LOS ANGELES (CNA) — The new translation of the Mass promises to help Catholics “enter more deeply into the mystery of the faith” in a way that continues the Second Vatican Council’s liturgical renewal, Archbishop José Gomez has said.
“We become what we pray,” he wrote in his Aug. 20 column in the Los Angeles archdiocesan paper The Tidings. “The prayer of our Eucharistic worship is meant to make us become more like Jesus Christ.”
The words Christians pray, and how they pray, shape their beliefs and how they live out their beliefs, he explained.
Those words will now change in Catholic parishes across the United States with the implementation of the third edition of the Roman Missal, set to take place on Nov. 27, the First Sunday of Advent.
The new translation is an opportunity for “a new Eucharistic catechesis,” Archbishop Gomez said. The change gives Catholics the chance to “reflect more deeply” on the meaning of Christian worship.
“In our Eucharistic worship, we join our own sacrifices to his. We make our lives a prayer of self-offering — as he did on the cross. In union with Jesus, we offer ourselves to the Father as a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving.”
The new missal will mean Catholics will learn together “how to pray our familiar prayers in a new way, using new language,” the archbishop explained.
Archbishop Gomez describes how the new translation “restores the beauty of the original Latin” and lets Catholics hear “the many scriptural allusions that are woven into the fabric of the Mass.”
It helps unite worship on earth to “the liturgy of heaven,” he added.
The U.S. bishops’ conference has created a special website for the new missal at http://www.usccb.org/romanmissal.
Some of the changes concern the consecration of the Eucharist. When the priest says “The Lord be with you,” the congregation presently responds “And also with you.”
Under the new version, they will reply, “And with your spirit.”
“This is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Happy are those who are called to his supper,” the priest now says after the consecration.
“Behold the Lamb of God; behold him who takes away the sins of the world. Blessed are those called to the supper of the Lamb,” he will say under the new missal.
Instead of “Lord, I am not worthy to receive you,” the congregation will say, “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof.” This is a more explicit reference to the words of the centurion in Luke 7.
The Roman Missal resulted from years of work by the Vatican and bishops in the United States, Canada, England and elsewhere. The Vatican’s Vox Clara Committee and the International Commission on English in the Liturgy also worked on the new texts.
Archbishop Gomez said the translators “did a beautiful job.”
“They have given us prayers that will help us to lift up our hearts and minds to give glory and praise to God in language that is reverent and inspiring.”