Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of April 1, 2002
New Roman Missal released
Signs of reverence to be decided by Canadian bishops
By ART BABYCH
Canadian Catholic News
Catholics in Canada may begin to notice subtle changes in the Latin Mass following the publication of the new Roman Missal, the first since 1975.
The Vatican March 22 released the text of the missal along with the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM), which explains in detail how the Mass is to be celebrated.
Both of the texts must still be translated into English, approved by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops and given the recognitio - confirmation by the Vatican.
Among the changes being considered by the Canadian bishops is an "appropriate sign of reverence" to be used when the faithful receive Communion while standing, said Bishop Jacques Berthelet, president of the CCCB. They will also be proposing "appropriate postures for the Eucharistic Prayer and Communion Rite," he said. The GIRM also allows the bishops' conferences in each country to make adaptations in the celebration of the Eucharist, which must be confirmed by Rome.
Berthelet said the adaptations being considered by the Canadian bishops "concern musical texts, musical styles, melodies and instruments; Communion under both kinds; Masses on days of prayer for particular intentions; vesture of lay ministers; art and environment-altar, furnishings and vessels; and acclamations in the Eucharistic Prayer."
As well, the bishops at their annual plenary assembly in Cornwall, Ont., last September agreed to ask the Vatican for an "indult" - an exemption from the GIRM - concerning the requirement that only priests are to prepare communion cups.
Until Rome responds to the request, Berthelet recommends that diocesan bishops "advise their parishes to continue their present practice."
The CCCB note concluded, "Should questions arise on the correct and appropriate implementation of individual norms in the new edition of the Roman Missal, pastors and faithful are to refer these to their bishop."
Pope John Paul promulgated the new Latin edition of the missal almost two years ago. However technical problems with the printing delayed its publication.
The Latin text includes all of the prayers used for all Masses throughout the year, as well as the instructions on how the Eucharist is to be celebrated.