Sunday, March 18, 2007


One of the interesting things in Sacramentum Caritatis is its emphasis on Latin.
There seems to be an “ambiguity” in the English translation of the document and the Latin and other versions, the text printed on the Vatican website is as follows.

62 …..Speaking more generally, I ask that future priests, from their time in the seminary, receive the preparation needed to understand and to celebrate Mass in Latin, and also to use Latin texts and execute Gregorian chant; nor should we forget that the faithful can be taught to recite the more common prayers in Latin, and also to sing parts of the liturgy to Gregorian chant.

Fr John Zuhlsdorf who runs a website where he boasts “slavishly accurate translations", suggests this is a more accurate translation.

62 ….. … In general, We require that future priests, from the time of Seminary onward, be trained to understand and celebrate Holy Mass in Latin as well as to employ Latin texts and use Gregorian chant; nor should great effort be neglected in regard to the faithful themselves, so that they learn thoroughly the commonly known prayers in the Latin language and in an equal degree that they should learn the Gregorian chant of those parts of the liturgy which are sung.

I am fascinated by “from the time of Seminary onward”, which seems to imply continuous formation in Latin and Chant I look forward to the Diocesan in-service training courses and dioceses producing small group study material for lay-people.

1 comment:

Gregory said...

This is most encouraging and holds out great expectations for the future. But I suspect that the implementation on a general basis which you identify will be another story. Shawn, on the New Liturgical Movement blog, does not expect that there will be an appreciable improvement on a wide basis for fifty years, long after most of us will be dead. There is a sad realism about this prognosis but it is going to take a long time to rid the Church of most of the present pejudices and the majority of elderly priests (who form the greater number left) will be reluctant to change their minds and habits.