the missal came…and no explosion

Three cheers to our pastor and choir. The new Roman Missal was introduced into our parish today with no fanfare. We were not burdened with lengthy explanations and rationalizations. A new mass setting was waiting for us in the pew, along with a card  of prayer responses. We stumbled over the first couple of `and with your spirits`, but by the end of mass everyone responded with one voice. The Eucharistic prayers were read carefully and slowly. I cringed at the dense wording and lengthy sentences, but others either weren`t perturbed or didn`t notice. Hubby said that he rather appreciated hearing things in a new way.

I appreciated the lack of fanfare. There was no nagging or correcting. The new translation was not praised as a great gift from on high. It was something that we had to do, and we got down and did it – graciously and simply.

So, is this it? We’ll see. It wasn’t an all out bomb. (At least not in my parish experience.) But I don’t think it’s a complete dud, either. For now, I’m happy that the new translation did not trump the liturgical beauty of this Advent season.

I would love to hear what your experiences were. What was it like in your parish today? How was the new missal introduced? How was it received?  




5 thoughts on “the missal came…and no explosion

  1. I’ve been following your blog for a while now, and have bitten my tongue over your posts on the new Roman Missal. As the music director in our small rural parish, and as one interested in liturgy in general, I have done a little research on the new translations and attended a couple of workshops on the implementation, and for the life of me, I couldn’t understand why you and others were getting so worked up! I for one was somewhat excited that it would perhaps stir a little interest in the liturgy, and make people think a bit about what they say and do at Mass. It seemed to me that the people introducing the changes in our parish were creating more worry than necessary, and that was borne out as our congregation readily and easily accepted those changes last night at our Saturday night Mass. I keep thinking about a story my mother-in-law once told me about her mother-in-law. This devout lady attended daily Mass, and when my mother-in-law asked her what she thought about the changes after Vatican II, she replied that it had nothing to do with her faith! I like her attitude!

  2. Hi Chandra. Thanks so much for following the blog. And, please, bite your tongue no longer! The purpose of this blog is to promote dialogue. I share my views with the hopes to nudge others to share their`s also.

    Like you, I`ve been following the news on the revised missal for a long time. Beyond the translation itself, it`s the process that has disheartened many; myself included.

    I have the deepest respect for our liturgists and music ministers. You, and our pastors, have had to do the hard work of introducing the new missal into our parish communities. We, too, are a small rural parish and our choir rose competently to the challenge.

    Thank you, again, for your comments. I do hope that you will continue to join in the dialogue. Advent peace and blessings!

  3. Our parishoners appeared very accepting of the changes…there were some giggles, the pastor was very gracious and had an exceptionally well rounded homily. He did skip over the Confetior (?) so I’m not sure how the suggested beating of the breasts will go…
    After Mass several of us go for coffee…the comments: “we needed something to wake us up”; “the choir was so “on top of everything” and of course, “what does consubstanial mean?”

    I believe it showed many of us how unecessary it was to project into the reasoning of its purpose. We certainly smiled more yesterday and personally, I became more aware of those around me. No one appeared uptight. More to come, I’m sure.

  4. I suppose I should be more understanding of the “good old boys” who brought us these changes (as well as the sexist language they contain) because the only authority they appear to have left is to make unnecessary changes to the prayers in the liturgy. This is not a real issue but it is a symptom of a bigger issue, the misuse of authority. Here is a quote from the Tablet that speaks to process:

    “This change is controversial; its theological justification is unclear and unpersuasive; for many it will cause pain. A Church that can stretch its provisions to accommodate the liturgical sensitivities of Tridentinists and of Ordinariate converts could surely give a little leeway to those who have been reasonably contented mainstream Catholics for the past generation and really do not see what was so drastically wrong with the Missal we had. Moreover, though Fr King is surely right at the level of theology to acquit the new version of “any systematic attempt … to roll back … the Second Vatican Council”, the case is not so clear at the level of process. The Vatican’s subversion of the collegial mechanisms that were operating quite satisfactorily for a revision of the 1973 text – the matter is authoritatively treated in Bishop Maurice Taylor’s memoir – raises serious questions about the appropriate exercise of authority and about the curia’s commitment to the reality of Vatican II. These questions won’t be dispelled by lame calls to unity and obedience”. (by Philip Endean SJ a Jesuit priest and a liturgical scholar.) Printed in “The Tablet – The International Catholic Weekly”.

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