With the new Roman Missal: Does this mean that we’ve been praying “wrong” for the last 40 years?

No! This is a common misconception about the 3rd Edition of the Roman Missal. The new missal is not better than the words we have been praying for 40 years…it is just a different way to pray. How is the new missal different? A different tool was used for translation from the original Latin text. In the 1975 Sacramentary (the book we previously used), translators used a tool call Dynamic Equivalence, which focused on translating the meaning of a phrase. In the 3rd Edition of the Roman Missal, translators used Formal or Direct Equivalence, which translates word-for-word from the original Latin text. Neither form of prayer is better or worse than the other. And finally, neither one is an incorrect way to pray — they just differ from each other because of the way the translation process was done.

Want to know more about the changes to the Mass? Check out this Busted Halo feature.

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.