First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Well it does to the people who post here... dispassionate and reasoned debate, with a good deal of humour thrown in for good measure.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by NorthernTenor »

contrabordun wrote:It comes at one of those points in the Mass where a lot of music gets juggled in a 30 second timeframe and the eyes get unglued from the new words.

That strikes a chord. This morning was the parish's and my first mass singing the new translation, as opposed to last week when Latin was sung and English said here and in the other Catholic parish where I sang (and, come to think of it, we sang the Byrd 3-part for the Anglicans, too, but that's another story). My abiding memory of this morning is of frantically juggling Mass text, music running order, Propers sheet (English) and Missal chant booklet, the while trying to avoid disgrace in my stand-in turn at the organ. Psalm-tone Propers aside, we sang the Missal Kyrie (Greek), Gloria, Our Father, Sanctus, Agnus & a surprising number of the dialogues. Perspiration and panic aside, it didn't go too badly - just one general "and also with you", and a sense that at least some thought they recognised bits of the music from somewhere, and were willing to give it a try along with the new text. We leavened it with Sweet Sacrament Divine, Soul of my Saviour and the Salve Regina, just to make people feel at home.

I think we'll only do that much once a month when my turn on the Sunday morning rota comes round, but the plan is for some bits at least to be sung at other times.

The other plus to come out of this week is that we now have commitments from two choir members to write Mass settings over the next few months, which will give us a rota of four over the year, including the Missal chants and excluding the once-a-month Latin (I haven't had the heart yet to mention the antics of The Panel and The Liturgy Office). In this corner of the field, at least, the new translation is showing signs of encouraging the Mass to be sung. Fingers crossed.
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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by oopsorganist »

No worries here.

We were all prepared and anyway we don't mind as long as it is written on the mass sheet, we'll go along with anything. I can tell PP is not feeling very fluent, but he'll get there. We sang the Lord have mercy and are working our way up to the Holy Holy, maybe get to the Gloria by 2020.

Someone did notice new words this week and was asking a helper at the back of church after mass, how come? He said it was good to have a change.

One young person has volunteered help. A music student. Hmmm, very very good......

One person keeps saying " and also with you", but I will try to concentrate harder next week, I really will.

I love telling them that the bishop has asked us to sing the missal chants. You see, it's not me, I'm only doing what I am asked to do.....................
uh oh!

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by DrT »

Our Parish has chosen a SUNG mass setting for feast days, but decided that the missal chants shall be the order of the day - at least until everyone is familiar.
4th September - 9.30 Mass - Father says to me, the deacon, "What shall we sing?" Me: "I'm up for the lot!" Which we did - and the parishioners all coped very well. We used the second penitential rite, omitted a sung creed and Our Father, but the rest was from the Chant - and it was GOOD. We had had one practice dedicated to the chant the Saturday previously and had been running with the Kyrie, Gloria, Santus and Agnus Dei for a couple of weeks. Be brave! It was positive!

In the prison, where I am chaplain, we decided at our first mass to sing what we could. And the response was very positive. The Chant gloria was really crisp - improving as it went on! The prisoners, who most people would assume have little comprehension of liturgy, really understood the significance of singing the Mass.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by VML »

That sounds good, Dr T.
We have the Farnworth Mass booklets, and they are printing the chant with the new words. I was over-ruled back in July about whether we should go for the chant or the Belmont first. We sang the Belmont Lamb of God through July and August. On 4th Sept, I was not involved, and PP decided Gloria should be spoken, but Sanctus and Agnus were Belmont, and people sang Agnus with gusto, and even tried the Sanctus, sort of trailing along. 'My' Sunday, 11th, we deided that though it is a simple matter to accompany the Belmont, it sounds good on its own. So we sang G,S, and A a capella, and I have put a link in the parish bulletin for people to listen and learn the Belmont online if they wish.
We will use the chant in the near future, and get PP singing too.

We are using very well known hymns, and making the change to what we should be doing at Communion, so: a short chant for all to sing while choir receive, then a hymn for the rest of Communion, and silence after.
One excellent thing has been that our PP is encouraging a few minutes of silence before Mass. He came out and announced it the first week, emphasising that it didn't mean children too young to know better; this week I made sure all runs through and info was finished in time and he called for silence from the sacristy.

As far as bear traps go, I was on auto pilot after being cantor for psalm and acc., so returned to my seat and of course responded, 'And also with you....' :oops:

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by Calum Cille »

Having set them to music, I know all the new responses off by heart and so haven't been looking at the mass sheet. I've said "and also with you" once on the 4th and twice on the 11th so I intend to be more circumspect on the 18th.

After carrying on with bits of the old St Anne's Mass setting at one of the masses on the 4th, Corp sa Chiste parish dropped all singing of the mass ordinary at the same mass on the 11th. I am advised that this is because the person in charge of the music at that mass is likely to step down and hasn't learned any new sets. Apparently the only reason the old St Anne's Mass setting had been used the previous Sunday was through lack of awareness that even musical sets of the old translation were no longer desired in the parish.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by Calum Cille »

Fr Kevin Doran said one advantage of the new wording was it meant people had to concentrate on what they were saying and on what was being said. “On some days, I think I could say ‘rashers and eggs’ and people would reply ‘and also with you’,” he said. ... 45478.html

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by Nick Baty »

In Liverpool Archdiocese, we still have one more week before the great switch. However, I've been involved with a series of music workshops around the diocese and I'm amazed by the feedback I've received.

Yes, there have been a few "whys", but most people appear rather energised by the whole thing: new texts means new music and they're mostly all up for the challenge.

I've noticed that the Missal chants are received in the same way as settings accompanied by choir and organ and those accompanied by guitar. Most parish musicians appear to be looking for a variety of styles to suit a variety of worshipping communities in one parish.They're also after flexible settings: those which can be accompanied by one guitar or by choir and organ, so they'd have a shared setting for when the whole parish (or pastoral area) comes together.

Just one elderly lady looked a tad depressed. Would she have to throw away all that they were currently singing, she asked. And then, after a short group discussion, she put her head in her hands and said, "I'm finishing then. I can't go on. It's taken me years..." A few people chatted with her at the break and assured her that, initially, she'd only have to worry about the Gloria and the Eucharistic Acclamations. As she left she said, "Please tell me they're not changing the psalms too...." I suspect she noticed I was evading the question.

Several people asked if Israeli Mass and Clapping Gloria were now out of the window. They looked rather confused when I told them they'd never been in. And they pointed out "but they're in the book...."

By the time we've finished this series of events, more than 250 people will have gathered to sing settings of the new translation. I'm still working out just how many parishes they represent and I suspect there are quite a few who won't come near. But it does appear that parish musicians in this part of the world are ready to give this a go.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by justMary »

A small report from the west of Ireland to make you all feel better:

At the liturgy meeting before the first Mass where we were supposed to start using the new translations, I told them I'd heard that the new Gloria and Creed would be printed in this weeks leaflets. Mentioned some things I'd read here about priests announcing the changes and people teaching new Glorias during Mass. We decided that we have to introduce the changes (though everyone thinks they're cracked / regressive ). Agreed that PP would announce the changes at the start of mass (he doesn't sing at all), and remind people at the relevant bits. Agreed not to put words up on the overhead because everyone has a leaflet. Also agreed that the parish should purchase a few copies of the music book produced by Veritas (after some strong words from me that just copying illegally is Not Ok).

First week - no PP announcement before Mass, Gloria read by heart (ie without looking at leaflets) so old text used, Creed - PP announced that we'd use the Apostles creed from the Mass leaflets, so the new text was read and changes barely noticed. PP made a small announcement after communion that we would be introducing changes gradually over the next few weeks.

Second week - still no announcement beforehand, PP announced before the Gloria that we would read it from the leaflets - but 1/2 the congregation didn't have 'em (including me, I think someone borrowed it!). Train wreck about 3/4 the way through. Apostles Creed better, but only cos those without leaflets shut up.

Liturgy group has agreed via email that new prayers do need to go up on the overhead afterall. Just got a text about a workshop to learn new Mass music - next Sunday evening. Me (admin / overheads person who sings a bit, plays whistle badly, certainly cannot lead/teach) may be the only person attending. Musicians are likely to be receptive to whatever copies I bring back for them - but it's going to take a while.

Next week = third week. PP will be away. Most likely stand-in is somewhat elderly , semi-retired, and possibly not up with the play. Not receptive to talking to lay people before Mass starts about what's going to happen that day. Could be "interesting".

Phased implementation is the phrase, I believe. Implementation period best measured in years, I think.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by SAUnison »

Celebrated the first Mass of the School year yesterday, using the revised translation for the first time. Spent the last week or so talking to each class in the school about the changes - although a small school we cover an age range of 3 year to 18 years and a mix of Catholic, other Christian and non-Christian faiths and we often have parents and parishioners joining us for Mass. Students were quite accepting of the changes and understood the explanation for the changes. Some of the Catholic students were aware of the changes but had little idea why - whatever formation that happened in their parishes had clearly passed them by... Main difficulty was 'Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof...' which students found particularly awkward, but when I explained the link between the text and NT was explained it wasn't a problem.
By the time we got to yesterday's Mass, I just needed to remind them to use the new Mass cards and run through the changes to the Holy, Holy and the new Memorial Acclamation (we're using the revised Mass of Creation as it's still quite close to the original version which we know). The Gloria was spoken as we haven't yet had time to learn a new one and I still haven't found one that leaps out as being particularly good for our school (suggestions anyone...perhaps by PM or we risk going off topic!)
Responses were a little tentative at first - a few mistakes (mainly the adults...) but it's done and will be even better next time.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by Nick Baty »

Another workshop today in Liverpool Archdiocese (which starts using the new translation this evening/tomorrow) and met some very, very angry people. They weren't objecting to the text (well, a few were) but they wanted to know why they had only just been told about it and hadn't been given time to prepare.

Chatting to some of them over lunch, I discovered they were from several different parishes and all very committed to the Church and their individual parishes. And I wondered exactly how many of us in the pew have received the formation which was envisaged.

I showed them this forum on a laptap, with posts going back to 2004 and discussions about the green book – they were amazed. (And Musicus might discover a few new contributors.) Perhaps we haven't had the formation that was intended. Perhaps their priests had simply avoided the issue.

It's good to read some of the success stories on here but I can't help wondering what's really going on around the country.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by Southern Comfort »

This morning, a month in:

Most of the congregation said "And also with you" throughout Mass, except, curiously, at the Sign of Peace. The rest of the time, because a few were saying "and with your spirit" it sounded messy.
Both readers said, with great confidence, "This is the word of the Lord".
Penitential Rite was the "I confess", with only about half the congregation taking part, followed by spoken Lord, have mercy, etc.
Gloria, Creed, Sanctus, Agnus Dei all spoken. They all seemed to engage the entire congregation.
Preface Dialogue: a large number of voices saying loudly "thanks and praise" when everyone else had finished....
"Lord, I am not worthy": everyone seemed to know the revised translation from memory!
A proportion of the assembly were not using the mass cards provided, but there was a significant number who were not using the hymn books either (and had not even bothered to pick them up as they came in).

There are still several parishes in this part of the world which have not started using the new texts at all.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by IncenseTom »

We started using the new texts at the start of August (the PP was keen to get on with it), and from the first weekend of September we have been singing the Kyrie, Gloria, Sanctus, Save us, and Agnus Dei (Missal chants), as well as many of the dialogues between Priest and Congregation.

Spoken responses are also very confident.

This success has been completely down to preparation. The choir have been working on the chants since may-ish, and the PP have been excellent in preparing the congregation and very positive in his handling of the changes.

It all feels rather comfortable!

I know things are quite different in my Mum's parish where they have ditched sung responses and people are struggling as people were a bit unprepared.
Hang in there if it isn't going so well - once people get used to it, as they have in my parish, one starts to notice just how good the 'new' Mass is.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by dunstan »

Southern Comfort wrote:"Lord, I am not worthy": everyone seemed to know the revised translation from memory!

I have to say, for the last forty years it has grated every time I said "to receive you" as an English version of "ut intres sub tectum meum". Perhaps I am not alone in saying that particular revised response with a feeling of relief.
It's not a generation gap, it's a taste gap.

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by nazard »

Now that most things are more or less right, the translation of "Laus tibi Christe" is beginning to jar...

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Re: First Mass in new translation: so how was it?

Post by Eastern Promise »

Our parish have decided not to use the new translation. The PP is continuing with the old and is setting up a Society of Pope Paul VI. Anyone here want to join us?