Friday, December 07, 2012


Would it be licit to celebrate the Office and the sacraments, including Holy Mass, in the vernacular in the EF?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Summorum Pontificum provides for the use of the liturgical books in force in 1962. As the only edition of the books in force in 1962 were in Latin, my understanding is that Latin must be used.

The Office is different for a lay person as this is effectively a private devotion (as it's not something the laity are bound to do) so the vernacular could be used. I believe a cleric is bound to say the Office in Latin.


11:36 AM  
Blogger carl said...

Chris is correct. The only permission for vernacular in the EF Mass is the readings at low mass. Priests and deacons who use the EF breviary to fulfil their obligation must use the Latin. But I, a layman, choose to use a 64 English translation of the Roman Breviary for my devotion.

4:37 PM  
Anonymous Fr Francis said...

I am sure that this is not licit - and I'm also afraid that Richard is mistaken on two counts.

Firstly as well as a gradual translation of the Mass into English, a number of modifications were made in the mid 1960's. For example by 1965 Psalm 42 ("Judica me , Deus...") was omitted before the Confiteor.

So in 1965 there was a curious mixture. The Eucharistic Prayer (the Roman Canon) was in Latin - but most of the rest of Mass was in English.

The translation too was a bit of a mixture. "Et cum spiritu tuo" was incorrectly translated as "And with you". But "Domine non sum dignus...etc" was translated literally and somewhat archaically as "Lord I am not worthy that Thou shouldst enter under my roof, say but the word, and my soul shall be healed."

I remember starting the Sixth Form in September 1967 and a few months later, the Eucharistic Prayer was in English.

But by 1972, the Missa Normativa of Pope Paul VI was in use - rather than a translation and modification of the Usus Antiquus.

Also of course, Latin is still the official language of the Catholic Church. In fact it is recommended that it be used for the Ordinary Form of the Mass when there is a large gathering of people who speak different languages.

When I was in Cracow a few years ago, there was a regular Sunday Mass in Latin for the benefit of people who did not speak Polish. For most western Europeans, Latin is a bit easier to follow and get your tongue round than Polish!

10:09 PM  

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