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Wednesday, 2 December 2009

More than a year overdue already

Over three years ago, I reported on a letter of the congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, dated 17 October 2006, concerning the words pro multis ("for many") in the words for the consecration of the the chalice at Mass.

The letter states that there is no doubt about the validity of Masses in which the phrase "pro multis" is translated "for all" and that it is a dogma of faith that Christ died on the Cross for all men and women. However, it notes several arguments in favour of an accurate translation of "pro multis" and concludes that the phrase should be properly translated in the future.

The other day, a priest friend pointed out to me that there was a timespan included in the letter:
The Bishops' Conferences of those countries where the formula "for all" or its equivalent is currently in use are therefore requested to undertake the necessary catechesis for the faithful on this matter in the next one or two years to prepare them for the introduction of a precise vernacular translation of the formula pro multis (e.g, "for many", "per molti", etc.) in the next translation of the Roman Missal that the Bishops and the Holy See will approve for use in their country.
Did you notice any catechesis on this matter in your country in the one or two years to October 2008? We are, of course, still waiting for the next translation of the Roman Missal into English, and are likely to be waiting for some time to come.

Is it is now time to start saying "for many"? There wasn't any significant delay or insuperable problem when we were peremptorily told to say "for all" instead of "for all men."
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