Monday, November 21, 2011

Saying Good-Bye to the Old English Translation of the Mass

I know many of you are very excited about the new English translation of the Mass, but as someone who isn't particularly fond of change, I feel a bit sad about the ending of an era. It just so happened that my younger son was scheduled to altar serve at the 5:30 p.m. Mass on Sunday, so we ended up attending the very last Sunday Mass in our parish with the old translation. It was bittersweet to be there. Our pastor talked about the upcoming changes and we all read over the new placards in the pews that have the new texts.

The Mass itself isn't changing, of course, and I understand the reason for the change in the words - the more authentic translation of the Latin text and an increased reverence, but still, the old translation is the only one I have ever known. It is comfortable - an old friend, and I will miss it.

I realize that this is nothing like the change my parents went through as young adults when the Mass changed from Latin to English. I also know, in time, the new translation will flow off my tongue (well, perhaps not the word "consubstantial") and someday I probably won't even remember the old version. It will just take some getting used to. But, I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge the end of the old, before embracing the new beginning.

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