On the First Sunday of Advent, 2011 the Catholic Church introduced a revised translation of the Mass. Since then I have attended Mass a number of times in no less than 5 States and in over a dozen parishes.

It edifies the persons in the pews to see the priests, both young and old, religious order and secular embrace in zealous, even joyful obedience the revised translation. I appreciate the effort – the transition was tough for me and undoubtedly, much tougher for you.

It is clear to me that my children will be holier because of the care in which the prayers are said – necessitated in part by the more complex language. There are refreshing added nuances of language – hidden gems of grace that sparkle and attract mind and soul like points of light in darkness. It is not stilted; it is formal and that is just how a creature should address the Creator – with awe and formality.

In a word, it’s ineffable.

Other Random Points:

  1. At this juncture I no longer pump my fist when I remember – and with your Spirit – it is as if I said it all my life and it is completely natural to the liturgy.
  2. I do not know why but I heard the Confiteor just once.
  3. I can almost wing the Gloria without the card. It will be a while longer with the Creed.
  4. I was hoping the new translation would result in the graceful retirement of the “Mass of Creation”, the St. Louis Jesuits and related musical movements that passed for hymns. I see a fundamental difference between “Praise and Worship” music and music proper to the Sacrifice of the Mass.
  5. Every Mass I pray that the Lord would send me one “light” or point that I can take out into the world. Sometimes it is in the readings, other times in the homily. The light can come from most anywhere. Now I am finding great inspiration in the Collect and Preface of the Mass. Maybe because it is new to my ear or maybe because the Celebrant is reading it slower as the language is different and admittedly complex.  But there is much to be mined in those two veins and it is indeed quite refreshing and rich to (in my case) discover the Collect and Preface.
  6. I wish there was more chant and silence. I understand that the music ministry needs to do something 4 or 5 times a Mass – but chant is the language and style of the Latin Rite and it is part of our timeless patrimony. Maybe if the pastor re-assured them that they would be paid if they sing or not…
  7. As far as silence goes we need it. While I do not quarrel with St. Augustine who apparently opined – “he who sings prays twice” he undoubtedly did not intend to drop the silent moments of the Mass to about 2 minutes. Meditation and contemplation is appropriate at Holy Communion and they require silence. The world is noisy enough already. Silence is when you hear God.

All in all it seems to me to be a seamless transition with years of treasure to be discovered. I am exceedingly grateful to the effort of so many to make it so.

Hat’s off to the Padres and the Pointy Hats. Well done.

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