Missal awaits Vatican approval

By 
  • September 17, 2010

The new English translation of the Mass will be ready for Canadian parishes only when the bishops have Vatican approval for all of the texts and an opportunity to put in place a program to teach people about the changes.

With the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops announcing the new Mass texts will become standard south of the border beginning in Advent 2011, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops has received enquiries about the Canadian timetable.

Missal

Not so fast, said CCCB general secretary Msgr. Patrick Powers in a statement posted to the Canadian conference’s web site.

Canada’s bishops have yet to receive “recognitio” or official approval from the Vatican for adaptations of the Mass for Canada, nor for the liturgical calendar which determines when feast days are celebrated.

“The bishops of Canada cannot select a date for the implementation of the Missal in Canada until all the approved texts, including the adaptations, have been received and the necessary amount of time ascertained for the Canadian Missal to be printed and published,” wrote Powers in an update on the CCCB web site.

Nobody knows when the recognitio will be issued.

Canada is in more or less the same position as every other English-speaking country except the United States, a source close to the process internationally told The Catholic Register.

All 11 English-speaking conferences of bishops have received the general text and the order of Mass, but without the national proper and an approved liturgical calendar they can’t go about publishing an ordo or sacramentary. Only the United States has received recognitio for its national proper, and has therefore made public its plans to implement the new translation in December 2011.

South Africa obtained special permission two years ago to partially implement the new translation — using the new order of the Mass but still with the old lectionary and liturgical calendar. New Zealand plans to also begin a partial implementation this Advent.

All the conferences of bishops are making plans to prepare people for the changes with a catechetical program. The International Commission on English in the Liturgy has prepared a blueprint for teaching about the revised English liturgy called “Become One Body, One Spirit in Christ.” The program can be previewed at www.becomeonebodyonespiritinchrist.org.

The CCCB has a catechism program prepared, but can’t go to press before receiving the Vatican’s recognitio.

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