Lollipop and the Liturgy

This reminds me of this.


  1. Quin Finnegan says


    • Yes, I totally agree.

      And when it comes to making language more accessible to the common people (“You want to live with common people, you want to be like common people?”) I think Bob Dylan would be a great place to start.

      First order of business: quit that rhyming nonsense, willya? It’s artificial, often contrived and clunky (“…cow/…how,” indeed!).

      And while we’re at it – all those high-falutin allusions you make in your music? – Ezra Pound, T.S. Eliot, Rimbaud, Verlaine – what is that? To paraphrase Steven Colbert, this is a folk song, not an ACT expository essay! So cut that out too.

      And finally, where are the electronic drums and auto-tune in your songs? Get with the program – these are the Teens – electric guitar is so Newport! As Francis says, “Forward! Forward! Not back!”

      So, yeah, when it comes to our folk music, we need something simple, something quick, something everyone can understand and not be challenged by.

      We don’t want to feel like we need to actually learn something – just shut up and sing!

      Which reminds me – in fact, just shut up, because your registers are not my idea of song. Can’t you be more like Englebert Humperdinck or Barry Manilow? Now those guys have got some voices!

      Yes, Bob Dylan – imagine what he could do if he just wasn’t so dang burn challenging. We’d like him so much more! He’d attract so many more people to his concerts! He’d make so much more money!


  2. Broderick Barker says

    Potter, were you there for Carstens’ talk at Gerasene Wisconsin on the linguistic precedents for the English used in the liturgy today? (I believe Carstens focused on the new treatment of the I think that “open letter” is a lot of bosh – if he thinks the Psalms are natural speech in the manner of “give us this day our daily bread,” then he needs to crack his Bible. And if he thinks what he hears today is awkward and unwieldy, then he need to read a little poetry.

  3. Broderick Barker says

    Whoops, got interrupted there: I believe Carstens focused on the new translation of the Creed.

  4. Rufus McCain says

    I knew full well I’d ruffle a bunch of Korrektiv feathers with this. And I admit I haven’t delved into the ins and outs of it all. But overall my visceral response to the new liturgy is that it’s a gigantic reactionary clusterfarkleberry pie. Consubstantially. Sorry.

    • Hey, consubstantial is just about my favorite part of the new translation!

      • Rufus McCain says

        Nice essay, Bernardo. Thanks. I still can’t get over the inherent ugliness of “consubstantial” though; “one in being” is infinitely lovelier– at least to my ears and mind. I have a similar reaction to “chalice”–the word just doesn’t live for me the way the simple and homely “cup” does. To my ears, “chalice” jangles with a backwards baroque silliness. I’m willing to keep trying, but the whole thing also has the smell of an axe being ground with gusto. Maybe the revisers had a legitimate axe to grind; I’m willing to consider that. But it just feels to me like their agenda overrode sensibleness and sensitivity at key points.

        • Rufus,

          You need to read Michael Davies’ trilogy on the Liturgical Revolution if you want to see a well-documented study of the liberal axes being ground that brought us this new Mass. Note, I do not put quotations around “Mass” because it is – and Davies thinks it is – a valid Mass, but for all that, it’s sheer ugliness has had the opposite effect which the liberal impulse which engendered it had intended.

          This one in particular was eye-opening:

  5. Broderick Barker says

    You haven’t answered the question. Were you there for Carstens’ talk?

    • Broderick Barker says

      I ask because if you weren’t, it’d be worth my posting the text of it, I think.

      • Rufus McCain says

        Yeah, post it. Potter told me about it; gave it a favorable review; said Carstens was a helluva nice fella and that the talk helped him get to the point of not needing to move his bowels every time “consubstantial” or “chalice” came up.

        • Those reactionary Dominicans at Blessed Sacrament have switched to the Apostles’ Creed. You’re welcome there any time.

          • Broderick Barker says

            Have they gotten rid of all those unnatural “arts” and “thys” and “halloweds” in the Our Father? Because then I might be interested. Okay, back to work.

  6. Rufus McCain says
    • Broderick Barker says

      No doubt you are pointing to this part: “A December public opinion survey of self-identified Catholics by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) at Georgetown University found a seven in 10 Catholics agree with the statement, ‘Overall, I think the new translation of the Mass is a good thing.'” Sensum fidei and all that. I do wish that the priestly survey had been broken down along age lines.

      • Broderick Barker says

        I really want to emphasize my disappointment in seeing the Commonweal/NCR crowd abandoning the faithful for the sake of the hierarchy. All this pointing to the objections of priests and bishops, when the lay faithful are content – well, it smacks of the worst sort of clericalism, don’t you think? I’d argue that it’s noteworthy that Carstens actually wrote a book that was intended for use in acclimating a confused and/or outraged lay audience to the new translation, only to find that there was no audience for it, because there was no confusion and/or outrage.

  7. Of course we wouldn’t even be having this conversation had the Church stuck to her guns (or would that be canons?)

    Hee hee!

    To wit:

    “Latin, therefore, so intimately bound up with the Church’s life, ‘is important not so much on cultural or literary grounds, as for religious reasons’ as was pointed out by our predecessor Pius XII who, having investigated this matter, indicated three attributes that are wonderfully consistent with the Church’s nature, namely: “In order that the Church may embrace all nations, and that it may last until the end of time, it requires a language that is universal, immutable, and non-vernacular.”


    (This from that pen of that flaming patron saint of NCR/NPR – Pope John XXIII.)

  8. Broderick Barker says

    So the shame of this is that it lacks Carstens’ marvelous presentation, which turned these notes into a first-rate porch talk. But still, it’s something, and so much better than nothing.

    Figures of Speech in the Roman Missal’s New Translation Gerasene Writer’s Conference
    July 28-29, 2012

    Anaphora, the repetition of beginnings:

    • “I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal’.” (MLK, “Normalcy, Never Again”)

    • Roman Missal:
    We praise you,
    we bless you,
    we adore you,
    we glorify you,
    we give you thanks for your great glory, Lord God, heavenly King,
    O God, almighty Father.

    Symploce, repetition of both beginnings and endings:

    • “I’ll tell you who Time ambles withal, who Time trots withal, who Time gallops withal, and who he stands still withal.” (As You Like It, 3.2.309)

    • Roman Missal:
    Therefore, O Lord…,
    we, your servants and your holy people,
    offer to your glorious majesty
    from the gifts that you have given us,
    this pure victim,
    this holy victim,
    this spotless victim,
    the holy Bread of eternal life
    and the Chalice of everlasting salvation. (Unde et memores of the Roman Canon)

    Diacope, the repetition with only a word or two between:

    • “Words, words, mere words, no matter from the heart.” (Troilus and Cressida, 5.3.109) “A horse! a horse! my kingdom for a horse!” (Richard III, 5.4.7)

    • Roman Missal:
    through my fault,
    through my fault,
    through my most grievous fault;

    Anadiplosis, repetition of an end at the next beginning:

    • “When I give, I give myself.” (Whitman) “All men that are ruined are ruined on the side of their natural propensities.” (Burke)

    • Roman Missal:
    Priest: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
    People: It is right and just.
    Priest: It is truly right and just, our duty and our salvation…
    Asyndaton, the omission of a conjunction:

    • “I came, I saw, I conquered.” (Caesar) “That government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” (Gettysburg Address)

    • Roman Missal:
    Almighty ever-living God,
    who govern all things,
    both in heaven and on earth,
    mercifully hear the pleading of your people
    and bestow your peace on our times.
    Through our Lord… (Collect, 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time)

    Polysyndaton, the addition of conjunctions:
    • “And Joshua, and all Israel with him, took Achan the son of Zerah, and the silver, and the garment, and the wedge of gold, and his sons, and his daughters, and his oxen, and his asses, and his sheep, and his tent, and all that he had.” (Joshua, 7:24)

    • Roman Missal:
    Through him, and with him, and in him, O God, almighty Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is yours, for ever and ever. Amen.

    Catechresis, the apparently inappropriate substitution of one word for another, inappropriate because there is not an obviously definable relationship between the two:

    • “Darkness visible” (Milton, Paradise Lost)

    • Roman Missal:
    O God, who have made this most sacred night radiant with the splendor of the true light…. (Collect, Nativity during the Night) Epanados, repetition in the opposite order:

    • “Ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country.” (JFK’s Inaugural address) “Fair is foul, and foul is fair.” (Macbeth 1.1.12)

    • Roman Missal:
    Attend to the pleas of your people with heavenly care, O Lord, we pray, that they may see what must be done and gain strength to do what they have seen. Through our Lord… (Collect, 1st Sunday in Ordinary Time)

    Chiasmus, an epanados at the level of a larger unit or passage:

    The Roman Canon:
    1. Initial praise (Preface dialogue, preface text, Sanctus): “The Lord be with you….” “It is truly right and just….” “Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus”

    2. Initial prayer through Christ: “To you, therefore [Te igitur], most merciful Father, we make humble prayer and petition, through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord.”

    3A. First intercessions (for the Church, the Pope, Bishop, the living): “…which we offer firstly [In primis] for your Church.” “Remember, Lord, your servants N. and N. and all gathered here [Memento, Domine]….”

    3B. First list of saints: “In communion with those whose memory we venerate, especially the glorious ever-Virgin Mary, Mother of our God and Lord, Jesus Christ, and blessed Joseph….”

    4A. First formula of offering: “Therefore, Lord, we pray [Hanc igitur]: graciously accept this oblation or our service…”

    4B. First (consecratory) epiclesis: “Be pleased, O God, we pray, to bless,
    acknowledge, and approve this offering [Quam oblationem] in every respect…” 5A. Double consecration: “On the day before [Qui pridie] he was to suffer, he took bread…” “In a similar way [Simili modo], when supper was ended, he took this precious chalice…”

    5B. Anamnesis: “Therefore, O Lord, as we celebrate the memorial [Unde
    et memores] of the blessed Passion, the Resurrection from the dead,
    and the glorious Ascension into heaven…”

    4A. Second formula of offering: “Be pleased to look upon these offerings [Supra quae] with a serene and kindly countenance…”

    4B. Second (communion) epiclesis: “In humble prayer we ask you [Supplices te
    rogamus], almighty God: command that these gifts be borne by the hands of your holy Angel to your altar on high…so that all of us…may be filled with every grace and blessing.”

    3A. Second intercessions (for the deceased and for the participants): “Remember also [Memento etiam], Lord, your servants N. and N., who have gone before us…” “To us, also, your servants, who, though sinners [Nobis quoque peccatoribus], hope in your abundant mercies…”

    3B. Second list of saints: “…graciously grant some share and fellowship [et societatem donare digneris] with your holy Apostles and Martyrs: with John the Baptist, Stephen….”

    2. Concluding prayer through Christ: “Through whom [Per quem] you continue to make all these good things, O Lord, you sanctify them, fill them with life, bless them, and bestow them upon us.”

    1. Concluding praise (doxology): “Through him, and with him, and in him…all glory is yours forever and ever.”



    • Don’t ever attend the New Mass for any reason, of course. It’s invalid and non-Catholic. It must always be avoided under pain of grave sin.

    • One must not financially support, in any way, any priest or group that holds false positions. We are not aware of any priests, groups or religious communities in the world (besides our monastery) holding the correct positions in a public, clear and uncompromising way.

    • Don’t go to any church in this country (“traditional” or otherwise) for Sunday or Saturday Masses, since basically all the priests are heretics and the heretics give sermons or talks on those days. People should stay home on Sunday and pray 15 decades of the Rosary. (This generally applies to other countries as well.)

    • Consistent with the above: don’t go to any Sunday or Saturday Masses of the Society of St. Pius X. Don’t go to any “Masses” of the FSSP or similar groups. (Those groups also cannot be considered to have valid priests, as they utilize “bishops” consecrated in the doubtful New Rite of Consecration.) Don’t go to any Indult Masses or Latin Masses offered in the “diocese”. Don’t go to any Sunday or Saturday liturgies of priests in the Eastern Rite. Don’t go to any Sunday or Saturday Masses of priests of the CMRI or similar priests and groups who hold heresy on the salvation dogma, as those heretics frequently give sermons on those days. Sedevacantist priests who condemn the true position on water baptism (i.e., the denial of “baptism of desire”) as either heretical or mortally sinful – and that would include most sedevacantist priests in our day – are imposing heretics. They aren’t an option for any sacrament whatsoever. They should be completely avoided.

    • If a priest is a heretic, but is not imposing – and that might apply to a small number of independent or sedevacantist priests – it’s possible that he might still be an option for Communion if he’s somewhat close to our positions on the Counter Church. However, one should not receive Communion from him during his Sunday or Saturday Mass, for he might give a sermon or a talk during that Mass. If he meets the criteria for receiving Communion (and that would be rare), one should only receive Communion from him on a different day of the week. If he only gives Communion on Sunday, then one should simply go without Communion. As stated above, an imposing heretic is a priest who either requires someone to adhere to his false positions, or holds that the true position on a topic is mortally sinful or heretical. In the rare case just described, in which a priest might meet the criteria to be an option for Communion (but only on a day on which he does not give a sermon), to find out if he’s an imposing heretic, you can call him up and tell him what your positions are – e.g., that you are a sedevacantist and reject “baptism of desire” – and see how he reacts. This kind of discussion would be necessary when considering a priest (in the rare situation just described) for Communion. However, when going to confession only to a validly ordained Novus Ordo priest or to an Eastern Rite priest, such a discussion about the issues (to find out if the priest is imposing) would not be necessary prior to making the confession (unless the issues were to come up), as explained below.

    • Don’t receive Communion from (or be present at the Mass of) any priest who accepts Antipope John Paul II as a “saint.” That essentially means that almost all priests who accept Antipope Francis should not be approached for Communion. It’s possible that there might be very rare exceptions to this principle (e.g., non-imposing independent priests who reject much of the Counter Church and the “canonization” of John Paul II, but still absurdly accept Antipope Francis); however, even in those cases, one should not receive Communion from them at their Sunday or Saturday Masses. Likewise, with an independent or Eastern Rite priest who doesn’t accept John Paul II as a “saint,” in order to be approached for Communion he would also have to reject false ecumenism and hold that the Eastern schismatics should be converted to the Catholic faith. (He would not have to hold the correct position on water baptism and the salvation dogma, as many priests before Vatican II were in heresy on that point. But he could not impose his false position on true Catholics or consider the true position heretical or mortally sinful.)

  11. Reminds me of the best of Cold War era PSAs.

    Scare quotes rule!

    Thanks for this.


  12. In this time, at least in this country, you should not comment on catholic blogs. On the other hand, we like the cut of your jib. Such spunk!

  13. Rufus McCain says
    • The lack of citation from the fathers places Father Barry’s interpretation in the same suspicious realm as Cardinal Kaspar in citing the Eastern Orthodox notions of oeconomica as somehow sanctioning divorce and remarriage.

      The few fathers who spoke about it do not represent some sort of consensus.

      Also, just think, if you were the 100th monkey, the Church could some day cut this Gordian knot of vernacular translations for good:


  14. The case against cup:

    The word in the Roman Missal: calyx = chalice.

    The word NOT in the Roman Missal: cuppa = cup.


    p.s. Why doesn’t Commonweal just change its name to Commonhappiness? What’s a weal? It sounds like it hurts, whatever it is…

    • Rufus McCain says

      Sadly, the notion of a “false friend,” an English word that sounds like the Latin word but isn’t quite the same, seems not to have occurred to you.

      • Broderick Barker says

        Do you really wanna go toe to toe with JOB on Latin? The man dreams in Latin.

      • The article is arguing some sort of arcane point about the Latin – I’m saying that it is not clear that such a point holds any water (or wine or even the Precious Blood for that matter) because it seems so arcane and because I’ve heard the same sort of argument for translating in the words of consecration “multis” as “all” because it was understood in a brief period of Latinate construction that “multis” meant “all.” Well, guess what? It did mean “many” after all!

        The term I’m looking for is “archaism” and Pius XII condemned it for what it is:

        “The same reasoning holds in the case of some persons who are bent on the restoration of all the ancient rites and ceremonies indiscriminately. The liturgy of the early ages is most certainly worthy of all veneration. But ancient usage must not be esteemed more suitable and proper, either in its own right or in its significance for later times and new situations, on the simple ground that it carries the savor and aroma of antiquity. from Pius XII’s encyclical “Mediator Dei (#62).

        “Indiscriminately.” Note that word – it makes all the difference between progressives and traditionalists. Interesting to note, at any rate, how the NCR/Commonweal crowd will invoke tradition (antiquity) when it suits them. Otherwise, forward march with the altar girls and deaconesses! Yee-haw!


  15. Quin Finnegan says

    I should say that there are some things that I do like, particularly “through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault” with the striking of the breast.

    I don’t mind “And with your spirit”, although I don’t know that it is so much better than “And also with you” … the change, obviously, draws a distinction between “you” and “your spirit” and I’m curious about the theology behind it. I see how it’s important to emphasize the spirit (I wrote recently in a poem, “I have seen shapes that extend beyond the grave, or sub specie aeternitatis, we say, embarrassed even by the idea of spiritual bodies”), but I like the directness of the simple “you”, which I don’t see as necessarily excluding “your spirit”.

    I do prefer “sinned through my own fault” to “greatly sinned”, as it places greater emphasis on personal responsibility (to my ears, anyway).

    I greatly prefer the change to “on earth peace to people of good will”.

    The change to “We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you, we give you thanks, for your great glory, Lord God, heavenly King, O God, almighty Father” seems compendious, with altogether to much emphasis on all the adoring, glorifying and thanking that we do … to my ears sounding even a tad obsequious. I liked the previous “Lord God and Heavenly King” and the very clear tricolon that closes out the prayer.

    I really don’t understand how “Only Begotten Son” is an improvement over “only Son of the Father”, but certainly remain open to an explanation as to the theological necessity for the change.

    I do like the plural in “you take away the sins of the world, as, again, I think it subtly emphasizes personal responsibility and our own participation rather than our being tainted by original sin (I see the theological validity of both, but am here interested in the scholarly justification).

    I do also appreciate the change to “you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer; you are seated at the right hand of the Father: have mercy on us”, but also have to admit that I somewhat prefer the earlier version. I can’t justify that preference, but it’s evasive to deny it.

    As for the Nicene Creed, I do prefer “I” to “We”, for reasons I trust are clear by now. But I don’t really mind the change, either. I do prefer the older “all that is seen and unseen” to “all things visible and invisible”. I can imagine reasons behind the change, one of them being the desire to stay close to the Latin, but here I would like to mention a few things about the ecclesiastical use of Latin in general. I enjoy Latin and I cherish the Latin mass, the Tridentine and also Dominican one I sometimes attend at Blessed Sacrament. I claim no special expertise, but I’ve studied Latin off and on since I was a teenager, teach it, and regard its abandonment by our churches and our schools as one of the great tragedies of our times.

    Still, the notion that English words derived from Latin (which, to my ears, are just anglicized Latin) are more valid than Germanic derivations seems to me mistaken. Of course “visible” is closer to the Latin than “seen”, but does that really mean it is better? Maybe it is because I’ve studied so much Latin that I rather like the one syllable of “seen”.

    I think the creed was originally composed in Greek, perhaps with a view to the Latin, and of course the Latin is closer to the original, and the theology the led to it and grew out of it is tied to the language in which it was first understood. Language is important, but not as important as the truths towards which it is directed, and I think words of German origin (and Sanskrit and Chinese) are sufficient to express that.

    So, likewise for “consubstantial” and “incarnate”. Regarding “consubstantial”, I can admit that the Heideggerian preoccupation with Being (to say nothing of Beying!) has certainly colored my perception, but I’ll add that the assonance and alliteration in “one in being” is itself a very beautiful thing.

    I prefer the old directness of “died” to the “suffered death” as well as “in fulfillment of the Scriptures” to “in accordance with” — although I understand how theological reasons might make the latter necessary.

    As for the rest of the creed, I appreciate the changes to “I” instead of “We” (see above), although I rather prefer the rhythm of the earlier version. Perhaps only because I’ve said it for so long (which is sometimes a good reason, sometimes not).

    In the Sanctus, I liked “power and might”, which makes more sense than “hosts” to just about everybody who hasn’t read stilted translations of Homer.

    In general, sometimes the changed version is more direct, sometimes the earlier version is … I almost always prefer the direct, whichever version (even in such small ways as “Save us, Saviour of the world” instead of “You are the Savior of the World”, as well as “Behold” rather than “This is”).

    Regarding Communion, I think “Blessed” is an improvement over “Happy”, but I can certainly understand how “Happy” might be an acknowledgement of the immediate and profound effect upon our daily being. Sure, “Blessed” is (I suspect) more theologically correct, and certainly offers the kind of reverence we want to maintain in our prayers. But is “Happy” really so wrong?

    I, too, stumble over “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof”. Of course it is closer to the Gospel, and maybe that is the only criterion that ought to be considered. Still, I’m in church when I say it, not in my own house, under my own roof, and when I first started saying it, I was arrested by a vision of the host under the roof of my mouth. That’s where the desire for verisimilitude has led me. My problem, right?

    Yes, these are my problems. I write all this in what I hope is a genuine spirit of humility. I am happy to be corrected on any of these points—theological, poetic, personal … whatever. I consider it a great privilege, the greatest of privileges, really, and even that seems to diminish it, to go to Mass at all.

    But this is why I sometimes find myself stumbling through the mass. Not that I didn’t stumble before.

    • Broderick Barker says

      Well, gosh, if you’re gonna be all thoughtful and civil…

      I really like the “enter under my roof,” not only because of the echo of the Gospel, but also for the echoes of “your body is a temple” and Christ’s saying that he will abide in those who love him, and Psalm 24’s “Lift up your heads, you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in.” The notion of welcoming him in, in the hope that I may one day be made welcome into the Father’s house (which is also not really a house).

      Not, as you note, that personally liking or not liking is the measure. Just on the level of shared experience.

    • Brian,

      In all sincerity, I ask this: have you ever tried to develop a devotion to the Traditional Latin Mass?

      I ask because many of these problems never even crop up. I warn you, though: other problems will (the problem being, I assure you, not with the Mass but with your own formation – think of it as a completely new work out regimen; you’re not used to it but that doesn’t mean it’s not helping you…). So once or twice won’t do it. Try it for a month and see if it doesn’t make a difference for you…


      • Quin Finnegan says

        Mr JOB,

        Who am I to question your sincerity?

        If it’s my use of the word “cherish,” then yes, the word is probably too strong, from conflating my love for Latin with my devotion to mass, without having developed a devotion to the Traditional Catholic Mass.

        If I understand you correctly, these problems couldn’t come up in the Traditional Latin Mass—if the standard is Latin, then the Traditional Latin Mass eo ipso meets that standard.

        I’m fairly aware of problems with my own formation by going to the regular (Novus Ordo) mass. I’d be interested in knowing what problems in your own formation you confront with the Traditional Latin Mass that you don’t confront with the latest translation, and then both those vis a vis the previous translation. To use the same analogy, what muscles do you find exorcized in each of those work out regimens?

        For my part, I will make it a higher priority to go to the Latin Mass. I can do this pretty easily on Sundays, but weekdays will be more difficult.

        Thanks, JOB.

        Pax Christi,

  16. Rufus McCain says

    Where are all the Lollipop defenders?

Speak Your Mind