Thursday, November 29, 2012
THIS SUNDAY MARKS THE FIRST FULL YEAR OF OUR NEW AND GLORIOUS ENGLISH TRANSLATION, HOW DO YOU LIKE IT?
I predicted well before the start of the First Sunday of Advent last year that the new translation would be well received by the majority of rank and file Catholics. I also predicted that the only ones that would bitterly complain about it would be the clericalists in the Church which goes beyond the ordained to include academics, some of whom are the most "clericalist" in the world. Usually they whine about it because of authority issues and of course academics get all bent out of shape if their academic abilities or suggestions are called into question. Just watch "The Big Bang Theory" to learn that--art imitating life!
George Weigel pretty much sums up my sentiments when he writes, "It was just about a year ago that U.S. parishes began using the new translations of the third edition of the Roman Missal—an implementation process that seems to have gone far more smoothly than some anticipated. Wrinkles remain to be ironed out: There are precious few decent musical settings for the revised Ordinary of the Mass; the occasional celebrant (not infrequently with “S.J.” after his name) feels compelled to share his winsome personality with the congregation by ad-libbing the priestly greetings and prayers of the Mass. Some of the new texts themselves could have used another editorial rinsing, in my judgment. But in the main, the new translations are an immense improvement and seem to have been received as such."
One example of wording that I found interesting was last Sunday's Christ the King preface, which actually sounds better chanted than spoken "...the immensity of your majesty..." Is there a better way to say that in English? Or is that just fine? One could use this in a pejorative way in which to not so delicately call some one fat and in a derogatory way in the USA as it concerns "your majesty."
We learn from another survey by CARA that overall the new translation has been very well received by the majority of Catholics, even those who don't practice the faith regularly! Of course I could have told you that from my experience at St. Joseph Church, which is an eclectic group of parishioners--they've done marvelously well with the new translation and I haven't heard one complaint from an unusual source!
The most important paragraph of the CARA study is: "Catholics who attend Mass weekly are among the most likely to agree that the new translation of the Mass is a good thing. Eighty-four percent responded as such (47 percent “strongly” agree with this statement). By comparison, 63 percent of those who rarely or never attend Mass agree with this statement (only 4 percent “strongly” agree).
It shows that the majority of those who rarely or never attend Mass even think the new translation is a good thing. But if the majority of those who don't attend Mass thought it was a bad thing, should we give a flip? Folks, they don't attend Mass--they are not in full communion with the Church because of their mortal sin! If they die unrepentant, they go to hell and have the worst translation of their vernacular every day!
You can read the CARA survey results HERE.