A Summary of the New English Translation of the Third Edition of the Roman Missal

 

Part 1:  New English Translation of the Third Edition of the Roman Missal

 Part 2:  Liturgiam Authenticam Mandates New Theory of Translation

Part 3:  General Characteristics of the Missale Romanum

Part 4:  Translated Prayers Retain Theological Emphasis of Latin

 Part 5:  Biblical References are Made More Clear

 Part 6: The Church Fathers Are Heard Clearly

 Part 7: “Inadequacies” in the Current Translation

Part 8: Introducing us to the Translation Changes

Part 9: Greeting and the Penitential Rite

Part 10: Glory to God in the Highest

Part 11: The Gloria Continued

Part 12: The Gloria Completed; Liturgy of the Word

Part 13: The Nicene Creed

Part 14: The Nicene Creed- Continued

Part 15:  The Incarnation versus the “Birth” of Christ 

Part 16:  The Institution Narrative 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                   

Part 1:  New English Translation of the Third Edition of the Roman Missal


Beginning the first Sunday of Advent, November 26/27, 2011, all Catholics residing in English speaking countries will notice some changes in the Mass. The changes are due to every diocese in the United States beginning use of the new English translation of the Roman Missal. The U.S. bishops have asked each diocese to inform us of the changes and the reasons behind them. One important message that the bishops stress is that the structure of the Mass we have grown used to after Vatican Council II will remain the same. The changes will mainly involve the words we pray at Mass. You may have heard of the “new translation” of the Mass we will be using. There are a number of reasons for this. First reason: in the jubilee year of 2000, Pope John Paul II promulgated a new, 3rd edition of the Missale Romanum(the Latin text of the Roman Missal). Because of this, all future celebrations of Mass in the vernacular (language of the people) will be based on this new 3rd editionthe new official Latin text. Since the Second Vatican Council, we have had permission to celebrate the sacraments in languages common to us. However, these celebrations have always used texts that are translations from the standard Latin text. Since this is a new, third edition of the Missal which includes sections on new saints added to the Church calender and a few new Masses, this edition required a new English translation. In the coming months, this column will include information on the New English translation of the Missal. Coming next weekthe Vatican issued the Instruction Liturgiam Authenticam in 2001 to guide the translation of Liturgical texts.

 

 

 

Part 2:  Liturgiam Authenticam Mandates New Theory of Translation
The second reason for the new translation is the Vatican issued the new Instruction Liturgiam Authenticam in 2001 for dealing with the translation of Liturgical texts. The process works something like this. The International Commission for English in the Liturgy (ICEL), which represents 12 bishops’ conferences where English is spoken by a large number of Catholics, is the commission responsible for drafting texts based on the Latin. These texts are sent to the member Episcopal Conferences where they [the bishops] give input prior to seeking approval from Rome. After Vatican Council II, ICEL followed the theory of dynamic equivalence for translation. Dynamic equivalence is where translators convey the meaning of the Latin text—the equivalent in contemporary words and metaphors to what the Latin text says.  This often means adding “explanatory words and phrases” not found in the Latin text, as well as “deletion of images [the translators] considered unnecessary.” In 2001, Liturgiam Authenticam gave new norms for translation which superceed the previous Instruction followed by ICEL. Dynamic equivalence gave way to what can be called formal equivalencetranslating the words and syntax [of the Latin] one to one with as much fidelity as possible. Formal equivalence will help us to see more clearly the seven characteristics of Latin prayers used in the Missal. (Based on Robert Tuzik’s “Translating the Roman Missal”)

 

 

 

Part 3:  General Characteristics of the Missale Romanum
Liturgiam Authenticam mandated translating the words and syntax [of the Latin] one to one with as much fidelity as possible. It mentions that translations respect “in so far as possible” the “style and structure” of the Roman Rite prayers. Our new translation, using formal equivalence, will enable us to see more clearly the following characteristics that are found in the Missale Romanum:   1) It will maintain the “Inversion” used in Latin prayers—the “collect” prayers usually end with the most important words; 2) the Biblical references embedded in the Roman Rite will be more evident; 3) the Allusions to Patristic writings (Early Church Fathers) will be more clear; 4) Rich and Varied Vocabulary of the Roman Rite will be even more respected; 5) the Anthropomorphic Expressions will be literally rendered, and that will allow us to see in English the great imagery found in the Latin; 6) the Roman Rite shows concern for exactness of vocabulary, whereby the formative aspect of liturgical prayer is safeguarded; 7) the concise and noble tone of the Latin prayers will be seen. Regarding the “noble tone” of the prayers:  these are not just “archaic” words that have little meaning today. Today’s bulletin insert explains the deep theological meaning behind some of the words we will see—words part of our “passive”, but not our everyday vocabulary.

 

 

 

Part 4:  Translated Prayers Retain Theological Emphasis of Latin
Bishop Arthur Serratelli gave an address in October, 2008, where he listed the seven characteristics of the Latin Rite prayers that we heard about last week. The first was inversion: this means that the Latin prayers “conclude strongly,” usually emphasizing our final end/the four last things. The Latin prayer ends on a strong note, and our new translation will follow the same sequence as the Latin, so that our prayers in English also “conclude strongly.” Inversion means that what the prayer seeks to emphasize what is said at the end. Since we normally remember best what we hear last, this inversion will help us to remember the most important part of the prayers we hear. Some examples will help illustrate this. From the 12th Sunday in Ordinary TimeRenewed by the nourishment of the Sacred Body and the Precious Blood,we ask your clemency, Lord, that what we celebrate with constant devotion, we may attain with redemption assured. Through Christ our Lord. Bishop Serratelli comments: “The phrase what we celebrate with constant devotion is out of its normal order of speech. We would expect the prayer to read in the following way: that we may attain what we celebrate with constant devotion. But this order is now inverted; and this has the effect of giving greater emphasis to the purpose of the celebration — namely, our redemption.” From Tuesday of the 1st week of LentGrant us through these mysteries, Lord, that by tempering earthly desires we may learn to love the things of heaven. Bishop Serratelli: “Here we would expect to say that we may learn to love the things of heaven, by tempering earthly desires. Yet the order is reversed." This results in a strong emphasis on the things of heaven. The Church wants us to focus on heaven, and the prayer emphasizes this by putting it last. This is one characteristic of what the new translation gives us. Citations Based on “The New Missal: Historic Moment in Liturgical Renewal.” http://www.adoremus.org/0609Serratelli.html

 

 

 

Part 5:  Biblical References are Made More Clear
Today we continue looking at a another characteristic in our new translation: how the Missal will help us to see more clearly when the prayer is using a Biblical image; second, some prayers actually quote the scriptural verse almost verbatim within the prayer itself. Example:  In the Collect for the First Sunday of Advent, we pray: Grant, we pray, almighty God, that your faithful may resolve to run forth with righteous deeds, to meet your Christ who is coming, so that gathered at His right hand they may be worthy to possess the heavenly kingdom. The Latin version has the word, “occurrentes, ‘running to meet.’ Yet, our current text says nothing about running. It was lost in the translation” (Sarratelli). The newly translated prayer shown above keeps this image from St. Paul. “Do you not know that the runners in the stadium all run in the race, but only one wins the prize? Run so as to win” (1 Cor. 9:26). He uses the same image in Galatians 2:2, 5:7, and Romans 9:16. “With the image of the race, Paul reminds us that the Christian life requires discipline and personal effort. Hence, the new translation is richer, fuller and more biblical than the translation we are using at the present” (Sarratelli). On Friday in the Second Week of Advent, we pray this prayer, taken from the 8th century A.D.:  Grant your people, we pray, almighty God, to keep wide awake for the coming of your Only-Begotten Son, that as He Himself, the author of our salvation, has taught, we may be alert, with lamps alight, and hurry out to greet Him as He comes. We are meant to remember Matthew 25:1-13, the parable of the wise and foolish virgins. Here are two examples of praying the actual words of the biblical text. “In Eucharistic Prayer III, we will no longer say: ‘From east to west, a perfect offering is made to the glory of your name.’ Instead we pray the words of Malachi 1:11: ‘… from the rising of the sun to its setting’. The Latin uses “rising of the sun to its setting.” The original prayer dealt with time, not geography, so a more literal translation avoids a possibly ambiguous meaning. In the Communion Rite, we will now repeat the words of the humble and compassionate centurion of Matthew 8:8: ‘Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word.... Citations Based on “The New Missal: Historic Moment in Liturgical Renewal.” http://www.adoremus.org/0609Serratelli.html

 

 

 

Part 6 The Church Fathers Are Heard Clearly 
The guiding principle of translation is that the English express more literally what is in the Latin. Now, when the Mass refers to writings of the Early Church Fathers, we will see this more clearly. One example is enough. In the Collect, or Opening Prayer, for Saint Ignatius of Antioch (October 17), we pray:May the offering of our worship be pleasing to you, O Lord, who accepted Saint Ignatius, the wheat of Christ, made pure bread through the suffering of his martyrdom. Through Christ our Lord (Serratelli). , “The wheat of Christ” and “pure bread” are images taken from the letter St. Ignatius wrote to the Romans, asking them not to do anything that might interfere with his upcoming martyrdom. “Suffer me to become food for the wild beasts, through whose instrumentality it will be granted me to attain to God. I am the wheat of God, and let me be ground by the teeth of the wild beasts, that I may be found the pure bread of Christ” (Epsitle to the Romans, 4). The new translation has another benefit. In the current version of this prayer, it says: “Lord, receive our offering as you accepted St. Ignatius.” The new translation starts: “may the offering of our worship be pleasing to you, O Lord.” In his epistle, St. Ignatius knows that he is about to die. He begs the Christians in Rome not to interrupt his martyrdom because it will assure his place in heaven. In this prayer, we pray that God will be pleased with our worship of Him during Mass, and that He will receive our worship in the same way He received St. Ignatius. Citations Based on “The New Missal: Historic Moment in Liturgical Renewal.” http://www.adoremus.org/0609Serratelli.html

 

 

 

Part 7: “Inadequacies” in the Current Translation
In today’s bulletin insert from the United States Bishops, question nine answers a question about our current translation. It gives a couple of examples to what it calls “inadequacies in the present translation,” as reasons why it must change. There are some that the insert leaves unmentioned. One example is how the current English version translates the word “gratia.” According to Bishop Peter Elliott from Australia, our current version is closer to “a paraphrase rather than a translation” of the Latin prayer in some instances. He says that there are seven Collects (Opening Prayers) in Ordinary Time that use the word “gratia” in Latin. In none of those seven Collects is “gratia” translated as “grace” into our current English. “‘Gratia’ is usually rendered as ‘love,’ or ‘gifts of love.’” In the 28th Sunday, the Latin talks about “prevenient grace,” or “the grace that goes before us.” The word grace is not there, so in English the prayer loses its meaning (Elliott). In some “prayers over the gifts” and “post-communion prayers,” the same problem appears. There is a heresy that the Church calls “pelagianism,” basically that we save ourselves by our own efforts. The bishops found that, in our current translation, some of the prayers could seem to underemphasize God’s role. The Church wants to avoid even the appearance of such a tendency. Given the importance of “gratia” for our Christian life, the Vatican and our bishops have judged that it should be translated literally in English. The Catholic Church has always taught that God’s grace alone saves us: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from you; it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8-9). But savlation does not come through faith alone, but by “faith working through love” (Galatians 5:6). The relationship between grace, what God does, and our free will, what we do, should be accurately maintained in our public worship. An ancient axiom says lex orandi, lex credendi—the rule of prayer is the rule of belief. Catholic faith and prayer have a reciprocal relationship. If our faith is not well stated in prayer, our prayer could lead us away from that faith.When orthodox faith is well stated in prayer, our prayer will deepen and confirm us in the faith. The Church hopes and earnestly believes that the new translation will do just that—confirm our faith! (Citations Based on (“Why We Need the New Translation of the Mass.” http://www.adoremus.org/1110BishopElliott.html)

 

 

 

Part 8: Introducing us to the Translation Changes
During the next few months, this column will begin looking at the translation changes to those parts of the Mass that we hear every week. First, the structure of the Mass is not changing. It still involves four parts:  Introductory Rites, Liturgy of the Word, Liturgy of the Eucharist, and the Concluding Rites. The Introductory Rites includes everything up until we sit for the first time to listen to the readings. After the Entrance Chant or Hymn, we begin Mass with the Sign of the Cross and the Greeting. There is no change to the formula for the Sign of the Cross. The Greeting is the first change that we will hear. When Mass is celebrated by the bishop, he normally greets us saying, “Peace be with you.” In Masses celebrated by a priest, he has a few options. He may greet us with, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all,” where “communion” replaces “fellowship.” This greeting is based on St. Paul’s passage in 2 Corinthians 13:13. Another option is, “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,” which is found often in St. Paul’s letters (cf. Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:3). Most often, the priest will say “the Lord be with you.” This is also a biblical greeting, found in Judges 6:12, Ruth 2:4, 2 Chronicles 15:2, and in Luke 1:28. Our response to any of these above greetings has beenand also with you.” On the first Sunday of Advent, 2011, we will sayand with your spirit.” This change was mandated by the Instruction Liturgiam Authenticam. The Latin phrase “et cum spiritu tuo” must be translated as literal as possible. Our English translation of “and with your spirit” will match responses already made by Catholics of other language groups (in spanish “y con tu espíritu,” in Italian, “e con il tuo spirito”).This will be our response any time there is a dialogue part with the priest—at the beginning of Mass after the sign of the Cross, at the end of Mass, and at the Offertory just after the priest washes his hands. Our new translation shows us more directly that the response is biblically based (2 Timothy 4:22; Galatians 6:18; Philippians 4:23; Philemon 25).

 

 

 

Part 9: Greeting and the Penitential Rite
Two weeks ago, we looked at our new response to when the bishop, priest, or deacon greets us—et cum spiritu tuo. We will say “and with your spirit” instead of “and also with you.” There is a tradition in the Church where the Latin word spiritus (spirit) identifies a characteristic which distinguishes the ordained from the laity.­­­ The phrase “and with your spirit” is something we say only when we are answering an ordained minister. When we the congregation say the word “spirit,” we acknowledge the special role that the bishop, priest, and sometimes the deacon, has during Mass or one of the other sacraments. He has been ordained by God, and he has received the proper annointing by the Holy Spirit. This annointing gives him the ability to minister the sacraments.
During Mass, after the cleric greets us, the Penitential Rite normally begins. There are three forms that this can take. One that we sometimes hear is called the Confiteor. Here is the new translation for the Confiteor. The words in bold indicate the changes to our current version: “I confess to almighty God and to you, my brothers and sisters, that I have greatly sinned, in my thoughts and in my words, in what I have done and in what I have failed to do, through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault; therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin, all the Angels and Saints, and you, my brothers and sisters, to pray for me to the Lord our God.” We say “my fault” three times. This is because it is there three times in the Latin. We also emphasize that sin is our own “fault” by repeating it. This shows our Lord that we are taking responsibility for our sins. This is an act of humility, and it shows our Lord that we know we have need of a Savior. Why is it that the first thing we do during Mass is to individually confess our sins to God? God is so Holy and perfect, that we must confess our sins any time we are in His presence. In order to be worthy temples of God at Communion time, we should already have taken care of any mortal sins in the Sacrament of Confession. Any venial sins we may have committed since our last confession are taken care of during the Penitential Rite. We confess any and all venial sins during that time so that God may forgive them. This means that when we go up for Holy Communion, we are as pure and sinless as we should be to receive the Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

 

 

Part 10: Glory to God in the Highest
When we begin using the revised English translation of Mass on November 27th, one of the biggest changes we will notice is the words of the Gloria. Our English text of the Gloria has changed so much that music composers have revised the musical settings for it and even written new ones. It may help to look in the missalette to compare what we now say to the new translation. We say or chant the Gloria on all Sundays during the year, except for Sundays during Advent and Lent. Here is the new text of the Gloria with the changes shown in boldface: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to people of good will. We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you, we give you thanks for your great glory, Lord God, heavenly King, O God, almighty Father. Lord Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son, Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father, you take away the sins of the world (from John 1:29), have mercy on us; you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer; you are seated at the right hand of the Father, have mercy on us. For you alone are the Holy One (Revelation 15:4), you alone are the Lord (Psalm 83:19), you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ,with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.” Notice that in the first line of the Gloria, what we say now, “his people on earth,” will be replaced by “people of good will.” This change better translates the Latin, and it better connects with the Christmas story in Luke’s gospel (from Luke 2:14), where the angels are announcing peace because the Christ child is born. The Church tells us that the will is very important. When the will of a human being conforms to God’s will, that is a “good will” which experiences the peace proclaimed by the angels. May our love and devotion to God increase every time we pray this new Gloria! 

 

 

 

Part 11: The Gloria - Continued
Today we continue looking at the changes in the Gloria. In the line “We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you, we give you thanks for your great glory,” there are five verbs to glorify God. In our Liturgy we often use many verbs to address God. Our current version of the Gloria—found in our missalettes, summarized or combined words to aviod repetition. These five verbs appear in the Latin Gloria, so they are included in the Gloria in our new English translation. The next change in the Gloria involves the words used to describe who Jesus Christ is. The Gloria calls Jesus the “Only Begotten Son,” and “Son of the Father.” Here we have to understand the difference between “nature” and “person.” The word nature talks about “what” something is. The word person talks about “who” someone is. The phrases “Only Begotten Son” and “Son of the Father” refer to who Jesus is and how He relates to the nature of the Trinity. These phrases do not refer to Jesus’ birth in Bethlehem, nor to His Incarnation, when He took a human nature and united it with Himself. When we say that Jesus is the “Son of the Father,” we mean that He is the eternal Son of God the Father because He was “Begotten” by God. He was “Begotten” by God the Father before time began. The consequence is that Jesus Christ had no beginning; there was never a moment in which Jesus did not exist. He is in every respect equal to God the Father, and God has always existed. Jesus Christ was the only one ever Begotten of God, and so we say “Only Begotten Son.” The name “Son of the Father” is entirely unique to Jesus. Jesus is the “Son of the Father” by nature. God has only One Nature. It is One God-head in three Divine Persons, so Jesus has the same Divine Nature as the Father and the Holy Spirit. This is the main doctrine that the Gloria is praising in the Mass—the eternity and the divinity of Jesus Christ. How do human beings relate to Jesus, since we are also children of God? Every human being who is validly baptized is a child of God, but by Grace. We as Christians are adopted sons and daughters of the Father by Grace; the divine sonship of Jesus is His by nature.

 

 

 

Part 12: The Gloria Completed; Liturgy of the Word
In last week’s section, we were still in the Gloria. The Gloria prayer finishes like this: “you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us; you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer; you are seated at the right hand of the Father, have mercy on us. For you alone are the Holy One, you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.” The only changes are the words in boldface. The section “you take away the sins of the world,” are the words of John the Baptist: “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Beginning on Easter Sunday, when we start to chant the Gloria once again, you will notice that we currently sing about “sin” in the singular. The new Gloria will have us sing about Jesus taking away the sins of the world—following the Latin where the word for sin is in the plural. The difference here is that Jesus does not just take away sin in a generic sense. Jesus takes away and forgives our individual, personal sins! Our new text for the Gloria keeps us praying in the Scriptures. It gives us words fit for praising God, and it should help us to remember the gift of God’s forgiving power. At this point, we are finished with the Introductory Rites and with the Gloria. The Liturgy of the Word is the next part of the Mass. Our new Missal translation will not affect the Scripture readings come the 1st Sunday of Advent. The next noticeable difference takes place after the Homily. When we stand after the Homily to profess our faith, we all recite The Nicene Creed. The Nicene Creed has been retranslated. Next week, we will look at the specific changes to the Creed and the reasons behind them.

 

 

 

Part 13: The Nicene Creed
We will all notice many differences in The Nicene Creed on the 1st Sunday of Advent. The new text starts “I believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth.” You will notice right away that we no longer will say “We believe.” What is the reason for the change to “I believe,” you may ask? There are a couple of reasons. First of all, in the official text of the Creed, the verb to believe only appears one time, at the very beginning: “Credo in unum Deum.” Credo applies to the entire Creed and to each part, but the people who translated the Nicene Creed for Mass wanted to help out English speaking Catholics. They inserted “we believe” six times to avoid the feeling of a run-on sentence. Since Credo is Latin for “I believe,” whereas “we believe” would be Credimus, our new English text translates Credo accurately. You may be asking again, “why does the Church use “I believe” during Mass, and not “we believe? After all, during the 1st Council of Nicea, in its original form, the Nicene Creed does begin with “We believe.” True. However, in both the Latin and Greek Christian traditions, the Nicene Creed has begun with I believe when it is used in the liturgy. Fr. Daniel Merz reminds us that when we profess the Creed at Mass, we profess it “as a single person, made one by faith.” The Church is calling us to take personal responsibility for our faith by actually saying “I believe” everything that the Nicene Creed contains. Every single Catholic is making a personal profession of his or her faith at Mass. It is very important for me to affirm that “I believe” everything that the Church believes. The Creed continues: “of all things visible and invisible.” This phrase replaces what we now say, “of all that is seen and unseen,” because it is more precise. Think about the difference between something that is “seen” and something “visible.” Other countries are “unseen” to me, yet they are “visible” naturally speaking. However, the Creed is also professing that God is the Creator of things not naturally visible, but invisible, such as the angels. This phrase also references the Bible: “for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible” (Colossians 1:16).

 

 

 

 

Part 14: The Nicene Creed - Continued
Today let us look at two of the important changes to The Nicene Creed. The next section of the Creed says:  “I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father; through him all things were made. We covered Jesus Christ being the Only Begotten Son of God when discussing the Gloria. The next sentence says Jesus Christ is “born of the Father.” The word “born” does not mean that Jesus at one time did not exist, then all of a sudden came into existence—that He is a creature. Jesus Christ is not a creature; He is God. That is also why the Creed says that Jesus was “not made.” The word “bornrefers to the eternal pre-existence of Jesus Christ, and it distinguishes Jesus as the Second Person of the Trinity from God the Father. God the Father is the origin, if you will, of the divine nature. When was Jesus “born of the Father?” It says “before all ages.” This means Jesus was “born of the Father” even before the creation of the heavens and the earth in the book of Genesis. Christ existed from all eternity even before time began. The next part of the Creed replaces the “one in being with the Father” that we have become used to saying. It says that Jesus is “consubstantial with the Father.” Consubstantial is a completely unique word. It is formed by two Latin words (con + substance). Con comes from a Latin preposition (cum) meaning together with. Substance refers to the most real part of an existing thing. Using consubstantial in the Creed means that Jesus Christ is of one substance with God the Father. Consubstantial is meant to impress upon us that fact that Jesus Christ is God!! Reciting it every week will force us to stop and figure out what it means. It is good that we will no longer say “one in being” if for no other reason than to verify our faith in the divinity of Jesus Christ.

 

 

 

 

Part 15: The Incarnation versus the “Birth” of Christ 
We will try to finish up with the rest of the changes to the Nicene Creed:  “and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and became man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate, he suffered death and was buried, and rose again on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures . . . . I believe in the Holy Spirit . . . who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets. I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church. I confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead.” One of the most important changes is that the word “incarnate” replaces the word “born” in the underlined sentence. Our current text implies that Christ “became man” at the moment he was “born.” That is the reason for the change. Before Christ was “born,” He was “incarnate” of the Blessed Virgin Mary by the Holy Spirit. The Incarnation is referred to by St. John: “And the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us, and we saw his glory” (John 1:14). We may ask, to what does this refer? The word “incarnate” means “given flesh.” Jesus Christ was was “given flesh” or “incarnate” by His Mother. It is at that moment, when Jesus was given His human nature, that He “became man.” The following lengthy quotation from the Roman Catechism helps us to appreciate the moment of the Incarnation:  “. . .  as soon as the Blessed Virgin assented to the announcement of the Angel . . . the most sacred body of Christ was immediately formed, and to it was united a rational soul enjoying the use of reason; and thus in the same instant of time He was perfect God and perfect man. . . . as soon as the soul of Christ was united to His body, the Divinity became united to both; and thus at the same time His body was formed and animated, and the Divinity united to body and soul. Hence, at the same instant He was perfect God and perfect man, and the most Holy Virgin, having at the same moment conceived God and man, is truly and properly called Mother of God and man.” We are now finished with the Nicene Creed. Next week we examine changes in The Liturgy of the Eucharist. Aaron Rose, seminarian (http://www.cin.org/users/james/ebooks/master/trent/tcreed03.htm).

 

 

 

 

Part 16: The Institution Narrative 
The Liturgy of the Eucharist: this week, I am taking a topic a little out of order:  changes to the translation of the Institution Narrative. This refers to the words the priest prays during Mass which change bread into the Body of Christ and wine into His Blood. This is what the priest will say beginning the 1st Sunday of Advent:  “TAKE THIS, ALL OF YOU, AND EAT OF IT: FOR THIS IS MY BODY WHICH WILL BE GIVEN UP FOR YOU,” and “TAKE THIS, ALL OF YOU, AND DRINK FROM IT: FOR THIS IS THE CHALICE OF MY BLOOD, THE BLOOD OF THE NEW AND ETERNAL COVENANT, WHICH WILL BE POURED OUT FOR YOU AND FOR MANY FOR THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS. DO THIS IN MEMORY OF ME.” Only two additional words are inserted when the bread is consecrated into Christ’s Body. The word “of” connects us to this teaching from St. Paul: “Because the loaf of bread is one, we, though many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf” (1 Corinthians 10:17). By eating the Eucharist, or the “one bread,” we become “one body.” As you have noticed, there are many additional changes in the English words the priest will say over the chalice. The Latin word calix is more accurately translated with “chalice.” The word everlasting in our current version is replaced by “eternal.” Eternal makes it very clear that the covenant God made with us in Jesus Christ is an eternal covenant, or outside the confines of time:  it cannot be measured. It is more accurate than using “everlasting” to translate the Latin “aeterni.” One interesting change is the verb used to describe what happens to Christ’s blood. The verb “shed” is replaced by “poured out.” Notice that the liquid inside a vessel, like our chalice, can be “poured out,” so also can blood be “poured out” from a body. The verb “poured out” makes the connection between Christ’s institution of the Eucharist at the Last Supper and His death on the Cross—both the blood of Christ on the Cross and His blood at the Last Supper (as well as at every Mass) are “poured out.” The Church also understands from this that Christ’s sacrifice on the Cross was a voluntary act (see John 10:17-18). More next week! Aaron Rose, seminarian

 

“Drink from it, all of you, for this is the blood of my covenant, which will be shed on behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins” (Mt 26:27-28); “This is the blood of my covenant, which will be shed for many” (Mk 14:24); see also Is 52:13—53:12, especially 53:12: “[he] bore the sins of many, and interceded for the transgressors.”