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28 April 2010

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Charlotte (Matilda)

Our pastor has always introduced Latin into the liturgy (Novus Ordo, not Tridentine) by saying that it puts both English speakers and Spanish speakers at the same disadvantage! His point is valid. By saying the Novus Ordo Mass in Latin, he doesn't have to offer twice as many masses to accommodate English and Spanish speakers, he just provides booklets with translations of the Latin in both English and Spanish. Like you said, very progressive!

Rebekka

At the cathedral here the kyrie, gloria and agnus dei are sung in Latin during the summer, and the readings + Gospel are read both in English and in Danish, for the benefit of both the locals and the tourists. It's always funny to suddenly find out that the couple next to you in the pew aren't Danes, when it's time to do the sign of peace, suddenly they bust out some unidentifiable foreign language.

Something that always confuses me, though, is that these parts of the Mass apparently aren't sung in English, but are just recited. At least all the English-language Masses I've been to, both in England and in California. Anyone know why this is? IMO it seriously detracts from the beauty of it - no matter the language I always get goosebumps when the whole congregation is belting it out.

At the local church I attend (I don't usually go to the cathedral unless I need to attend Mass an hour earlier) I haven't quite figured out the rhyme or reason the priest uses to choose whether the aforementioned parts of the Mass will be sung in Latin or in Danish, but it seems like he likes Latin for feast days and Advent/Lent and other more solemn occasions.

kate

but when latin was the liturgical language, parishes in every city large enough were always ethnically/linguistically divided.

bearing

We have fewer parishes now, what with fewer priests, and are at least superficially more interested in unity and diversity... the time is ripe!

bearing

... and Rebekka, most of the time around here we sing the Agnus Dei whether it's in Latin or English, and always sing the Gloria in English (nobody expects us to read/sing the whole thing in Latin, more's the pity.) Kyrie is always sung if it's in Greek, sometimes sung in English.

MelanieB


Kate, it is true that historically parishes were ethnically divided but returning to a liturgical use of to Latin doesn't necessarily mean turning back the clock in all respects. It is possible to find ways to keep things we have now which are improvements (such as multicultural parishes) but find other things that were formerly discarded which are worthy of keeping as well.

Our last parish had absorbed a large Spanish language community (primarily Dominican) when a neighboring parish was closed. They kept trying to cobble together these bilingual liturgies for Holy Week and Christmas and no one was ever satisfied with them. My husband and I kept pushing for Latin, saying then we could all worship together as one body instead of butchering the Mass. Sadly, there wasn't enough enthusiasm and the pastor was unwilling to push past the resistance.

Rebekka

Hmm, I guess I have just been unlucky with my Glorias in English-speaking countries!

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