Pope Benedict on the new translation and the Anglican provision

Finally, I should like to speak to you about two specific matters that affect your episcopal ministry at this time. One is the imminent publication of the new translation of the Roman Missal. I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you for the contribution you have made, with such painstaking care, to the collegial exercise of reviewing and approving the texts. This has provided an immense service to Catholics throughout the English-speaking world. I encourage you now to seize the opportunity that the new translation offers for in-depth catechesis on the Eucharist and renewed devotion in the manner of its celebration. “The more lively the eucharistic faith of the people of God, the deeper is its sharing in ecclesial life in steadfast commitment to the mission entrusted by Christ to his disciples” (Sacramentum Caritatis, 6).

The other matter I touched upon in February with the Bishops of England and Wales, when I asked you to be generous in implementing the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus. This should be seen as a prophetic gesture that can contribute positively to the developing relations between Anglicans and Catholics. It helps us to set our sights on the ultimate goal of all ecumenical activity: the restoration of full ecclesial communion in the context of which the mutual exchange of gifts from our respective spiritual patrimonies serves as an enrichment to us all. Let us continue to pray and work unceasingly in order to hasten the joyful day when that goal can be accomplished.

14 comments

  1. So, he has NO IDEA the process of “reviewing and approving the texts” was taken away from the English-speaking bishops when the 10,000 plus changes were made by Vox Clara, and no one’s going to tell him (and the rumours that abounded that the disaffected, disenfranchised English bishops would take the opportunity of this visit to tell him were wrong).

    And the still-undefined “patrimony” (as in “Anglican patrimony”) is now, for the first time, described as something “spiritual” – so much for all those people who’ve spoken and written about it being ceremonial, liturgical, rubrical or vesture-related – according to the Pope, it’s spiritual (and especially after his time in Westminster Abbey, where they got out and used EVERYTHING but the kitchen sink) he’s had every chance to tell us if it was any of the other things!).

  2. So, he has NO IDEA the process of “reviewing and approving the texts” was taken away from the English-speaking bishops and handled exclusively by Vox Clara, and no one’s going to tell him (and the rumours that abounded that the disaffected, disenfranchised English bishops would take the opportunity of this visit to tell him were wrong).

    They did review and approve the texts. Yes, they were not the only ones who did so, but they did do it. You can call their approval empty, or pro forma, or ineffective, etc., but the facts are the facts and it’s disrespectful for you to distort them so as to argue that the Pope is out of touch.

    And the still-undefined “patrimony” (as in “Anglican patrimony”) is now, for the first time, described as something “spiritual” – so much for all those people who’ve spoken and written about it being ceremonial, liturgical, rubrical or vesture-related.

    Umm, there’s no reason it can’t be both. If you don’t think people have been talking about it being spiritual as well, you just haven’t been paying attention.

    1. Not entirely, Samuel. The bishops approved one version. Then a lot of changes (over 10,000) were made by Vox Clara, and the bishops never saw or approved those changes. They were surprised when they got the final product from Rome.
      awr

      1. Well, but then it’s a dispute about what “approval” constitutes. This is how multiple levels authority in a legislature generally works. When the Senate Judiciary committee approves a bill and then it is amended on the floor of the Senate, the bill is still the bill approved by the committee even after it’s been changed. It’s still not evidence that the Pope “has NO IDEA the process”.

  3. From a post on Damian Thompson’s blog about the UK papal visit:

    ‘But one thing is for sure. Despite the unassuming courtesy of the Pope’s manner, he didn’t give an inch.’

    I think that analysis is probably accurate.

  4. Fr. Anthony – you also cited an unnamed source that said the Vox Clara changes began last year at this time and were never presented to the bishops?

    So, is B16 as cunning as a fox; clueless as our spiritual leader; or just so loyal that he circles himself with those who tell him what he wants to hear?

    Affirmative orthodoxy – another way of saying; package it in sugar but never deviate from the party line.

  5. I hoped that this topic would be posted by PrayTell. I was struck by how passive the description of the role of bishops conferences was phrased, “to the collegial exercise of reviewing and approving the texts.” It once was that translations were said to be undertaken by the conferences and ICEL, even created by them, now the conferences review and approve? It once was that the Roman dicasteries reviewed and approved the conferences’ translations. Besides, now one is forced to ask the question of what really the conferences actually reviewed and approved.

    All of this reminds me that this pontificate at times exhibits some of the worst traits of post-modernism, à la Foucault. Purposely obscuring historical fact – or ignoring it all together, and manipulating language to create a reality as one would have it.

  6. It once was that translations were said to be undertaken by the conferences and ICEL, even created by them, now the conferences review and approve?

    I tink LA 104 is pretty clear on that:

    “104. For the good of the faithful, the Holy See reserves to itself the right to prepare translations in any language, and to approve them for liturgical use.[74] Nevertheless, even if the Apostolic See, by means of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, may intervene from time to time out of necessity in the preparation of translations, it still belongs to the competent Conference of Bishops to approve their assumption into liturgical use within the boundaries of a given ecclesiastical territory, unless otherwise explicitly indicated in the decree of approbation of the translation promulgated by the Apostolic See. ”

    I think it’s fair to say that this clause has been fully exercised at this point.

    1. That would be the point. The processes created by SC for the translation of roman liturgies into the vernacular have been inverted and “languages” created to subvert the historical record which in and of itself bespoke of how the process was intended to function according to SC. But, indeed, as the inverted process has played out (via Vox Clara, LA, ICEL2.0, et al.) we see that not even the Holy See has followed LA… Not in terms of translation principles, nor, in process itself, as you outline above.

      Indeed, “may intervene from time to time” is hardly what has taken place!

  7. JH – that is the exact point. LA is merely a papal announcement that carries what kind of weight compared to SC as a conciliar document voted on by over 2200 bishops?

    Would agree with Mr. Flowerday and Rita Ferrone – it is both a “coup” and also reminds me constantly of a good example of a papal dictatorship of relativism.

    Lots of beautiful speeches directed primarily to external communities – let’s see if any of these speeches are applied internally.

  8. Mr. deHaas, would it not be accurate to say that LA is an instruction implementing SC (a conciliar document not being self-implementing)?

  9. Okay, let’s work with your description. Read Jeffrey Tucker on LA; connect the dots per other posts this past month in terms of the complete lack of collegiality. Realize that LA is couched in a liturgical revisionism that barely makes sense in Europe/America and even less so in the rest of the world’s dioceses.
    LA completely ignores the SC liturgical principles and turns over a 100 years of liturgical development upside down.

  10. LA is indeed a nasty coup directed against Vatican II. But when the shoddy results hit the pews, may we expect a counter-coup from the outraged faithful and lower clergy? Or will the result be a more pronounced lassitude?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *