Jan 16, 2020

Holy See validates new French translation of Roman Missal

A new French translation of the Roman Missal has been approved by the Vatican. According to a November 6 report by La Croix International, a French language Catholic newspaper, Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect for the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, signed the confirmation decree approving the new translation of the third edition of the Roman Missal in early November.

In an interview with La Croix, Bishop Guy de Kermimel of Grenoble-Vienna, president of the Episcopal Commission for Liturgy and Sacramental Pastor Care, explained that the approval “completes a work that began in 2002, in response to the Liturgiam Authenticam, instruction ‘for the right implementation on the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council.’ This text, published in 2001 at the request of John Paul II, called for greater accuracy in Latin translation…. There were many round trips to Rome, then came Pope Francis’s ‘motu proprio’ Magnum principium in 2017, which gave back a flexibility to the translation, according to a triple fidelity: fidelity to the Latin text, fidelity to the language of translation and fidelity to the understanding of the faithful.”

Bishop de Kereminmel noted there were a few significant changes to the missal. “For the faithful,” he said, quoted by La Croix, the new Missal “changes little. For example, in the Creed, the ‘of the same nature’ is replaced by ‘consubstantial.’ In the anamnesis, ‘We proclaim your death, we announce your resurrection’ becomes ‘We proclaim your death, we proclaim your resurrection.’”

As reported by La Croix, Bishop de Kermimel said that the new missal “should be able to be implemented for Advent 2020 and become definitive in the parishes of France from May 24, 2021, the memorial of ‘Mary, Mother of the Church.’”

In his interview with La Croix, the bishop said the new translation will help the faithful to better encounter Christ in the liturgy.

“This change will be beneficial if it helps us to better understand what we are saying,” he said, “if it allows us to rediscover the meaning of the Eucharistic liturgy, while being aware that it will always be difficult to articulate the mystery of God with our words.”

The Editors