Advent Season Will Bring Changes for Catholics
Parishes will begin using revised Roman Missal Nov. 27.
This year, Catholics across the English-speaking world will begin the Advent season reciting from a revised version of the Roman Missal, which contains prayers and instructions for the celebration of Mass.
Most Catholics are aware of the changes, said Linda O’Connor, liturgy and religious education coordinator at St. Patrick’s Church in Lemont.
“They’re certainly familiar if they’re attending Mass or reading Catholic literature,” she said. “It’s been talked about a lot. We’re doing articles in the bulletins and speaking about it in the Mass.”
According to the United States Council of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), the English edition of the reformed liturgy of the Second Vatican Council (popularly known as “Vatican II") was published in the U.S. in 1973 and revised again in 1975.
In 2000, in accordance with a decree from Pope John Paul II, the church began the process of further revising the texts. As a result of those efforts, Catholic parishes in the U.S. will implement The Roman Missal, Third Edition, on Nov. 27, the first day of the Advent season.
At St. Patrick’s, parishioners have been introduced to some of the revisions already.
In one of the St. Patrick’s bulletins, O’Connor tells parishioners “these new words may seem awkward at first but will feel comfortable with time. Knowing that we will be in communion with the original prayers and with other Catholics around the world can help us look forward to the changes with enthusiasm.”
The USCCB offers examples of some of the changes in the new Roman Missal, with comparisons between the current and new texts at http://old.usccb.org/romanmissal/examples.shtml. A few samples:
- During the opening portion of Mass, congregants who have traditionally answered the priest’s greeting of “The Lord be with you” with “And also with you,” will now respond with “And with your spirit.”
- Among the changes in the new translation of the Nicene Creed, the words “one in Being with the Father” now reads, “consubstantial with the Father” and “by the power of the Holy Spirit he was born of the Virgin Mary,” will now be recited as “and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary.”
- Congregants will now answer the priest’s recitation of “Let us proclaim the mystery of faith” with “We proclaim your death, O Lord, and profess your Resurrection until you come again,” rather than the former “Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ will come again.”
Parishioners will also hear other changes in the Mass, including their priest’s greetings, the act of penitence, recitations before and after the Gospel, the preparation of gifts, Eucharistic prayers and more.
The revisions reflect “a more accurate translation that what the Mass was,” O’Connor said.
According to the most recent bulletin for SS. Cyril & Methodius Parish, music director Mira Sojka- Topor has been teaching the “Gloria,” “Holy, Holy, Holy,” “Memorial Acclamation” and “Lamb of God” using the new translation of the Roman Missal.
Parishioners have the opportunity to become more familiar with the text of the new translation by reading the copy that will be in the SS. Cyril & Methodius Parish bulletin.
In the St. Alphonsus Catholic Church bulletin, officials said they plan to use the next few weeks to explain what is changing and why the changes are taking place in the Roman Missal.
"We are asking that you remain patient and try to listen with open hearts to what is being presented," the bulletin states. "By doing so, we will be able to move into celebrating the Revised Roman Missal with faith and joy."