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Author Topic: Liturgical Reform  (Read 8366 times) Average Rating: 0
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Br. Max, OFC
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« on: November 24, 2003, 03:27:20 PM »

When was the last time the Orthodox "church" experienced a liturgical reform?  I see that there is a good bit of objection to the "new" catholic mass and I'm left wondering, how much of the objection is substantive and how much is esthetics and how much is tradition.
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« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2003, 03:57:03 PM »

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When was the last time the Orthodox "church" experienced a liturgical reform?
 

Why the mock inverted commas around the word church?

All traditional rites, Eastern and Western Catholic, evolved gradually - organically. The Byzantine and Roman rites, evolving independently, basically were fully formed by the late Middle Ages.

The only two Orthodox reforms by fiat I can think of both 1) were very cautious and conservative, only cleaning up minor nonessentials and leaving the rite looking basically the same and 2) caused schisms anyway. And these are:

GÇó the Nikonian reform: an attempt of the Patriarch of Moscow, Nikon, to do a little editing (based on the Greek usages of the time) of the Russian service books in the 1600s, begetting the Old Believer schism.
GÇó the adoption of the modern (Gregorian) calendar by some Orthodox churches in the 1920s for fixed-date feasts such as Christmas.

Quote
I see that there is a good bit of objection to the "new" catholic mass and I'm left wondering, how much of the objection is substantive and how much is esthetics and how much is tradition.

A well-known argument among traditionalists that you may know already is that the new Mass is based on a lie in its vernacular paraphrases (not translations): the consecration prayer was changed from 'for you and for many' to say 'for you and for all'. (In Latin it's fine.)

Unlike the gradual changes that take place in rites, it was invented whole cloth by a committee, like the first Protestant services were.

I'm sure you're familiar with the 'it's focused on man, not on God' arguments.

Like Cranmer's first Prayer Book it can be construed as orthodox about the Mass as Sacrifice and the Real Presence but unlike the old rites it has holes in it big enough to drive a coach and four through, which pretty much describes RC practice in the last 30+ years.
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« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2003, 06:23:13 PM »

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Why the mock inverted commas around the word church?

serge: I assure you I did not place them around church to MOCK at all.  I was just unsure if I should say church considering that there are many traditions and churches in the eastern tradition and did not want to leave anyone out!

Now, on the “for many/for all” debate, as far as I can see since the word in question basically translates multitudes, correct?  If so, would it not be better to error on the side of the universal nature of the gospel than on the side of exclusivity and a restricted church?

How many liturgical rites exist in the Eastern Tradition (I hope this word choice goes over better than quotes around church), which are still in use today?  
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« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2003, 07:29:56 PM »

About a year ago, two Bishops of the Church of Greece and a comitee of priests started a project of reforms that was put in practice in the parishes of that diocese:

- Translation of Old Greek to vernacular.
- Introduction of hymns and musical instruments in the liturgy with popular melodies.
- Shortened litanies, elimination of unnecesary prayers or their replacement by some said by lay people.

The movement did not work because of Archbishop Christodoulos opposition. I guess Pope Paul's spirit warned him in his dreams.  Wink

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« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2003, 07:30:28 PM »

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Now, on the “for many/for all” debate, as far as I can see since the word in question basically translates multitudes, correct?  If so, would it not be better to error on the side of the universal nature of the gospel than on the side of exclusivity and a restricted church?

Nice try. No.

Quote
How many liturgical rites exist in the Eastern Tradition (I hope this word choice goes over better than quotes around church), which are still in use today?
 

IIRC, seven:

GÇó Byzantine, used by the Eastern Orthodox
GÇó Coptic, used by the Church of Egypt (Oriental Orthodox)
GÇó Ethiopian, used by the Churches of Ethiopia and Eritrea (Oriental Orthodox)
GÇó Armenian, used by the Armenian Apostolic Church (Oriental Orthodox)
GÇó Syrian, used by the Syrian Oriential Orthodox Church and, in translation, by the Malankara Church of India, also Oriental Orthodox
GÇó Assyrian, used by the Assyrian Church of the East, the Church of Iraq (formerly known to outsiders as Nestorian)
GÇó Maronite, which may be an offshoot of the Syrian Rite, used by the Church of Lebanon (Catholic)
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« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2003, 07:40:19 PM »

In my opinion the all/many distinction is retarded.  It doesn't matter either way.  Translating it as "many" gives it the idea that Jesus only died for the saved--that's heretical Calvinism.

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« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2003, 07:42:29 PM »

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The all/many distinction is retarded.  It doesn't matter either way.  Translating it as "many" gives it the idea that Jesus only died for the saved--that's heretical Calvinism.

No.

The Byzantine Rite gets it right, BTW.
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« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2003, 07:46:51 PM »

Dear Serge,

The Syrian rite is what is used both in the Syrian and Malankara Orthodox Churches, although the language of celebration varies.  There is, to my knowledge, no difference between the rite as practiced by both Churches that would justify it being case of different rites (for instance, there is no Russian Rite and Greek Rite, only the Byzantine Rite, with regional differences), unlike the Maronite Rite which, while a Syrian rite, is different enough from the default Syrian rite to possibly be a rite of its own.
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« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2003, 07:51:50 PM »

Mor Ephrem,

Thanks! Duly noted above.
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« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2003, 07:57:09 PM »

Quote
The all/many distinction is retarded.  It doesn't matter either way.  Translating it as "many" gives it the idea that Jesus only died for the saved--that's heretical Calvinism.

No.

The Byzantine Rite gets it right, BTW.

I guess we will just have to agree to disagree if you are only going to answer with one word replies.

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« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2003, 09:10:01 PM »

serge: I know what the ancient rites of the church are - I'm not totally Ignorant.  I'm asking for liturgical rites.  The rite of St James, the rite of St Gregory, the rite of st John Chrysostom . . . what are the one's in use in the Eastern church?
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« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2003, 09:11:09 PM »

In my opinion the all/many distinction is retarded.  It doesn't matter either way.  Translating it as "many" gives it the idea that Jesus only died for the saved--that's heretical Calvinism.

anastasios
 Exactly my feeling on the issue.
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« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2003, 09:32:19 PM »

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serge: I know what the ancient rites of the church are - I'm not totally Ignorant.  I'm asking for liturgical rites.  The rite of St James, the rite of St Gregory, the rite of st John Chrysostom . . . what are the one's in use in the Eastern church?

I think you meant to ask about the variety of services within each rite.

I only know something about the Byzantine Rite:

GÇó The Liturgy of St John Chrysostom, the usual order of Mass used since the Middle Ages.
GÇó The Liturgy of St Basil, same basic service, different anaphora (consecration prayer), slightly longer; once the main form of Mass but flipflopped with the one named after Chrysostom sometime in the Middle Ages (source: Hugh Wybrew); today it's used 10 times a year (source: Bishop Kallistos (Ware)) including Sundays during Great Lent (before Easter).
GÇó The Liturgy of St Gregory Dialogos, Pope of Rome, the Liturgy of the Pre-Sanctified Gifts used weekdays during Great Lent
GÇó The Liturgy of St James, rarely used and which I know precious little about.

Scholars and members of the other Eastern Churches can tell you about the services done in their rites.
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« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2003, 09:36:44 PM »

I asked for the liturgical rites which you have just listed for the Byzantine Rite.  Thank you.

I know about the 4 you listed.  They are used in the RCC to some degree or another along with a few others.  I am curious to know what other rites of the Liturgy are in use.
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« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2003, 11:28:14 PM »

The Coptic liturgies are those of Sts. Cyril (derived from the original Liturgy of St. Mark), Gregory the Theologian, and Basil.

The Assyrians' main liturgy (I forget the others) is that of Mar Addai and Mar Mari.

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« Reply #15 on: November 24, 2003, 11:33:25 PM »

http://sor.cua.edu/Liturgy/Anaphora/index.html will give you a sampling of the Anaphorae in use in the Syrian rite.
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« Reply #16 on: November 25, 2003, 12:18:52 AM »

sorry - Mar Addai and Mar Mari?
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« Reply #17 on: November 25, 2003, 01:28:27 AM »

Mar Addai and Mar Mari = Saints Addai and Mari, to whom the main Liturgy of the Assyrian Church of the East is attributed.  They were apostles, if I'm not mistaken, of the seventy.
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« Reply #18 on: November 25, 2003, 02:48:14 AM »

They were apostles, if I'm not mistaken, of the seventy.  

Correct.

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« Reply #19 on: November 25, 2003, 04:09:44 AM »

Isn't Mar Addai, St Jude?

According to the Dictionnaire d’Arch+¬ologie Chr+¬tienne et de Liturgie the liturgy of the Assyrian Church, even when it is undoubtedly of Apostolic origin as its own name says, was reformed by Patriarch Jesuyab III during the seventh century.

This is the reason why the anamnesis is not present in their liturgy. As a result of their isolation from the other Rites of the Church, the words of the consacration gradualy lost importance to them.
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« Reply #20 on: November 25, 2003, 12:17:20 PM »

so Mar is saint in the ____________ language?
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« Reply #21 on: November 25, 2003, 01:40:32 PM »

Mar is Syriac and is more correctly translated as Lord, which is why Bishops are addressed with this title.  Phil will correct me if I am wrong.Smiley

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« Reply #22 on: November 25, 2003, 04:58:57 PM »

It's all Syriac to me.  Tongue

Mar or Mor are not the Syriac equivalent of "Agios", although they are used as such when talking about a saint.  Mor means "lord" or "sir".  It is used when dealing with saints, and is also given to bishops, who are given a new name when they become bishops.  A bishop in the Syrian tradition follows this pattern: Surname Mar Saint Name.  So, for instance, if I was ordained a bishop, I might be Mathew Mor Dioscoros, for example.  

"Moran" means lord also, but in a different sense.  It is in this sense that we address Jesus Christ our Lord (Moran Yeshu M'shiho), but it can also be used as a title for Patriarchs and Catholicoi.  For instance, the currently reigning Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch is His Holiness Moran Mor Ignatios Zakka I Iwas.  I suppose Moran could be translated as "our lord/Lord".    

"Mor'yo/Moriyo" is used exclusively for the Lord God, and probably is a Syriac equivalent of the "LORD" you find in English Bibles that stands in place of the tetragrammaton.
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« Reply #23 on: November 25, 2003, 10:22:36 PM »

TY.  Nice to learn something new Smiley
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« Reply #24 on: November 29, 2003, 01:01:56 AM »

I don't know how "orthodox" this site is, but their information on the various liturgical rites is interesting.

http://www.odox.net/Liturgical%20Texts.htm
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« Reply #25 on: November 29, 2003, 01:39:57 AM »

very what? orthodox? or interesting?
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« Reply #26 on: January 06, 2004, 03:17:21 PM »

I think that the history of Orthodox liturgical reform and development is interesting.

Before the evil days of 1204, there existed two liturgical uses in the Orthodox Church -- the Cathedral and the Monastic.  Over the previous centuries of the first millenium, very gradually the Constantinopolitan Cathedral rite, which itself evolved and changed gradually over time -- you can call that organic, I guess -- became enforced throughout the other Eastern Sees, Sees that originally had different liturgical rites.  Much of this had to do with the legacy of various schisms in the Eastern Sees during the First Millenium, and the resultant increasingly "Greek Orthodox" nature of the Eastern Mediterranean Orthodox Church over these centuries.

Following the sack of 1204 and the ensuing occupation, the rite used in Constantinople was changed -- this time not organically, but very much by design, to incorporate many elements in use in the Monastery of St. Sabbas in Palestine.  The overall result was a hybrid of the monastical and cathedral rites and, really for the first time, the use in local churches became much more monastic in character.  In a very real sense, this was a triumph of the monks in Orthodoxy.  Because this revised Typikon became normative in Constantinople, it also became normative elsewhere over time due to the fact that the remainder of Eastern Mediterranean Orthodoxy followed the Constantinopolitan Typikon.  There have been some minor changes over the centuries, but generally the "Greek" churches still follow a very similar typikon to that adopted in Constantinople after the sack of 1204.  The Russians generally follow the Nikonian reform -- another inorganic reform -- which is very similar to the revised Constantinopolitan Typikon, with a few cosmetic differences.

But other than this, there hasn't been very much serious liturgical reform in the Orthodox Church for centuries.  It is sort of a holy grail for us -- we are, I think, afraid to do it because of the central inmportance of the liturgy to us, on the one hand, and the "mixed" experience that the Latin Church has had in its own liturgical reform in the 20th Century.  We're generally pretty skeptical about top-down reforms (never mind that our existing liturgy is more or less the product of such a reform), but we're also rather skeptical of liturgical experimentation by individual churches and dioceses that could lead to liturgical reform .. in short, we don't want a top-driven reform and we don't want what would be an "organic" reform, either.  Many of us don't want any reform of any kind in this area, and believe that the liturgical rites are just fine as they are.

Are they?  That's an interesting question.  I doubt you could get five Orthodox to agree on that.  My personal opinion:  the DL could use some editing in parts relating to the duplicative litanies, but I think that the DL basically works as a liturgical service.  As for the rest, noone except the true diehards serves the rest without abridging and adapting, and so I think it's an open secret that at least the official forms of our horologion don't work very well -- at least so it seems to me.

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« Reply #27 on: January 16, 2004, 12:05:48 PM »

brendan: TY for the information. Smiley

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« Reply #28 on: January 16, 2004, 03:08:44 PM »


Just a few words about St. Jame's Liturgy. I'm not sure refering to it as Byzantine is totally acurrate, since it predates the Byzantine Empire and is the most ancient Liturgy known of today. Although since it is used by Byzantine Churches, I guess its fairly accurate after all! Smiley

For most of the Eastern Orthodox Churches, it is used once a year, on St. James' feast day. (which is in October, but I forgot the exact date)

However, in the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, it is used every Sunday. It's the Church of Jerusalem's regular Liturgy. (I think they probably only uses St. John Chrysostom's Liturgy infrequently)

My priest has been to Jerusalem and says it is the most beatiful Liturgy he has ever seen. He also said it is VERY different than the other 2 (or 3 if you count Pre-Sanctified) Byzantine Liturgies. Again, since it pre-dates Byzantium, this is probably a reason for that.

We were going to try to do it at my parish this past St. James day, but my priest called another priest he knows, asking if he thought we could pull it off, and the answer was that even with 3 priests, and ordained Chanters who KNOW what they are doing, they can barely pull it off. So my priest got special permission from the Bishop to do St. JOhn's Liturgy instead.

Our parish has a total of 125 people, and it was a weekday, and there was just no way our parish could do it. However he said next year he's going to teach a few of us how to do it (I think he said you have to have at minimum 2 people who are "chanters") and hopefully the following year, when it falls on a weekend, we'll know it enough that it's quite beautiful.

So to say the least, I asusme its a complex Liturgy, which is probably nothing like most of us have ever seen before.

Maybe someone else who has actually seen it done, can give information on it!


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« Reply #29 on: January 16, 2004, 03:12:57 PM »

However, in the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, it is used every Sunday. It's the Church of Jerusalem's regular Liturgy. (I think they probably only uses St. John Chrysostom's Liturgy infrequently)

I've never heard this before.  Very interesting!  

It should be noted that the Syrian James is different from the Greek James, from what I can see.
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« Reply #30 on: January 16, 2004, 03:50:05 PM »

The British Orthodox Church uses Greek St James every Sunday as well. Not in Greek of course.
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« Reply #31 on: January 16, 2004, 08:05:24 PM »

Dear Peter,

If it is not too off topic, why did the BOC choose to use the Greek James rather than an English version of the Syrian James?
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« Reply #32 on: January 17, 2004, 06:28:20 AM »

When I first met the BOC, then called the OCBI (Orthodox Church of the British Isles) it used an eclectic neo-Gallican Rite that they called the Liturgy of St Joseph of Arimathea. I prayed this for a few years with them. Then as a relationship with the Coptic Orthodox developed Metropolitan Seraphim and the clergy decided that there was a need to regularise some of the features of church life. One aspect of this process was the change from St Joseph to Greek St James. Coptic St Basil was always an option of course but my understanding of the thinking was that Coptic St Basil was rather a static liturgy (in terms of liturgical activity).

I'm mot sure why Syrian St James wasn't used. Perhaps because we were moving towards the Coptic Orthodox rather than the Syrian Orthodox and so Greek St James was more neutral.

St John Chrysostom would have made rather a Byzantine statement I guess and we weren't trying to be Byzantine, or Egyptian.

So using a historic rite that no-one else much uses allows us to be Orthodox without saying we are trying to be ethnically Byzantine/Syrian/Egyptian.

I guess?

I have been at several hundred celebrations of St James and enjoy it. I am certain it does not match a cathedral celebration in Jerusalem, and not having used another Eastern rite it's hard for me to compare. But it works for us.
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« Reply #33 on: January 20, 2004, 02:33:58 PM »

It should be noted that the Syrian James is different from the Greek James, from what I can see.  

I've never read either one, so I don't know...lol! My priest was going to give me a copy of St. James' Liturgy but as of yet hasn't. We actually got to discussing this Liturgy again Sunday after Liturgy, and he was telling us that when he saw it in Jerusalem, there were 10 priests and 2 deacons. The deacons were sort of like a 'master of ceremonies' who at least during the Liturgy are the ones who tell everyone else (even a Bishop if present) what to do and where to go during the Liturgy. Of course sometimes priests take this role if there are no deacons present.

He also said it's nearly 5 hours long, with no distinction between Orthros and the start of Liturgy. It's all one huge service, with many Old Testament readings.

I think he was telling us that at least 2 priests must be present to celebrate it, unless special permission is given by a Bishop.

There was some other stuff he was telling us, but I forgot some of it. Regardless it sounds like an amazing Liturgy. Just thought you or others might find this interesting.

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« Reply #34 on: January 20, 2004, 02:47:47 PM »

Archimandrite Ephrem's provisional translation of the Liturgy of St James is here

http://web.ukonline.co.uk/ephrem/lit-james.htm

I think I prefer the English of the BOC edition, but it is exactly the same text. It takes us about an hour and a half to do the liturgy. I am sure a Jerusalem cathedral liturgy will take longer but it need not be 5 hours as far as I can see unless this includes a lot of additional services, such as including Orthros in that time scale. Doing it slowly would make the liturgy proper two hours I guess.

But since the text the BOC uses is the same as that in the CCEL library version, and as translated by Archimandrite Ephrem I am a little confused/intrigued as to what else is included in the Jerusalem Cathedral version.

Peter Theodore
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« Reply #35 on: January 20, 2004, 05:12:26 PM »

Subdeacon Peter,

If the Jerusalem Cathedral celebrates an unabbreviated Sunday Orthros and goes right into the Divine Liturgy it could easily take 4 hours at least.  If they throw Prime, Terce and Sext in between I can see 5 hours.

Also I was wondering what Divne Office does the BOC use?

Fr. Deacon Lance

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« Reply #36 on: January 20, 2004, 05:22:46 PM »

Good point Deacon Lance.

In our mission we just do the Raising of Incense (Orthros equivalent) and then the Liturgy, so it takes just over 2 hours.

Our Divine Office is the Coptic one. This is as complete as the EO or Roman one although in our mission context we don't do it all. My mission used to pray some of the Hours before we had a priest. We also baptise and marry according to the Coptic rites.

There's a site www.agpeya.org which contains the Hours, though not the Raising of Morning and Evening Incense. The Agpeya means 'Hours'. Tradition says it was dictated by angels to the Alexandrian believers in the time of St Mark.
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« Reply #37 on: January 22, 2004, 07:10:23 PM »

http://www.latin-mass-society.org/promult.htm

I found this article, found it interesting.
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« Reply #38 on: January 22, 2004, 07:11:38 PM »

Also, why is it that in the modern Roman Rite Consecration, an RC priest uses the words "and for all", while in the Bible, it still reads "for many"?

Perhaps the innovators forgot about the Bible?
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« Reply #39 on: January 22, 2004, 08:22:51 PM »

Serb: there is a whole thread here dedicated to that topic.  Give it a read.
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« Reply #40 on: January 23, 2004, 03:32:58 PM »

It's a faulty English translation.  Even in the Latin text, it says "for many".
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« Reply #41 on: January 27, 2004, 02:26:49 PM »

Here is a interesting article regarding the changes in the Roman Liturgy. I don't know how the the Orthodox / Eastern Catholics feel about it though, in relationship to their Liturigical practices.

http://www.latin-mass-society.org/study.htm

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« Reply #42 on: January 29, 2004, 01:21:20 PM »

In my opinion the all/many distinction is retarded.  It doesn't matter either way.  Translating it as "many" gives it the idea that Jesus only died for the saved--that's heretical Calvinism.

anastasios

I must disagree (in charity).  It is important to translate the official Latin text "pro multis" as "for many" or "for the multitude" because that it the accurate translation!  The problem with the for ALL is not apocatastasis or  for Many as Calvinism (actually the Catholic semi-Calvinistic version is called Jansenism).  The problem is translation vs. interpretation.

I opine that it is dangerous to put the interpretation in the translated text if it is not actually required due to syntactical challenges.  There are enough compromises that have to be made for gramatical and syntactical reasons in translation (Every translator is a traitor!).  Why complicate such compromises by imposing an interpretation on the translation itself?  Interpretation belongs to catechesis on the Word of God and the meaning of the Liturgy at the Ambo!  In the religious ed. classroom too and in the home.

Pro Multis does not mean that Jesus Christ died for a select few.  It is probably an admittedly imperfect though literal translation that reflects the imperfect translation of the Koine's "Hoi Polloi" for the likely Aramaic "Rabbim."  Would you prefer the phrase "the All who are Many" for the current alternatives?  I think it would be inelegant.

The "For All" is as much the result of an ineluctable desire on the part modern, liberal Roman Catholic liturgists for newness for newness sake in the liturgy as it is to reflect the actual meaning or intent of the sacred biblical institution narrative.

Regarding the validity of the consecration narrative--I'm not trying to get into Orthodox vs. Catholic differences regarding "when it happens," but the "This is my Body . . . this is my blood . . ." are the important words to use according to the teaching of the Catholic Church.  The "For Many/All" phrase, however important, do not extend validity to or invalidate the consecratory act according to the teachings of the RCC.

Jim

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« Reply #43 on: January 29, 2004, 01:51:08 PM »

Here is a interesting article regarding the changes in the Roman Liturgy. I don't know how the the Orthodox / Eastern Catholics feel about it though, in relationship to their Liturigical practices.

http://www.latin-mass-society.org/study.htm

james

Jakub: what resorces do you have for the OTHER side of the debate?
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« Reply #44 on: January 29, 2004, 01:53:10 PM »

JBC: what difference does it make what the LATIN says?  Smiley SHould we not look rather at the original language of the text in question?
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