Fr. David Tumback
SASKATOON — The revised translation of the Mass that takes effect in November will have several clearer allusions to Scripture, says the chair of the diocesan liturgy commission.
Karen Schreiner told recent workshops here that the new translation is closer to the Latin original and represents a perfect opportunity to deepen understanding about the liturgy in general.
"It is going to be wonderful for the people, when we begin to catechize, to explain," Schreiner said. "All that's asked of us is to enter into it with our heart and soul."
Schreiner walked through the changes in the prayers, acclamations and responses of the assembly, describing how Latin words and phrases are restored in the new translation.
For instance, when the presider says, "The Lord be with you," the response in English will be "and with your spirit," adhering to the Latin. That will bring the English response in line with other languages around the world, she noted, referring to a range of biblical references for the scripturally-based greeting.
In the Confiteor or "I confess," the original Latin wording of "through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault" has been restored — one of several "triads" found throughout the Mass, Schreiner said.
"It is stronger language, more colourful language," she said. The General Instruction of the Roman Missal will also again ask the assembly to strike the breast at this point — something that will be familiar to those who remember Mass in Latin.
In another instance, the scriptural roots of "Lord I am not worthy to receive you" will be clearer with the restoration of the words "under my roof," she described.
Slight changes to the wording of both the Nicene and Apostles' Creed were also reviewed for the group of priests and lay leaders.
Catechetical materials and teaching resources are expected in the near future.
Schreiner gave a brief overview of the Eucharistic Prayers and noted that the general instruction calls for kneeling during the Consecration. The objective is to have unity in posture, she said.
The new translation means revisions to musical settings of the Mass, with new wording affecting the Gloria and the Sanctus (the "Holy, holy, holy"). As well, one familiar Memorial Acclamation - "Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ will come again" - will no longer be used.
Father David Tumback, the diocese's director of liturgy, spoke on musical issues affected by the new translation.
Tumback began by inviting the assembly to sing a familiar version of the Sanctus, teaching the revised wording in a matter of seconds.
"Do not fret, because the majority of this has already been rewritten for you in Masses that you are familiar with," he assured the crowd.
He urged parish music leaders to begin to look at the options, which include purchasing the music for revised Mass settings or learning one of the new settings being introduced for the new translation.
Any Mass settings that have not been rewritten to accommodate the new wording of the prayers cannot be used after Nov. 27, he stressed. Copyright laws prohibit anyone from making changes to settings on their own.
"The spirit in which this is done is going to be so important. You in your communities already know what this is going to take in terms of implementation," Tumback said. "We need to move forward in a spirit of oneness toward implementation."
Challenges abound, and there will be mistakes, Tumback admitted, suggesting that all be prepared to laugh together when that happens.
Up-to-date information on the changes and implementation is available online at www.romanmissal.ca.