July 28, 2011 // Uncategorized

Vox Clara works on liturgical translations not included in new missal

By Cindy Wooden

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — As English-speaking parishes around the world await delivery of the new translation of the Roman Missal, the Vatican’s Vox Clara Committee already is at work on additional texts.

The committee, which advises the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments on English translations, met in Rome July 24-26. A committee statement released July 27 said members spent most of their time on a new translation of the prayers bishops use for the chrism Mass, the Holy Week liturgy where the oils used in the sacraments throughout the year are blessed.

In the United States and Canada, the bishops’ prayers for blessing the oils were included in the old missal, which will go out of use on the first Sunday of Advent 2011. To avoid a situation in which bishops would need to pull the old missal off the shelf for the solemn Mass in 2012, the congregation commissioned its own draft translation of the prayers.

The translation was reviewed by the International Commission on English in the Liturgy — which normally drafts the translations — and was revised in consultation with Vox Clara, the statement said. The new text “should be available in the first months of 2012,” it said, and bishops’ conferences can decide whether to adopt the new text for use in their countries, a Vatican official said.

Also at their July meeting, members of Vox Clara “approved plans for several future publications on behalf of the congregation, most notably an interim edition of the ‘Roman Pontifical,'” which contains prayers and rites usually reserved to bishops. In most countries, the chrism Mass blessing of oils is included in the book, rather than in the missal.

The statement said the committee also supported the congregation’s authorization of several editions of the “Missale Parvum,” an abridged version of the Missal traditionally used by priests who are traveling.

“Finally, the commission adopted plans for the revision of the ‘Ratio Translationis’ for the English language,” a translation style guide, “and approved the scope of work in the continuing revision of the translations of the Latin liturgical books of the Roman rite,” the statement said.

The new Roman Missal contains all of the prayers used at Sunday and weekday Masses throughout the year, as well as special Mass prayers for saints’ feast days.

However, the missal does not include texts such as the rite of matrimony, confirmation, baptism or ordination or the text of the Liturgy of the Hours — all of which, eventually, will be translated.

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