Translation is in sorry state


n a recent column, Father Ken Doyle responded to a question about the new wording of the Mass, (the use of “men” in one case and “people” in another). He adds, “It highlights one of the inconsistencies in the new English wording, a point made more than once by U.S. bishops during negotiations with the Vatican over the translation.”

What a sorry state of affairs! English-speaking bishops know best about sensible and colloquial

language which fits their countries and cultures as long as it’s uniform — not Rome.

The great majority of clergy and lay folk tell me that this 10-year exercise on language revision was unnecessary and expensive. “Rome has more important issues to address,” has been a common response.


I acknowledge that the previous wording was flawed, but it didn’t contain a word like “consubstantial.” It is just not part of our vocabulary. When did you last use the term?

While bringing Communion to patients at a local hospital, I noticed a note on the door reminding me to use the new wording.  Anyway, though I’m inclined to follow that dictum, as do all good sheep, “and also with You” and “one in being with the Father” occasionally slip out … mea culpa.

Tom Luton


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