Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Bishop Peter J. Elliot on the New Translation

It is very exciting to see frank discussion of a topic that has long been something of a taboo in the Catholic world, and it is striking that the strongest comments yet come from a world authority on the rubrics of the Roman Rite. This is an article to read in detail (given last July and only printed now). Excerpt:
But do we need a new translation of the Mass in English? Is the text we currently use not good enough?
No, it is not good enough because it is not particularly good – and “good enough” is not the way to describe the language we should use in the worship of God. The time has come to change because what we are using is not only often inaccurate as a translation, but the style of English is rather dull, banal, lacking in the dignity of language for worship, more like the language of a homily than a prayer. How did this come about? To be fair, it needs to be stated at the outset that this dismal situation was brought about by good pastoral and catechetical intentions. The Bishops in the early seventies were anxious to get the “new missal” to the people as quickly as possible. But the translation they hastily approved was distorted because it was based on a flawed principle...