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The Busted Halo Question Box
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Our readers asked:

Why is the Church changing different words and terms in the mass for next year?

Julianne Wallace Answers:

The way in which the Church translated the Roman Missal (the book that contains all the prayers for Mass) has changed. When translating a text, you can use two different approaches: dynamic equivalence or formal equivalence. Dynamic equivalence translates the original text based on meaning or spirit of the text. Formal equivalence is a literal word-for-word translation of the original text. In our current Roman Missal (published in 1975), the Church used dynamic equivalence to translate the Latin Roman Missal into English. In 2001, the Congregation for Divine Worship published Liturgiam Authenticum. This document calls for a formal (or literal) translation of the Latin Missal. In the past several years, the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (a group of Bishops who work to translate the Latin texts into English), priests and scholars worked to create a formal translation of the Roman Missal. In Advent of 2011 we will begin to pray this newly revised missal. For more information on the revised translation visit www.revisedromanmissal.org.

The Author : Julianne Wallace
Julianne E. Wallace is the associate director of faith formation, worship, and ministry at St. Bonaventure University in Western New York. She earned an M.T.S in Word and Worship from the Washington Theological Union in Washington, D.C. and a B.A. in Music Performance from the University of Mary Washington in Virginia. Julianne is passionate about sharing the joy of liturgy with others and helping everyone to worship well.
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