Tuesday, January 17, 2012

New Translation Tuesday: The World of In-Between

"New Translation Tuesday" greetings from San Diego, California. I am here helping with the liturgies and music for a retreat of U.S. Catholic Army Chaplains.

We began the retreat last night with Evening Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours. I hadn't prayed anything from the Liturgy of the Hours since the advent of the new translation. I must admit a very good sense of comfortability with the language of the prayer. It was like visiting an old friend whom I hadn't seen in a while.

It did point out the reality with which we are dealing in the Church now. Especially for those who pray the Liturgy of the Hours daily (bishops, priests, deacons, and many lay Catholics), there will be a certain disconnect for quite some time. The language of the Hours is the language that we have been used to for so long, and from what I understand there is no push to get the Hours re-translated any time soon. So our leaders of prayer will continued to be formed by one style of prayer while needing to use a completely different style of prayer to lead us at Mass on weekdays and on Sundays, forming us by that prayer.

That point was hammered home quite poignantly last night at Evening Prayer here at the retreat. At the conclusion, the priest who led the prayer blessed and dismissed us. When he said "The Lord be with you," I know that I immediately began the "And also with you" response, as did some others. But there were priests in the room who literally raised their voices (up until this point they had not done so with the other texts they prayed), and said quite loudly "And with your spirit." It just jolted me. I guess it just pointed to the fact that we will be living in this kind of strange uneven liturgical world; for many of us, for the rest of our lives.

Praying the Liturgy of the Hours, the "official" text of the Church, might be a haven for many who have told me that they are having real difficulty with the new translation at Sunday Mass. There is a familiarity there.

Well, that's it for now. I hope that you are having a good week.

Gotta sing. Gotta pray.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My parish has weekly Vespers services during Advent and Lent. This past Advent, once people realized that they needed to say "And with your Spirit," the prayers seemed to go about as smoothly as prayers at Mass were going. It did cross my mind that people might find a service with less emphasis on dialog, such as a Taize service, helpful as an alternative for community prayer as we continue to adjust to the new translation.