Friday, August 04, 2006

Bishop Roche Reminds Us that the New Translation is Back-to-Basics

Amy Welborn ( ) points us to an article in the Tablet by Bishop Arthur Roche. Bishop Roche is the bishop of Leeds, England, and Chairman of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy. In the Tablet article, he tells us why we needed a new translation of the Roman liturgy.

Too many of the new translation's critics forget something: the original rendering into English which we have now used (and been abused by) these last thirty five years was a stopgap measure at best.

If you own your own place, you know how stopgap fixes work. A cabinet door breaks. You nail a board across it to hold it until you can get the proper stuff from the hardware store to fix it. One trip, two trips, three trips to your local hardware store and somehow there is always the one item you forget to get. Ten years pass and what was supposed to be temporary has literally become part of the woodwork.

Unfortunately these things get fixed properly when it comes time to sell the house. Thus it is someone else who enjoys the fruit of our labor. Or to borrow Jesus' even more rural metaphor: someone else reaps where we have sown.

Our children will prosper with the newer, more solemn, and more accurate translation, while we live with the ugly makeshift one.

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