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June 15, 2006

Comments

mio

U.S. Catholic bishops on Thursday ended years of soul searching over whether Catholic politicians who support abortion rights should be denied communion, leaving the decision with local bishops.

This took years of soul searching to come up with?

Chris S.

"But the bishops kept the current version, noting, " 'Consubstantial' is a theological expression requiring explanation for many."

Yes, God forbid that the laity might learn a tiny bit of theology. I mean, they don't really need to know about that Trinity thing, when there are social justice issues to tend to!

In all seriousness though, I'm quite pleased overall. This is a positive step forward, but not the end of the road.

Christopher Fotos

Gotta agree with the bishops on "consubstantial." What a dreadful ugly slab of a word that is in English. It's a prayer we're talking about, not a doctoral dissertation.

Fr. Totton

I guess what Christopher Fotos is saying is that we shouldn't expect our prayer to speak of profound theological realities!

Jeff

"'Consubstantial' is a theological expression requiring explanation for many.""

I'm sorry they didn't have time to explain it to the bishops who didn't understand it...

Jeff

Funny position the abortion position puts Archbishop Wuerl in. He pushed for a common strategy for the whole episcopate; now that his suggestion has been declined, I wonder if he'll come up with his own policy?

Aimee Milburn

"U.S. Catholic bishops on Thursday ended years of soul searching over whether Catholic politicians who support abortion rights should be denied communion, leaving the decision with local bishops."

In other words, they copped out. In the 80's they decided to leave it up to individual bishops to decide what to do with priest child molesters, and look what happened.

No spine, no unity. It changes nothing. Catholics will continue to sin with impunity, and abortion will be as divisive as ever. What's the use of preaching the truth, if you won't hold people accountable for it?

Nope, hard-working prolife Catholic activists can't expect unified support from their bishops, not even when their own elected Catholic representatives vote against the very legislation they're trying to get passed. As a Catholic prolife activist, I've had that experience. Talk about feeling like you've had your legs cut out from under you. And the legislator, as far as I know, still goes to mass and receives Holy Communion - and makes a big deal out of being a Catholic.

According to one news report (ABC), Cardinal Theodore McCarrick reiterated a policy approved by the bishops in 2004, adding that he was concerned about partisan politics seeping into Catholic life.

Hello. It's not about avoiding politics. It's about upholding God's law, which is higher than politics, and holding the members of your flock accountable for doing the same.

What a disappointment. More of the same old same old. Have the bishops learned nothing? I love the Church and I love the bishops, including especially my own. But sometimes I just want to holler at them.

LL cool chaz

Weren't communists once forbidden to recieve & automatically excommunicated?

What about Nazis? If a member of the SS or a brownshirt was to present himself at the altar- in uniform, say (sure, such people usually had little use for the Church, but as a mental exercise) would Cardinal McCarrick and the rest of our bishs say partisan politics ought not divide us.. little silly details such as genocide, euthanasia of the handicapped and unprovoked agressive war aside..

Would they allow Hitler to communicate without a public renunciation of his crimes?

Really. I'd so like to know. I'm not being facetious in the least.

Victor Morton

Father/Jeff:

I agree with Chris, and I don't think it has anything to do with disinterest in profound theological realities. The problem is that "consubstantial" is simply atrocious English (or rather, is "good English" only if "similarity to Latin" is the measuring stick).

If one is interested in profound theology, "one in being" is just as good, and has the side benefit of being far more likely to be at least intelligible to all (if not necessarily profoundly understood). "Consubstantial" is more likely to produce eye-glazing than be as productive of profound reflection of the nature of the Trinity as "trans-substantiation" already has been about the nature of the Real Presence. [/irony]

Christopher Fotos

I guess what Christopher Fotos is saying is that we shouldn't expect our prayer to speak of profound theological realities!

No, father, that is not what I'm saying.

I think I have some appreciation of the challenge translators face at even the most simple level, never mind across cultures, languages and time. But a translation of a prayer that merely transliterates from one language to another is a failure. Anyone who has wrestled with translations of poems understands this.

"Consubstantial" is an ugly roadblock of a word in English. It's a word only bureaucrats and theologians (and, er, at least one priest) could love. It's the verbal equivalent of a 70's Bauhaus church. True but as inspiring as a garage.

Can you tell I was an English major?

Victor Morton

I guess I should clarify my last sentence. I obviously don't deny trans-substantiation (duh). Nor am I calling for its replacement with an earthier, more Anglo-Saxon term -- there really isn't any good alternative in current English usage.

But rather, many Catholics today misunderstand or disbelieve the Real Presence despite the use of Latinate vocabulary.

Cathy

As someone who has spent a few decades as a Catholic educator, I would agree that 'consubstantial' tells people nothing, while they understand 'one in being.'

'Transubstantiation' requires at least a five minute background number, starting with "Have you ever heard of Thomas Aquinas?" At the end of it, mostly since we don't live in a physical world as Aristotle understood it, people still can nod their heads and think that I am saying that the Eucharistic species 'stand for' Christ. But if I say "actually become" the Body and Blood of Christ, lights go on. The world 'actual' packs a whole lot more punch with English speaking Americans in the 21st century than anything about substans and accidens.

I would hate to have to add a catechesis on constubstantial to my repertoire, but with folks who are older (or at least 10 years old now) I could begin with "Do you remember when we used to say 'one in being'? Well, that's what it means...."

(Not that I hate catechesis, and not that I don't make sure when teaching the Creed to catechists and teachers that we use these words (in Greek, too!), but just in an everyday, "This is what things mean" sort of way.)

Fidelity to Latin is a fine thing, but people don't speak it or understand it. I'm glad I had it high school and college, but in how many places is it even possible to study it anymore? (And thereby I date myself....)

Chris G

Am I the only one that finds consubstantial easier to understand than "one in being?"

JaneC

Cathy--as far as I can tell, most universities still offer Latin classes. Class size is smallish, though.

stunted

No, Chris G., I think it's clearer than 'being' too, I just didn't have the guts to say so, as a fellow English major had already vehemently spoken for the opposite side ;) .

Dudley

But the bishops kept the current version, noting, " 'Consubstantial' is a theological expression requiring explanation for many."

As others have noted, we all know plenty of priests and directors of religious education who don't want to "explain" because that would be that rude "ideological" practice of teaching "the Truth".

As for the adopted changes, they sounded very familiar. In fact, they sounded EXACTLY like the English translations in my pre-Vatican II missal. "I am not worthy that you should come under my roof": I've been saying that all along, all these years, since childhood, since it more exactly references what was said to Jesus. Really, why didn't they just start using the English translation that was in all our Latin/English missals and save us the miserable melodramatics of the last 40 years?

Cat Clinic

Pace Mr. Fotos and other metaphysi-phobic commenters, I grew up *as an Episcopalian* saying "consubstantial with the Father" every Sunday in reciting the Creed. I knew from wee childhood what it meant (insofar as the Trinity is comprehensible at that, or any, age!).

When I became Catholic, the change to "one in being with the Father" was just another one of those jarring, irritating dumbing-downs I had to put up with in learning a new English liturgy. For my money, consubstantial is both more elegant and more accurate than "one in being."

(P.S. -- I also grew up to be a philosophy major -- no doubt under the influence of the pernicious "consubstantial"!)

California Girl

I think that it helps if a prayer "flows" and "sounds smooth to the ear". If it jars the ear when spoken aloud, it can distract from the sense of what is being prayed. In that sense, "consubstantial" wouldn't be as big a change as it might seem--it has as many syllables as "one in being" (with the stresses in the same places).

Say it out loud:

"ONE in BEing WITH the FAther"

"CONsubSTANtial WITH the FAther"

Both are trochaic tetrameter, keeping the rhythm that we are used to.

(The most famous poem in this meter is probably Longfellow's "Song of Hiawatha"--"By the shores of Gitche Gumee/By the shining Big-Sea-Water...")

Victor Morton

Am I the only one that finds consubstantial easier to understand than "one in being"?

If English rather than Latin is your native language (and the contrary obviously describes nobody), the only way "consubstantial" rather than "one in being" can be easier to understand is if one has formally studied theology or philosophy that originally was written in Latin, and so has learned to associate the concept "consubstantial" and the associated medieval metaphysics with Latinate vocabulary.

Otherwise, yes, you would be the only one.

Tough as this might be to say, Latin is now the native language of nobody. And no longer the lingua franca of all educated persons.

Fr. John Zuhlsdorf   o{]:¬)

The intentional dumbing down of translations indicates that those doing the dumbing strictly adhere to the old adage "Quidquid recipitur, in modo recipientis recipitur". In other words, since "whatever is received is received in the manner of the one receiving it", by dumbing down the translations they signal their opinon about our intelligence. o{]:¬)

Julia

Cat Clinic:

I have a philosophy minor and I don't have a problem with consubstantial either.

My 1965 missal says "of one substance with the Father" - why not go back to that or "same substance" if we can't handle multisyllabic words anymore?

BTW Christopher Fotos: The Creed is not a prayer - it is a formal profession of our belief system as Catholics. Of all the things in the Mass, it should be precise.

I read somewhere that the NO Mass was dumbed down to 7th grade reading level so gradeschool kids could understand it. Great. There are software programs that will assign a reading level to a piece of writing. I wonder what the program would make of the NO Mass as it currently stands?

I noticed that the new translation of the Gloria will revert to "peace to men of good will" instead of the current "peace to his people on earth". Reminds me of the difference between Catholic and Protestant Christmas carols - "Peace to men of good will" vs. "Peace, good will toward men". There's a big difference - it isn't minor. It has intimatioins of the huge fights about justification and works.

The Bishop from Leeds reminds me of why kids nowadays hate reading older poets like Homer and Dante -they haven't a clue about the literary, mythological and biblical references that make the poems so rich.

Julia

Victor:

Doctors and Lawyers find it extremely helpful to have some Latin background. They use words all the time based on Latin. So did my nephew who made it to the 4th round at the spelling bee on ESPN recently. Lots and lots of our words are based on Latin. Didn't you study the derivation of words in grade school and high school?

And Latin is extremely helpful in learning and understanding French, Spanish, Catalan, Portugeuse, Italian, etc. etc. The use of Latin is not dead even if nobody speaks it. It's "deadness" is actually one of its positive attributes as a basis for inventing new words and maintaining original meanings over the centuries.

Meg Q

"(the question on the Mass translation is - what are those adaptations for the US? I'll be looking. You too.)"

Absolutely. So glad that vote is over, though.

And "consubstantial" - are we supposed to be children or adults? (The children themselves are supposed to grow to be adults in the faith, IIRC). Consubstantialum patri, dude. It's pretty easy.

Victor Morton

Julia:

I'm not saying knowledge of Latin isn't valuable (I'd have to be a complete maroon to deny that). Or that it isn't in many contexts a ... mmm ... de facto necessity (ditto). Or that in some contexts like the formal study of medieval philosophy, or Church history, or linguistics or Romance languages, it isn't an absolute necessity (mega-dittoes ... Greek). Nor did I say the use of Latin is dead (duh). And I don't even have a problem with Latin's normativity within the Church (not my call, obviously, but I wouldn't even if it were my call).

But I nevertheless, and I'm repeating myself now, DO think it is useless to pretend Latin is either anybody's native language (costing it "intelligibility points," which matters a great deal for an act of common worship open to all, the schoolman and the serf alike) or the *universal* language of learning (which counts for more on philosophical matters). And I think it's just not true to pretend that use of Latin contributes to reverence -- I think that gets cause and effect backwards.

Yes, Meg, I of course understand what "Consubstantialum patri" means. But only because I know that it's Latin for "one in being with the Father."

al

"One in being" doesn't really mean the same thing as consubstantial, though, hence the Nicene Creed. If you have to make reference to the Latin then, and the scholastic clarifications, to indicate to someone (particularly someone raised in a New Age environment) that "One in Being" must mean for Catholics more than simply "sharing the attribute of existing"--that Christ and God the Father share the same nature, then what's the point of skimping on the translation?

Tim Ferguson

When I was a child, I had no idea what "trespasses" meant in the Our Father (were we asking to be forgiven for walking across God's front yard without permission?). I asked my mother. In two minutes, she explained it, much as her father had explained it to her 40 years prior.

If we used the word "consubstantial" in the Creed we said each Sunday, the same thing would occur. It would not remain unknowable except to the wise old philosophy majors and Latinists. Like chess, it would take a few moments to explain and a lifetime to understand. Most people aren't stupid.

RP Burke


Now that should turn the bold face off.

charles R. Williams

"Being" is used in the current creed in a philosphical sense and so even if people recognize it as a common English word they do not necessarily understand what it means. It is not really necessary for every layman to understand every single phrase in the creed to profess it with the Church. None of us understands all that the Church teaches.

"Consubstantial" has the advantage that it is a technical philosophical term addressing a deep and critical theological issue. People should know that there is much about our faith they don't understand. They have a lifetime to explore it. Maybe they'll ask questions.

Fr. Totton

RE: consubstantial v. "one in being" (or, as the AP had it, "in one being") - I am not convinced that "consubstantial" is "an ugly roadblock of a word," but then, I am no English major. My point in this discussion is that Liturgiam Authenticam called for a more faithful rendering of the Latin text AS WELL AS a development of a "sacred vernacular" - a language which employs the words of the vernacular language, but elevates the speech and thought above the "everyday" vernacular. This adaptation - and I cannot wait to see how many more - undermines that request. No doubt this is a step forward, but it may also be a stalling tactic - perhaps done with the full knowledge that Cardinal Arinze will send it back again!

As far as Catholics in Public life, what has changed? I guess their excellencies have decided not to decide, and still, they have made a "choice"!

tk

Believe it or not, this was a feature story on the local NYC NBC News this AM. they even gave a sample of the changes...

Cornelius AMDG

I would have preferred "of one substance" "of the same substance" "of the same essesnce" or "of one essence." All are clearer that "one in being" and all are more melifluous than "consubstantial." The last one is how the Orthodox translate the original Greek term homoousious. But all in all, the new translation is a big improvement.

John Rayner

Consubstantial is the word I have used all my life.
Can people understand the word "Substance"?
Can they understand the word "Substantial"?
Aren't drugs dangerous substances?
Can they understand the word "Conflict"?
What about "Context"?
So what is the prefix "Con..."?
Broaden it just a bit and one gets:-
"Consubstantial"
Lex Orandi,...Lex Credendi
"One in Being". Islam didn't get beyond that! Although it certainly is true that in the one Being there are three Persons.

Father Ethan McCarthy

I like the word "consubstantial." It is a beautiful word. What makes "one in being" more beautiful?

Moreover, many of you who don't like the word "consubstantial" are probably DREs and phoney liturgists. They think they do all the catechisis. I'm the one that stands up at the pulpit and teach. I can teach them consubstantial.

darwincatholic

I suppose I shall instantly be discarded, since I was a Classics major rather than an English major... However it seems worth noting that the issue here seems to be between stating a belief with imprecise but familiar words versus with precise but unfamiliar words.

"One in being" could mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people. The words may not be scary, but they could mean many different things.

"Consubstantial", in part by virtue of not being a term of common use, is precise in the extreme -- though I'm sure that some people would provide explanations of it sufficiently vague to lose any precision.

Perhaps one of the issues is that English has never had a formal philosophical vocabulary, nor does it have the word building habit of German, Greek or Latin which allows the compilation of a word like 'consubstantial' without sounding a bit unfamiliar.

darwincatholic

Out bold out!

anonymous

one in being / consubstantial:

It took us almost 400 years to figure out and decide on the word "consubstantial" (homoousious). Its worth taking the 35 seconds it takes to explain the meaning of the word.

Besides, "one in being" requires just as much explanation as consubstantial, so why not just maintain our treasured heritage?

Julia

"Consubstantial" is not a Latin word; it's an English word. If we must get rid of all English words derived from Latin because Americans don't understand Latin then we must also get rid of:

Condominium
Confluence
Constitution
Confection & confetti
Conference
Conceive
Contra(con)ception
Constitution

Substance
Substitute
Stance
Submarine

If you say that Americans have memorized what these words mean and don't realize they are derived from Latin, then why not memorize the meaning of such an important concept as "consubstantial" which is so essential to the creed of Roman Catholics?

Christine

I like the word "consubstantial". Perhaps because I took Romance languages in school the Latin foundation is music to my ears. But I recognize that explanation won't fit everyone.

Again, because the Orthodox have never strayed far from their Patristic roots this kind of terminology is very comfortable for them.

Hopefully, the new Mass translations are a beginning to a much-needed Patristic renewal in the Latin Church.

PF

"Consubstantial" and "one in being" simply do not mean the same thing. The former is a more precise term than the latter. "One in being" is vague, capable of various meanings--it could refer to various kinds of of unities (moral, familial, etc.). "Consubstantial" means "having the same substance" ("ousia" in Greek). There is no doubt about the meaning of the latter; many could and in fact do wonder about what "one in being" means.

Great pains were taken at the Council of Nicaea to secure this word, an understanding of the condign nature of the Trinitarian persons. Are we to refuse it now because some don't like it? But many didn't like it then, either! It was precisely because "being" can bear many senses that one particular term got chosen by the Council Fathers. As Pope Benedict XVI has so often said in his writings defending the use of philosophical terms in the formulation of doctrine: these terms do not do away with the mystery; they rescue it from "allegorization" and ambiguity.

The only possible alternative to "consubstantial with" would be "one in substance with," which would be okay, but it has the linguistic disadvantage of being a phrase rather than a word, and it's always better to use a single word if one is available: it is simpler and aids understanding--even if it's a multisyllabic word! Consubstantial is perfectly good English, in fact it's excellent English, even though, like many other excellent English terms it has fallen into desuetude because of the pressures of cultural decay. As for the "ugliness" of the term "consubstantial": That judgement is very clearly a matter of taste, which many do not at all share, and it doesn't matter anyway. I don't much care for the sound of the word "hemoglobin," but there is a reason why we have it and it would be foolish to come up with a more euphonious word when we have a perfectly good and functional one already.

Marc

"requiring explanation for many".

Ummm, isn't that why they're Bishops? To teach, govern, and sanctify?

Can you imagine a father saying "I don't think I'll have any literature in the house, because it might lead to situations in which I have to explain something to my children." Sheesh!

George C.

Consubstantial or not, looks to me like Bishop Trautman has prevailed.

And I like the new Anglican-style prayers. Reminds me of Thomas Cranmer, who gave his life so the British could pray the Mass in their own language.

And with your spirit!

Will

While this tread is still alive, is there anyone out there who has a copy of the draft translation? Some Catholic news site and the Tablet web site posted it in early June, I think, but they have taken it down. Did anyone download it? I would love to see the whole text.

Julia

Am I the only one who notices the growing imprecision of word usage resulting in the increasing sloppiness of crossword puzzles? Time after time, there are clues that are not on the mark - they are only kind of on the mark revealing the compiler's unfamiliarity with the word's precise meaning in literature. The guys/gals who write crossword puzzles seem to be "googling" synonyms instead of relying on good dictionary definitions and extensive personal familiarity with exact word usage that can only be gained from a lifetime of reading. Or they are substiting long phrases that don't rely on word knowledge at all.

Maybe that's why puns are not so much in evidence anymore. Fewer and fewer people get why they are funny.

Call me Ms Crank, but I think we are losing our ability to pick up on nuances of meaning and are therefore dismissing them as unnecessary. Learning takes effort; it isn't all about self-esteem.

A recent Confirmation here in Belleville ended up with kids (among other things) not knowing who Matthew, Mark, Luke and John were. Bishop Braxton did not sugarcoat the obvious deficiencies of the kids' prep and everybody is mad at the Bishop and not at the DREs. Sad.

Fr. Totton

Maybe the NCR ought to do a piece on that mean old bishop for expecting CONFIRMANDI to have some idea who the Evangelists are! Sheesh!

Roger Evans

A lot of imprecision here.

Despite the philosophy major's recollections above, the Book of Common Prayer has never had *consubstantial*. It was "being of one substance with the Father."

And Thomas Cranmer did not "give his life so the British could pray the Mass in their own language." He explicitly gave his life in denial of the Catholic faith and in opposition to the sacrifice of the Mass. He spoke at length on the subject just before his execution.

Randy

I agree with "being of one substance with the Father." That is the way I learned it as a protestant. I am not sure why that was not considered.

I do think the abortion pols thing is a sleeping issue. Quietly more and more Bishops will take a stand on more and more issues. In Cananda we have seen politicans denied communion because they supported same sex marriage. It was in a small rural diocese with a conservative bishop. Still they young bishops tend to be very orthodox and the trend is for this practice to grow over time. Yes it means partisan politics will creep into the church. That is better than the culture of death creeping in. Both already have of course but which should we be most worried about?

Mila

I don't see why so many people have a problem with "consubstantial". Or why it's such a hard thing to explain to people who supposedly will have no idea what it means. There is no doubt that the term is more accurate than "one in being". However, if the bishops still think the Catholic faithful can't understand it, they could go with what's been done in Spanish, where it's rendered "de la misma naturaleza que el Padre", i.e. "of the same nature as the Father".

Cathy

Changing the subject a bit...

We've done a little bit of traveling around the States. We live in St. Louis, but have attended mass in many other cities. A few years ago minor changes were made to the mass. As we traveled about, we noticed how unevenly these changes were implemented. I'm concerned that these new changes will be just as poorly implemented. I think when we go to mass in various places, it will be even more of a guessing game. Am I the only one who has noticed this???

As an aside to Julia, we also attended a confirmation this spring by Bishop Braxton, but in another town in the diocese. I was quite impressed by his homily. The kids seemed fairly knowledgeable, despite having grown up in a parish rife with liturgical abuses! (Which, by the way were totally corrected that evening in the Bishop's presence, but completely reappeared two days later on Sunday. Alas.)

Cathy

Dave

Just my two cents:

I always liked "one in being" because of the word "being." To be. To exist. By saying the word over and over again I've come to more deeply appreciate the wonder of faith and of God's three-in-one being-ness. God IS and He IS triune. It's blowing my mind right now just typing this.

"Consubstantial" takes away that focus on being and refocuses on substance, which I don't know would have been as helpful to my understanding of the trinity. Perhaps the Philo majors (and minors) out there--I took my required two semesters--and the theologians could explain why a focus on substance is more proper.

Christine

For Randy:

"That is the way I learned it as a protestant. I am not sure why that was not considered."

But you are no longer protestant, no?

For Dave:

"Consubstantial" has a very different nuance from just the concept of "being." Put yourself back several centuries when the great Athanasius was thundering against the heretics who claimed Christ was only human.

That fact that Jesus, the second person of the Trinity, is "con-substantial" with the Father, i.e, sharing the same essence or substance of the Godhead as the Father, is very important.

M.Z. Forrest

I hope not to get stoned here, but I agree with the bishops. I have yet to see anyone attempt to argue that "one in being with the Father" is wholly deficient. While certainly more precise, consubstancial is still an arbitrary change. Arbitrary changes often come across as silly, or they come across as the teacher having uncertainty over the matter being discussed. Admittedly there is no uncertainty on this matter - in most matters where this perception occurs there is no ambiguity - but that doesn't change the fact that the only thing gained is with an audience that already understood what "one in being with the Father" meant.

PF

Dave:

The problem is, "being" doesn't simply mean existence. That is one of many meanings. As Aristotle said famously in the METAPHYSICS, "being is said in many ways." The reason why "substance" was a necessary word used by the Fathers of Nicaea, and why I think it is necessary to go back to now, is because of the possible confusion between possible meanings.

For example, in one sense all human beings are "one in being." That is, we all share the same common nature of humanity. "Nature" or "essence" is one of the possible meanings of "being." But no two human beings are "one in substance." Each human person is a substance unto himself. Not so with the divine Persons: while distinct hypostatically (i.e., personally) they are of the same substance, i.e., share one act of existence. It was really just this confusion between essence (as common) and substance (as unique) that forced the Fathers' hands in going for "homoousios" ("consubstantialis"), even though there were some difficulties there. To make the matter even more maddeningly difficult, it should be noted that "essence" and "substance" can be used as synonymous--yet the line has to be drawn somewhere. What both Greek and Latin Fathers agreed on ardently was that it was insufficient to state simply that the Persons of the Trinity are simply of the same nature, where nature is something common to many. That is true, but not enough: orthodox believers must also affirm that the divine Persons have but one existence.

If "being" could only mean "existence," there would be no problem. As it is, "being" is polyvalent and needs to be made more exact in theology and worship.

Christine

"While certainly more precise, consubstancial is still an arbitrary change."

It certainly has deeper historical roots in the Christian East, which is high on the Vatican's list of ecumenical priorities.

Aimee Milburn

"I would have preferred "of one substance" "of the same substance" "of the same essence" or "of one essence." All are clearer that "one in being" and all are more melifluous than "consubstantial.""

I can agree with that, though I don't mind "one in being." "Consubstantial," however, is not a word that sticks easily in my mind - and I'm a graduate student in theology.

The mere length of this thread and variety of arguments leads me to believe that no choice is going to be a perfect choice, maybe because we're trying to put into words something that is really inexpressible.

Susan

You all are ignoring the colloquial problems with the word substance as well. God is not substance like apple pie or drugs. Ooh, let's talk Aristotle during the next homily.

...Or NOT. I agree with "one in being"--it isn't perfect, but no language is perfect in expressing the reality of God.

It's an art.

Now let's read some Amos and love on to other issues, shall we?

PF

Susan,

What makes you think "substance" is an unworthy term to use with respect to God? Human beings are animals, too, yet that doesn't make us cockroaches. The term "substance," frankly, has an immovable place in Christian theology, thanks to the Church fathers and early councils. If it seems to you to reduce God to something like apple pie that may be because you don't know the history of the term's use or the theology it helps express.

As for love, I am fairly certain we're all in favor of that. Some of us just thinking about God shouldn't interfere with loving him.

As for the mellifluousness of the term, Aimee, don't you agree that's a matter of taste? Seriously, I find it a perfectly likable term. So do many others. Why should my taste or yours count for anything? Doesn't the inherited tradition count for anything? "One in being" was simply never used before the revised liturgy of Pope Paul VI, because of the vagueness of the phrase.

Dave

Thanks Christine and PF--very helpful.

I suppose that this is where being Catholic becomes either wonderful or absurd, depending on who you talk to. My mother, raised Seventh Day Adventist, would say that she believes in God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit and that's enough for her. The minutiae of how exactly that works is irrelevant. I suspect that many many Catholics feel similarly.

So I guess my question is: How do we get people caring about such important distinctions?

George C.

Roger is wrong about Cranmer. After torture from the Catholic queen's government. he recanted all of his Protestantisms. He was burnt anyway. While he was burning, he raised his hand, to remind the witnesses of his writings. Since his only significant writing were English translations of the liturgies of the Church, later observers viewed that as his true and lasting legacy to Christiandom.

As we seek to restore ancient and scriptural meanings to our Mass and
other liturgies, it is worthwhile to recall the cost of previous liturgical conflicts. Were they worth their costs in lives and possibly lost souls? I think not.

Julia

I think what PF is saying can be compared to this: all of us are one in being (constituting) the Body of Christ. But we are not substantially the same as each other - as are the 3 Persons in the Trinity.

The 1965 Missal which was rushed to print used (I believe) the English translations found in the dual language missals of the time. The Creed says:

"Born of the Father before all ages. God of God, Light of Light, true God of true God. Begotten, not made, of one substance with the Father."

"And He became flesh by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary: and was made Man."

Mike Petrik

The problem with "one in being" is that it is more poetic than precise. While I enjoy poetry, actually few people do. One reason is that it is almost always difficult to interpret and is usually subject to different interpretations. Consequently, people tune it out. The phrase "one in being" does not invite the inquiry "what does that mean" precisely because people assume it means something either too profound or too vague for them to understand. This stands in contradistinction to "consubstantial," which suggests a precision that is subject to explanation. I submit that ironically "consubstantial" is actually more accessible than "one in being."

Also the notion proffered above that Latin terminology such as "transubstantiation" was a roadblock to Catholics understanding the Real Presence is belied by the fact that the typical Catholic has never heard of the term. If you don't believe me ask around. The term has not been widely taught in Catholic religious education for 40 years -- kind of like mortal and venial sins -- I guess some people would prefer "big bad deeds" and "little bad deeds."

Aimee Milburn

This is off topic, but responding to another comment:

"Many of you who don't like the word "consubstantial" are probably DREs and phoney liturgists. They think they do all the catechisis. I'm the one that stands up at the pulpit and teach. I can teach them consubstantial."

I can understand the frustration of priests who have both authority and good training but have to deal with those who don’t – often their own staff members, who have influence over the parish through their positions. It’s created a lot of problems for a lot of good priests.

It is also true, however, that parish work is not easy and there's not a lot of good training out there for DRE's and liturgists. It's often completely untrained people who get put into those jobs, because there aren't any trained people available. I know because I was one, stuck into a music director job as a new Catholic, and left to flounder on my own trying to figure out how to do it. I eventually learned - but it was not an easy process.

For theology, there are the beginnings of some good graduate programs out there for training Catholic school teachers and parish DRE’s and the like, such as the one I'm in, the Augustine Institute in Denver. I can vouch for its orthodoxy and union with the Magisterium.

When it comes to music for liturgy, however, there is not yet one single music program aimed at training people in Catholic Church sacred music and liturgical theology and spirituality. Not one.

This isn’t just my opinion, though it is my experience. I attended a workshop on Gregorian Chant a couple of years ago given by Msgr. Robert Skeris of the Church Music Association of America, and he told us this during the workshop. Most parish music directors today trained at secular colleges and universities, and have no formal training in liturgical music, theology, or spirituality. The same goes for most composers of Catholic music today.

It's a bad situation that, in my opinion, is a main detriment to the quality of worship today. St. Pius X saw this problem 100 years ago, and called for the founding of institutes dedicated to training musicians in sacred music, theology, and spirituality. But it has yet to happen.

I pray that someday soon some group of dedicated liturgical musicians, such as those involved in the Church Music Association of America, will answer his call and found just such an institute in this country. Then, along with good translations for the mass, we may see an improvement in the quality of worship.

simon

I am so happy to see the restoration of the traditional -- and Biblical -- phrase:

"Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul [servant] shall be healed."

These are, of course, the words of the marvelous Roman Centurion, which prompted Our Lord Himself to declare that He had not found greater faith anywhere in the House of Israel. Among the many, many blunders of the slapdash 1970 translation, the botch job on this one particularly sticks in my craw. Now it has been fixed.

Alleluia!

simon

I am so happy to see the restoration of the traditional -- and Biblical -- phrase:

"Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul [servant] shall be healed."

These are, of course, the words of the marvelous Roman Centurion, which prompted Our Lord Himself to declare that He had not found greater faith anywhere in the House of Israel. Among the many, many blunders of the slapdash 1970 translation, the botch job on this one particularly sticks in my craw. Now it has been fixed.

Alleluia!

Christine

"So I guess my question is: How do we get people caring about such important distinctions?"

Some very much needed remedial catechesis. It is important to understand WHO we worship. The fact that so many Christians don't today has led to a lot of syncretism a la, "all religions are basically the same."

Aimee Milburn

"As for the mellifluousness of the term, Aimee, don't you agree that's a matter of taste? Seriously, I find it a perfectly likable term. So do many others. Why should my taste or yours count for anything? Doesn't the inherited tradition count for anything? "One in being" was simply never used before the revised liturgy of Pope Paul VI, because of the vagueness of the phrase."

Yes, PF, arguments that boil down to "taste," i.e. personal preference, can muddy the waters. And the inherited tradition counts for a lot.

I'm a convert, and love tradition. But I don't know everything there is to know about it, including the tradition of what words or phrasings have been used in the mass historically. This thread has been a useful experience for me, for that reason, including your comments.

There are different senses of tradition, and this one, the tradition of how the mass is said, seems to be of the kind that can evolve and change. And conversations like these help the process along, as the Church encounters new historical circumstances. It's a bit moot for the time being, as the bishops have made a decision, but worth discussing so we understand all the ins and outs of it.

Christine

"Now let's read some Amos and love on to other issues, shall we?"

Susan, if you'll just give me a minute to fetch my love beads and guitar I'll be back atcha ....

Now, together with our Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholic brethren and sistren let's all chant "ho-mo-ou-sious, ho-mo-ou-sious", that good 'ole mark of Nicene Orthodoxy of East and West !!

RC

Unlike "one in being", it is not possible to gloss over "consubstantial" without effort and think you've understood it.

Byzantine-rite Catholics, coming from a tradition that knows its Greek better than we do, translate homoousion with "of one substance with the Father". I suggest Rome make the bishops do the same.

Fr. Terry Donahue, CC

I think it is very important to consider the fact that the Latin word being translated - consubstantialem - is not only part of the Mass, but part of the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed.

One of the main reasons for writing that Creed was to express the faith of the Church using words that had _very precise_ meanings (as PF described very well above). This was done to counter and eliminate various heretical interpretations of previous credal expressions of the faith.

I believe that makes the precision of the language used in the translation even _more_ important than the remainder of the text of the Mass.

That's why I think "consubstantial" should be used over "one in being".

Christine

"There are different senses of tradition, and this one, the tradition of how the mass is said, seems to be of the kind that can evolve and change."

Maybe when the Church does a better job of explaining "tradition" versus the greater Catholic "Tradition", under which liturgical rubrics would fall both to "cradle" Catholics and converts (of which I am one) there won't be so much confusion.

I'm guessing that a lot of post-Vatican II Catholics are going to see these changes as a new innovation instead of a return to scriptural and patristic sources because they were never given the basics.

Suibhne

I'm a convert, and love tradition. But I don't know everything there is to know about it, including the tradition of what words or phrasings have been used in the mass historically. This thread has been a useful experience for me, for that reason, including your comments.

There are different senses of tradition, and this one, the tradition of how the mass is said, seems to be of the kind that can evolve and change. And conversations like these help the process along, as the Church encounters new historical circumstances. It's a bit moot for the time being, as the bishops have made a decision, but worth discussing so we understand all the ins and outs of it.

What a great response. The result, I'd say, of thoughful and charitable posts from al, PF, and Christine, who ably took up the cause of "consubsantial" without alienating those with no background in philosophy and theology.

A very enjoyable thread!

Maureen O'Brien

I don't know about y'all, but I'm doing the happy chants.

"And wi-ith your spi-rit..."

"It is ri-ight and ju-ust."

M.Z. Forrest

There is a word for this: tinkering.

That is all this exercise is. The only outwardly expressed goal of all this is to make the text better reflect the Latin. Many seem to be arguing that this means we need a more transliteral version of the mass rather than a more literal version. Personally, if the East currently uses "of one substance", I'm fine with the change, because at least there would be some purpose behind it. If I were acting out the commission I would perhaps eliminate English translations in parts, such as simply saying "Et cum spiritu tuo". That is at least easily teachable without going into theological discussion. It also would bring a universal character to the mass even if only for a tiny part.

Julia

Perhaps the Bishop from Leeds' talk might be used as a basis for a uniform U.S. catechesis from the pulpit when the revisions go into effect? People might be fascinated with the idea of better connecting with our core documents, Scripture, the Fathers and the Councils.

And maybe in a writing to be distriburted, present each change in the "people's part" as a separate paragraph/section and list the references and citations from Scripture, the Councils and the Fathers that justify the reversion. This might also be really helpful in enabling the guy in the pew to address questions from critical or curious non-Catholic family and friends.

Just sayin'.

Christine

Great idea, Julia.

Ryan C

Re: "consubstantial vs. "one in being."

I really don't see what all the fuss is about, nor how the use of "on in being" is a dumbing down of any deep theological truth. "One in being" is just as mysterious a statement on the sacred mystery of the Trinity as "consubstantial," and that's what really matters. Added to this the fact that consubstantial is an awkward term (which would be explained with reference to the current formula anyway), I can see why the bishops preferred the current usage.

I sometimes sense in these types of discussions the belief that we can "capture" God with language. This is an incorrect attitude, as Aquinas points out. There needs to be a balance between the understanding that we can describe God through language, and the recognition that we can never capture the ineffable essense of God completely. That is, there needs to be a balance between mystery and understanding. I guess I'm saying that in wrangling over the intricacies of translation the sense of God's mystery can become clouded.

What's more important regarding the Creed is that people at mass are encouraged more strongly to show some sign of reverence at the point where we state our belief in another mystery, that of the Incarnation.

Ron Rolling

Aimee,

"It's a bad situation that, in my opinion, is a main detriment to the quality of worship today. St. Pius X saw this problem 100 years ago, and called for the founding of institutes dedicated to training musicians in sacred music, theology, and spirituality. But it has yet to happen."

I can offer one example. I know of a school which is offering a Masters of Sacred Music through their Theology Department. The program started this past academic year. My application is on hold pending my taking of the GRE (Fall '07 is the earliest I can enter.)

Where? Small, private, Catholic university in an obscure town in NW Indiana. Rumor has it they also have a decent football team there.

Christine

I don't think this has anything at all to do with trying to "capture" God with language. It has to do with faithfulness to the Tradition of the Church.

For me, one of the most significant parts of the Bishop of Leeds' address to the U.S. bishops was:

"The version of Mass that we currently use is clearly far from perfect. Those of you who celebrate Mass in both Spanish and English will know only too well the difference in richness between the two texts. The then bishops of ICEL recognised that from the beginning, and they knew that a revision would be needed. There was an urgent feeling in the early 1970s that the liturgy should be made available to the people as soon as possible, and the work was rushed. The revisiting of this was delayed for practical reasons, but also for ideological ones that caused many bishops grave concern, and that is sometimes forgotten. The chief preoccupation in many minds was, of course, that the liturgy be brought closer to the people. This aim could, and sometimes did, obscure the other aim, which was to preserve and transmit our inherited liturgical tradition and bring our people closer to that. During the initial stages of consultation on the third edition of the Missale Romanum, two theologians wrote to me, quite independently, and shared with me their belief that the Mass texts we currently use had severely diminished our appreciation of the richness of Eucharistic theology. This is clearly something to which we, as bishops, should be sensitive. The Holy Father said something similar during the course of last year’s Synod of Bishops. Of course, if you try to carry a cup of coffee across a room too quickly, much of the contents may spill. This time, we have tried to keep the coffee in the cup."

The move from "consubstantial" to "of one being" denoted a shift in what was handed on ("tradition") from the early centuries.

Surely the laity of today, who excell in so many fields, are capable of relearning this part of their patrimony.

Ryan C

But Christine, if "one in being" captures the same sense of mystery for its speakers, as I think it does, and if the person saying "consubstantial" in the future thinks back to "one in being" in order to translate the term for themselves, as I and a lot of people will probably do, and so reaches a belief in the eternal, equal, and yes substantial relationship betweeen the Father and the Son, then how much of a shift is "one in being" from tradition?

And I didn't mean that the discussion itself is as about the sense of mystery, only that in these types of arguments I think too much focus is laid on linguistic precision compared to enabling equivalent feelings of mystery. Thus I think it's more important that the bishops encourage kneeling at "and became man."

Now to me, "one in being" provokes as much awe as "consubstantial" and more directly so, since there is no extra jump in translating the complex theological term into more common parlance. Whatever the Church decides in the end is fine, but the bishops are part of the decision making process, and I can just see where they're coming from on this.

Mike Petrik

"One in being" is just as mysterious a statement on the sacred mystery of the Trinity as "consubstantial...."

Well perhaps, but not in the same way. The word "consubstantial" is mysterious because few Christians know its definition, but once the definition is explained, the concept's deeper and proper mystery becomes apparent. "One in being" is a phrase that is linguistically mysterious. One cannot normally define a phrase the way one can a word. As I mentioned above the tone of this phrase is poetic or lyrical at the expense of precision. While I don't think this is a exactly a key issue for the Church, I do think that we live in an age where precision matters. The term "consubstantial" suggests something that is important enough to merit understanding; frankly, "one in being" sounds too vage and innocuous to merit understanding.

simon

If I were acting out the commission I would perhaps eliminate English translations in parts, such as simply saying "Et cum spiritu tuo". That is at least easily teachable without going into theological discussion. It also would bring a universal character to the mass even if only for a tiny part.

I'm not sure that would be within the mandate of ICEL. One thing I've always thought, though, is that Kyrie Eleison should not be translated. The original Greek has been preserved untranslated for centuries in the Latin Mass, so what is the rationale for translating it into English now?

anon

"Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof . . .

I think I've had a raccoon or two enter under my roof, but I've never heard the Lord up there. This is atrocious pidgin English.

Suibhne

This is atrocious pidgin English.

Not sure about that, but it is a proper translation of the centurion's words.

Mike Petrik

"'This is atrocious pidgin English.'

Not sure about that, but it is a proper translation of the centurion's words."

This is the problem with worrying about proper translations. They annoy anonymous experts in pidgin English.

anon

Not sure about that, but it is a proper translation of the centurion's words.

In what way is "Lord I am not worthy to receive you" improper?

One meaning of "receive" is "to admit or welcome guests or visitors." That is a perfectly accurate expression of the Centurion's phrase. Much more importantly, "receive" communicates the importance of the phrase in connection with the taking of Holy Communion, which the "roof" business does not do.

Frankly, I'd be happier with hearing the Novus Ordo celebrated in Latin and be done with the nonsense that is being pushed on the faithful purely for reasons of ideology and obscurantism.

Leo Wong

Our American bishops will ask that “the dew of your Spirit” (Spiritus tui rore) be changed to “the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.” Too bad they didn’t look ahead to today’s first reading, which says,


A strong and heavy wind was rending the mountains
and crushing rocks before the LORD —
but the LORD was not in the wind.
After the wind there was an earthquake —
but the LORD was not in the earthquake.
After the earthquake there was fire —
but the LORD was not in the fire.
After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound.
— 1 Kings 11–12

This is perhaps more familiar in the King James version:

. . . and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.

It would probably have been better to have “consubstantial” instead of “one in being,” since consubstantial is in the Cathechism (nine times), is English (used without flinching into the 20th century), and has a long history in the Faith. To understand “one in being,” “of one being,” “the same nature,” “consubstantial,” etc., one has to go back to the 4th century, and whatever word or phrase is used in the liturgy, “consubstantial” will turn up in the explanation.

I hope that “incarnate” — another word that has to be explained — is in, since “et incarnatus est” is so beautiful in music. Indeed, a great point in favor of an English translation closer to the Latin is that it brings the worshiper not only closer to the Latin Mass but to the music of the past 1000 years before 1969. Expect at least a mini-Renaissance in Catholic worship as a result.

Christopher Fotos

BTW Christopher Fotos: The Creed is not a prayer - it is a formal profession of our belief system as Catholics. Of all the things in the Mass, it should be precise.

Take it up with Fr. Totton, to whom I was responding: I guess what Christopher Fotos is saying is that we shouldn't expect our prayer to speak of profound theological realities! I took his meaning.

I don't buy the association made by several commenters that expressing a prayer or a creed or anything else in soundly rooted English is "dumbing down." I'm actually saying something close to the opposite--scarcely doing more than copying a latin word into its nearest English equivalent is pretty dumb itself.

The English language is not that so poor that clear, strong and true ways cannot be found to say what needs to be said. I am sure the same is true of modern languages generally, if I recall anything from my college German.

diane

From way up above:

Cathy--as far as I can tell, most universities still offer Latin classes. Class size is smallish, though.

Funny you should mention this.

Years ago (mid-'80s) my husband taught world history / western civ at a special state-funded boarding school for gifted teenagers in Louisiana.

The administration hired a classicist part time to teach Latin. They expected little interest in classical languages, so they figured they could get away with a part-time position.

Wrong.

Latin turned out to be the second most popular language after French (which you'd expect to be #1, non?, in a school in Louisiana).

So, the administration bit the bullet and hired the classicist full time. But there was *still* some overflow--two or three classes' worth.

So my husband was drafted to teach Latin classes in addition to his history classes--to help out the poor classicist, who was drowning in work.

Well, that was the '80s--in Catholic Louisiana--so maybe it was a special case. But I dunno. ISTM there's a lot of untapped interest out there.

PF

Anon: You asked, "In what way is "Lord I am not worthy to receive you" improper?"

Well, the Latin that it's translating is "Domine, non sum dignus ut intres sub tectum meum." The only good English translation is "Lord, I am not worthy for you to come under my roof." The whole point of placing this in the Mass just before Communion is to be evocative of these words of the Centurion. By simply saying "...to receive you," the connection to that Gospel passage is entirely lost. It sounds fine, but it doesn't hearken to the Scriptural event, which is what it is meant to do.

The idea is that the Incarnate Son of God--as well as the Father and Spirit by mutual indwelling--come to make their abiding with us. The fact that so many people now take this (more traditional) translation as odd and quirky (along with consubstantial, see supra) just goes to show what Liturgy does--it ingrains certain understandings in people that are hard to shake, and painful when shaken.

But the problem was with the dumbed-down translations that have gotten accepted, not with the more accurate translations. It will take a while to readjust, but I daresay that people will grow very protective of what becomes familiar to them 20 years hence, just as some people are protective now of "one in being" and "...worthy to receive you."

Mike Petrik

"Frankly, I'd be happier with hearing the Novus Ordo celebrated in Latin and be done with the nonsense that is being pushed on the faithful purely for reasons of ideology and obscurantism."

Well, I'm pretty indifferent about Latin, and I admit that this issue is not all that important really, but I do think this statement begs the question as to which translation is nonsense "grounded in ideology and obscurantism." If it the debate itself, then why take a side?

Mike Petrik

PF,
Excellent post.

Mike Petrik

Christopher,
I agree that strong English words are preferable to obscure Latin words when it comes to an English Mass, but that assumes that English words can be found that would convey the meaning intended. I think "one in being" comes close but doesn't quite do the job. Because its ambiguity lends itself to multiple meanings I fear that the typical Catholic assigns it no meaning whatsoever. The virtue of "consubstantial" is that it shouts out the need to be understood.

Ryan C

"One in being" is a phrase that is linguistically mysterious. One cannot normally define a phrase the way one can a word. As I mentioned above the tone of this phrase is poetic or lyrical at the expense of precision."

This is a good point, but at the same time, any definition of consubstantial will have to be in the form of a phrase, which is what the worshipper will go back to in their mind. And I was not so much suggesting that the phrases were equally mysterious in terms of being difficult to understand linguistically, but mysterious in the sense of refering back the Sacred Mystery of the Trinity itself.

I don't mean to argue though, that "one in being" is a perfect phrase - just that "consubstantial" has its issues too, which were valid for the bishops to recognize.

For what it's worth, my grandmother's old mass book, with the Latin on one side and the English on the other, renders the Latin as "being in one substance with the Father." This might be the most felicitous and precise possible translation.

The O.E.D provides a brief account of usage for consubstantial, for anyone who's interested:

"b. Theol. Said of the three Persons in the Godhead; esp. of the Son as being ‘one in substance’ with the Father. Sometimes also said of Christ's humanity in relation to man.

1483 CAXTON Gold. Leg. 25/3 Jhesu cryst..in essence consubstantial by generacion. 1526 Pilgr. Perf. (W. de W. 1531) 198b, The sone..is consubstancial, that is to saye, he is of one nature and substaunce with the father. 1561 T. NORTON Calvin's Inst. I. 30 When the Latines meant to expresse the word Omoousion, they called it Consubstantiall, declaring the substance of the Father and the Sonn to be one, so vsing the word substance for essence. 1667 H. MORE Div. Dial. (1713) 559 St. Augustin..calls the Holy Ghost, The substantial and consubstantial Love of the Father and the Son."

reluctant penitent

'Consubstantial with the Father' is too technical but 'one in being with the Father' is not? Let's really make it simple and use hand-gestures. We can say, "and they are like this" and cross index and middle finger. Or we can use a cocktail analogy: "just as gin and tonic become one drink that daddy needs badly when he comes home, so too the Father and the Son are one." If you want something more Church-appropriate, there's always: "You know the pancakes we're going to devour after this not very filling communal meal we're about to have? Well the pancakes are made from a number of ingredients, which become united in deliciousness on each of your plates. God is sort of like that."

Fr. Shawn O'Neal

Julia brought an interesting point way up near the top about the Roman Missal translation saying "one in substance with the Father". "One in substance" and "consubstantial" have the same amount of syllables, at least. Perhaps we should draw straws to choose between the two. It worked when Matthias was chosen to replace Judas.

For the sake of accuracy, using "substance", "essence", or "nature" would be more precise than using "being". This has been done in Spanish with the use of "naturaleza" which seems best equated with "nature" or "essence". The German uses "Wesen" which follows both "essence" and "nature", also.

Here's one thing I have learned simply from celebrating Mass in Spanish for the past six years and also from having German friends: They know and they accept that liturgical language is a bit antiquated and that the language is not what is used within normal daily exchange, but they use it and accept it. They don't seem to lose sleep about it as we do here in the States. The language of the past is not the same as the language used now, but it works. Old language can bring people to what should be familiar. I believe that whatever language we seek to use is going to work well as long as it brings people to greater communion with the Lord.

One of my elder parishioners has told me that unless the new recommendations do not bring back "vouchsafe", then none of it is worth changing. (ha ha) Now, that's a verb.

Fr. Totton

M.Z. Forrester wrote:

"If I were acting out the commission I would perhaps eliminate English translations in parts, such as simply saying "Et cum spiritu tuo". That is at least easily teachable without going into theological discussion. It also would bring a universal character to the mass even if only for a tiny part."

Agreed! Given that Sacrosanctum Concilium called for the use of the vernacular in the proper (those prayers and readings which change with each Mass) of the Mass, and it presumed the continued use of the mother tongue (Latin) for the Ordinary (those prayers/ statements which remain the same from one Mass to the next) yesterday's vote and all the squabbles that led to it, and this discussion here was never envisioned or intended by the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council!

Steve Schaper

Since the proper authorities have already made the necessary modifications to the Anglican liturgy, so much trouble could have been saved by using -that-. Keep the beautiful language and theological precision, and keep out the politics.

Fr. Totton

Steve, you must have read my mind. I was just trolling around the website over at Our Lady of the Atonement (Anglican Use) Parish and I found this gem in the creed. It would satisfy both those who like "being" and those who like "substance"

begotten not made,
being of one substance with the Father;

Well, maybe not, I guess "being" is taken out of (or is it placed in the proper) context!

katymalone

Is the U.S. the only English-speaking country to make little changes like this? That's the impression I've gotten from pre-vote posts. So "one in being" will be "consubstantial" in New Zealand, Australia,
England, Scotland, Ireland, etc.? Also, I've always pictured the "enter under my roof" to represent Almighty God Himself actually STOOPING to enter at the threshhold of a poor sinner, me. That's a huge concept. I've been whispering it for 35 or so years because "receive" just, to me, isn't as rich in meaning.

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