Thursday, April 12, 2012

New Mass means new missal.

Mass is not Catholic Entertainment, people. It is participatory. We are meant to pray along. It's called "assisting at mass." We all assist the priest by praying along.

It's taken me until April to figure out what to buy. So many of the American missals aren't available yet. I do not understand that.

I've been using an older version of the "Daily Roman Missal" for years. It's one of the earliest published ones where the readings were still from the original 1966 "Jerusalem Bible," which is what Catholics use overseas. It was the first bible updated using the very old Hebrew scrolls found in the caves of Qumran. I love the "Jerusalem Bible." It is an elegant read, at a college reading level. Since the 60's it has been the ONLY bible that did not white-wash all the names for God to "Lord." It is far superior to the "New American Bible" or the "NAB Revised Edition." These are both written at a 6th grade reading level.

Please note, there is more than one Jerusalem Bible. American translators created the "New Jerusalem Bible" by editing the original "Jerusalem Bible" to be "politically correct." Thereby significantly changing the meaning of some passages. It is NOT approved by the Holy See. The European "New Jerusalem Bible" has not been corrupted this way, but was not sold here due to copy-right infringements. Same name, different bible. Still, you can find a copy of it second hand on Amazon now and again.

Anyway, I used the older "Daily Roman Missal" because it had both the "Jerusalem Bible" readings and the mass text in Latin along side the English. I love my Ecclesiastic Latin!

The Catholic Truth Society (CTS) has come out with the New Catholic Bible which contains the original 1966 Jerusalem Bible edited to contain the 1963 Grail Psalms. I plan on buying one as soon as I have a little extra money. I want a compact version to carry with me. This one has been edited to white-wash all the names for God. It makes me sad. I do understand what Cardinal Arinze means about not offending our Jewish brethren. However, my private bible reading shouldn't offend anyone. I wish they'd just changed it in the missals. The Holy Father's guidance was only that God's special names, such as Yahweh, not be used during public worship.

The CTS has put out two missals. Daily and Sunday. These both also use the 1966 "Jerusalem Bible and 1963 "Grail Psalms." There is a seller on Amazon who is carrying CTS items. You can also buy from the CTS website directly. They are set up for sale sand shipping to the US. Prices are marked in both Euros and Dollars.

I purchased the Sunday missal from a local seller on Amazon. It arrived very quickly. This missal is sublime. The text is crystal clear. The images are gorgeous. The rubrics are clear. Just another reason more people need to be using a missal. So few people know what is going on during mass. The rubrics tell you what you should be doing. There are times when I am the only one standing. The English text is right next to Latin text.  It is very easy to follow.

It is not meant to be used in the US. So the texts are slightly different. The US uses the "New American Bible." Mind you, the US recently got approval for NEW translation of the Grail Psalms.  I don't know why. The 1963 Grail Psalms are used in our US version of the Liturgy of the Hours and Christian Prayer. With the (substandard in my opinion) New American Bible texts. The 1963 version is lovely. It reads very well.

The Proper of Saints in the CTS missal is very small. Only a handful of holy days. Not so important for me as a professed Franciscan. We have a two booklet supplement which is meant to be used with the St. Joseph's missals. It contains all the very important saints for me. Still, I think I'll keep my old "Daily Roman Missal" on hand for some of my favorite non-Franciscan saints.

Very few priests announce which Eucharistic Prayer they are going to use. Most parishioners do not pray along making it generally unimportant. So my one recommendation is to enlist the help of a slip of lined paper as a book mark. Write the prayer number with the first line of text and the page number it begins on. It makes it easier to flip to at the appropriate time.

The CTS missal has plenty of additional prayers. The prayers for before and after mass are lovely. As well as the section on not being able to get to mass, which contains a prayer of spiritual communion. Also plenty of guidance texts from various popes and saints.

I do wish they had soft version. Even the leather version of the new CTS bible has a hard core. It does make it easier to use during mass as nothing is bending back. But I like the feel of soft covers better.

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