation with Bishop Anthony Tonnos of Hamilton, Fr Vosko's plan would not go forward because of overwhelming opposition by parishioners.

The Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate is an enormous neo- Gothic, twin-towered church modelled after the Cathedral of the Three Kings in Cologne, built by parishioners at the turn of the century of stone cut from local quarries.

"Basically what happened," said a parishioner active in the effort to block the 'renovation,' "is that we prevailed because we did our homework and Fr Vosko didn't. We told him that if everything was wrong, why didn't anybody tell us this for 30 years."

The parishioners' experience with Fr Vosko and his plans for the Church of Our Lady mirrors that of many other North American churches.

In the mid-1990s, Guelph's parishioners were advised that the church's leaking roof had reached such a stage of disrepair that a major renovation of the roof was in order, which was estimated to cost approximately $3 million.

Parishioners understood the importance of the work, and began fund-raising and sacrificial giving on the part of many. However, before that fund-raising period was completed, Monsignor John Newstead announced his plan to "restore the interior." "People thought 'restoration' meant restoration," a parishioner said, "that dilapidated and worn out material would be replaced."


Then, in May of last year, Monsignor Newstead informed parishioners that the Church of Our Lady had contracted with Albany priest, Fr Richard Vosko, to come in and offer lectures and advice on how to renovate the church. "That's when we learned there was more afoot than just freshening things up. Fr Vosko told us that, under Vatican II, the altar and its ornate surrounds were wrong and had to be removed; the altar rail should not be there; a recently-installed elevator to help access our handicapped people was in the wrong place; the altar itself had to come forward so no-one would be more than 60 feet from it; the baptismal font and confessionals were in the wrong places.

"He didn't even like the big heavy wooden doors with their huge iron hinges. He said they were most unwelcoming. What Fr Vosko didn't know is that these doors were very welcoming to us. Many of the parishioners came from lands where their parents and grandparents were persecuted for the faith, and those heavy doors were most welcoming because people knew they could find sanctuary in the church. Fr Vosko wanted to take those doors off."

As is often the case in other parishes where Fr Vosko works, parishioners are never informed in advance that Fr Vosko has been retained, the cost of his services, and how he is to be paid. "We were simply invited to attend workshops to hear some proposals," said the parishioner. "We were told the renovation process would be 'open.' We were told, 'It's your church. We want your opinion'."

In May 1998, Fr Vosko gave his first presentation, and then returned a month later to give an update, speaking each time to about 350 of the parish's 1,500 members. To most, Fr Vosko appeared arrogant, brash and insulting. "People were stunned and shocked by his presentation. Disbelief at his proposals was widespread. We couldn't believe a stranger would come into our church and tell us everything was wrong with it," said the parishioner.

As a result of those two meetings, upset parishioners began meeting on their own and formed a committee to oppose Fr Vosko's proposals, and eventually formed the Committee for the Preservation of the Interior of the Church of Our Lady, with eight parishioners taking the lead. The newly-formed preservation committee held a number of public meetings, and it soon became apparent that a sizeable majority of the parishioners opposed Fr Vosko's plans.

At one of the meetings, the group obtained 500 signatures on a petition to stop Fr Vosko's plan. Despite rising opposition, however, the "core committee" formed to ruin the church resisted popular reaction. The preservation committee made strenuous efforts to have a meeting with the "core committee," but were rebuffed repeatedly.

Finally, the preservation committee was able to meet with two members of the "core committee" to present their views, at which time they asked its co-chairmen to present the views of the preservationists to the full committee. The "core committee" members were reluctant. Still the preservationists persisted. Finally, after three months, the core co-chairs relented and allowed the preservationists to present their views.

Program dropped

At that meeting, the members of the "core committee" sat in stony silence, not once uttering any comment or acknowledgement, and the meeting adjourned. Time passed, and the preservationists asked for another meeting.

Just before Christmas 1998, the request for a second meeting was granted. At that subsequent meeting, the preservationists were given the "Vosko II" report, which detailed the changes approved for the church - despite the fact parishioners had been told repeatedly no decisions had been made.

"So we spent most of the Christmas period preparing a five-page brief in response," a member of the committee said. "We presented that in early January, and to this day, we have not received any comment.

"However, that doesn't matter. Subsequently, the preservation committee called a general meeting of the whole parish - including the "core committee" - and we outlined the entire procedure to date. The parishioners were vociferous in their response, and made it very clear they did not want Fr Vosko's proposed changes." After that 9 March meeting, parishioners were informed the following Saturday by Monsignor Newstead that he had discussed the matter with the bishop, and "in view of the divisiveness which had occurred, the program had been dropped in its entirety."

This report (here edited) originally appeared in the Canadian Catholic journal 'Challenge'.
Well, I just checked out the website of the good Father Vosko. The destruction on the Cathedrals of Milwaukee and Rochester is well known; even Rome tried to stop Rembert Weakland from the destruction (oh well, they couldn't stop him on anything else so this seems rather trite). There are almost 40 wreckovations listed. Let's see, he was paid $60,000 for doing nothing in Guelph, if he was paid $100,000 for doing something in these places, that's $4,000,000.00!

Not bad for a priestly career eh?