On Easter Sunday, our local newspaper had a front page article
on the new changes in the Roman Missal that are being introduced in Advent 2011. Over the past 40 years that the mass has been in the vernacular, it has come to the attention of the Vatican that the liturgy has lost some of its effectiveness and worse yet, the theology of the Eucharistic sacrifice, perhaps, has been watered-down or lost on those who assist in the liturgy (meaning us).
So the Church has re-translated the Latin rendering it more accurate to the original meaning and intent . The entire mass is not changing but a few key parts will be changed slightly, and the faithful will have to learn the new responses with training and teaching occurring so we can all benefit from these new changes.
In the newspaper article, a local professor of law who is Catholic was criticizing the changes in the new liturgy
Donna Steslow of Macungie, researched the translations online and said she was dismayed enough by their strangeness and complexity to consider leaving Catholicism for the Episcopal or Lutheran church.
"If I have to stand there and hear things that don't sound familiar to me, it bothers me," she said, contending that a church beset by sexual abuse scandals should be making better use of its resources.
Steslow, 50, a parishioner at St. Thomas More in Salisbury Township, said she worries that the language hailed as "elevated" will only serve to confuse the young people who represent the future of the church.
"To me," she said, "it's a step backwards."
It saddens me that this lifelong Catholic would consider joining a faith tradition that does not have apostolic succession and thus is devoid of the Eucharist. Personally speaking, I would trade a "clumsy and complex sounding" liturgy any day if I knew that the end result is that I am privileged to go to the altar and receive the God of the Universe, His body, blood, soul and divinity, into my spirit, soul and body.
Doesn't sound like a bad trade to me, Besides, this is not the first time that Jesus and his Church have been accused of saying something complex and strange and offensive to the listener. In John 6:66, a large amount of disciples were offended by His words and stopped following him. I pray though, that this woman in the Morning Call article will ultimately side with the apostle Peter (the first pope) who said: "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life" (Jn 6:68).
For more information on the new translation, I encourage you to obtain a copy of Jeff Pinyan's Praying the Mass. It is a quick and easy read and will help you understand and appreciate the new translation and see the Mass with new eyes and a new heart!