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Bishop Roche presents new Missal to the Pope

By on Thursday, 20 October 2011

Pope Benedict XVI, Bishop Roche and Pierpaolo Finaldi (Photo courtesy of Mr Finaldi)

Pope Benedict XVI, Bishop Roche and Pierpaolo Finaldi (Photo courtesy of Mr Finaldi)

Bishop Arthur Roche of Leeds yesterday presented Pope Benedict XVI with a specially made white version of the new Roman Missal.

Bishop Roche, chairman of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL), opened and showed the missal to the Pope, who then leafed through it, pausing on the illustrated pages.

The missal was a specially bound version of the Catholic Truth Society (CTS) altar missal used by priests in Britain.

Accompanying Bishop Roche was Mgr Bruce Harbert, former executive director of ICEL, Archbishop Denis Hart of Melbourne and Pierpaolo Finaldi, commissioning editor at the CTS.

According to Mr Finaldi, the Pope immediately asked how the new English translation had been received in parishes and remarked on the importance of beauty in liturgical books. Bishop Roche said the translation had been received well.

Mr Finaldi, who oversaw the production of all the new CTS missals, said it was “like handing in your homework after 10 years”.

He said: “It was John Paul II who set the ball rolling in 2001 [with Liturgiam authenticam], so it was great to be able to bring it back with the job done.”

The altar missal, which costs £230, contains illustrations from the Ingeborg Psalter, a 12th-century illuminated manuscript.

The Pope’s version is bound in top-grade white leather, using a technique known as German binding.

Earlier in the year Mr Finaldi said that CTS had for a long time sought to improve the aesthetic value of its books.

“The most beautiful thing in the world is the love of Christ for us, for his Church. So things presented for the Church should always be beautiful. They are made for God – to raise people’s spirits to God,” he said.

  • R Brown

    Please note that the Altar Missals will be arriving in parishes from Tuesday next week. (R Brown, Sales & Marketing Manager, CTS)

  • Fr Hugh OSB

    Alleluia! And the Study Editions are coming soon too, I hope.

  • Nick

    “Bishop Roche said the translation had been received well “. . . . . Has Bishop
    Roche been locked in a cupboard for the last 6 months ?  Has he spoken to
    anyone, let alone lay people about the new translation ? Don’t tell the Pope the
    new translation has been well received in my name . . . sorry, how glib of
    me.  Lets put our fingers back in our ears heads down, sit back and let the
    church simmer down to it’s faithful remnant . . . . tatty bye everybody . . . .
    tatty bye !

  • Anonymous

    Do you dislike the new translation?

  • Anonymous

    “Bishop Roche said the translation had been received well.”

    If only.

  • Cjkeeffe

    Bishop Roche said the translation had been received well” Bishop Roche obviously does not read the so called catholic Tablet.
    I guess this is why teh Holy Father appears to allow the choas in the country as the bishops keep tellingh im all is well.

  • Paul Waddington

    The new translation has been well received by 95% of Catholics.  It is only a tiny percentage who are unhappy, and pretty well all of them are Tablet readers.  What else would anyone expect from those people!

  • AgingPapist

    Any bishop taking public pride in this missal has to be anxious for promotion.  The pope would be the last person in the world to know how well this disaster is going over with Catholics the world over. Bishop Roche and Cardinal Pell undoubtedly told the old boy that, so he picked up on it and decided he better make another of his “infallible” statements.

  • AgingPapist

    Nick, How right you are.

  • Lee Der Heerskinderen Lovelock

    Nothing will be better than the time when the Novus Ordo however tarted up it is, is dumped and scratched from the sight of Catholics in The Latin Rite and the Old Mass given its place again as the Eternal Mass. If Eastern Catholics can enjoy such privileges whereby they can celebrate in liturgical traditions which are not mutilated every second, why can Latin Catholics not enjoy the same privileges!

  • Anonymous

    I don’t believe the new translation has gone down particularly well.  Most of the reaction I have heard seems to be indifferent or slightly negative. And that’s in a reasonably conservative parish with not many liberals as far as I’m aware.  The new translation isn’t a failure and I’m sure we’ll get used to it in the end, but it isn’t the great success that was hoped for either.

  • Moloney56

    In Australia in the parishes I move between, I’d say that it has been well received and that now with the exception of the altered creed, many people are confident with the new text and have adjusted and don’t require mass cards even. The only parish I’ve seen problems (half the congregation saying one thing, half rattling off the old) was in a parish where the priest openly criticised the new translation.

  • Anonymous

    Absolutely right, Lee.  Well said.

    Is this the same bishop Roche (of Leeds) who persecuted one of his priests and closed the parish church because the priest tried to offer the Traditional Latin Mass?  And now, here he is, promoting a revised liturgy based on the Novus Ordo Mass rather than calling for a return the the Mass of all time.

    Let us pray that he will see the error of his ways in time to save his soul.

  • Archon1

    Lee where do you derive all this “Eternal Msss” from? That mass is eternal when a validly ordained priest celebrates with the Church approved texts. The Tridentine Rite is exactly that, the rite  produced in 1570 at the request of the great Council of Trent. This major revision, probably the first since the 8th century, did away with many local liturgical variations and traditions in the interests of uniformity. But all of this is valid. the Church owns the liturgy and has the right to change adapt and ammend it from time to time. The essential features remain within the context of change. That is the Eternal Mass and none other. Not one particular form of the Mass dating to a particular period.  Move on my friend with the great Church. Dont get bogged down.

  • Archon1

    Gratitious disrespect for the Holy Father just serves to show what you are and to rob you of Catholic validity. Why cheapen the debate with unkindness?

  • Anonymous


    I fear you are under a misapprehension if you believe that the Novus Ordo Mass has continuity with the various forms of Mass from the past.

    All of the earlier Masses came from the Apostles following the institution of the first Mass by Christ Himself at the last supper, and they themselves had commonality with the mode of sacrifice practised by the Jews from Abraham’s time.  There was an altar, and a victim, and the person offering the sacrifice faced the altar.

    The Novus Ordo Mass is the first “Roman Catholic” Mass not to have come from the Apostles.  It was concocted by Archbishop Bugnini and it erased almost all references to altars and to sacrifice in order to make it acceptable to Protestants in the interests of ecumenism.  In place of the idea of a sacrifice, you will see the emphasis is on a feast, a banquet, a commemoration of a supper that took place 2,000 years ago.  The celebrant now “presides” over a banquet and frequently turns his back on the table on which the banquet is laid – a far cry from a sacrificial altar.  The liturgy has been stripped of almost all references to an altar.  It can be read by a Protestant as referring to the consumption of a piece of blessed bread, and it can be read by a Catholic as referring to the receiving the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord Himself.  This is a totally unacceptable ambiguous situation as moment’s thought will reveal. It cannot be both at the same time.

    Far from “moving on with the Church”, Archon1, you need to think again, and to fight against being carried away in the drift, and to cling to the Mass of all time.  Do please explore this link:

  • TiredofRebelsVsRome

    Sorry, I thought only Jesus said only ONE man on Earth had possessed the Authority to Bind and Loosen matters Heavenly and Earthly pertaining to our salvation at any given time (lets forget the Antipopes, for arguments sake, shall we?).

    And last time I checked, the Popes have endorsed the Forma ordinaria.

    Nonetheless, I actually prefer the Forma extraordinaria, and I think BXVI does as well. What I do have an issue is when ordinary individuals oppose the Pope in spiritual matters due pure opinion rather than actual theological issues (e.g. people like Mel Gibson).

    Trust Benedict, he knows what he’s doing.

  • Anonymous

    Popes can make mistakes, except when issuing Ex Cathedra pronouncements under tight guidelines. 

    How can an individual know when a Pope is in error?  When he sees that Pope say or do something which is contrary to what the Church has taught down the ages. 

    It does not require any special privileges or God-given gifts to realise that when someone (be they ever so high) says that a stone dropped from a tower will fly upwards when everyone knows it will fall earthwards must be in error.  It is the duty of all Catholics, when faced with such clear instances, to correct the person in error.

    The Traditional Latin Mass has been almost universally displaced by the Novus Ordo confection designed by Archbishop Bugnini and his panel of Protestant advisors contrary to the Declarations of the Council of Trent.  The Popes of the Conciliar Church did not and do not have the right to impose this new form of Mass and I am quite in order to say so whilst still maintaining my loyalty to the Papal Office. It is not my pure opinion when I make that claim.  It is what the Church has always maintained.

    I have heard it said that Pope Benedict XVI does not intend to carry out Mary’s instruction to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart because he feels he is too much of a realist to believe that she could deliver the promise she has made (the conversion of Russia and a period of peace throughout the world).

     Does that opinion of his sound as if it comes from a man who “knows what he is doing”?  Does it really sound like the sort of thing that Our Lord would have expected in response to a message delivered at Fatima by His own mother?

    Have I successfully resolved the issue you had?

  • Lee Der Heerskinderen Lovelock

    Pertinent here is ‘ is the consecration of Russia’. It should not be of consequence that because they are ‘Orthodox’, they need no converting for they are still schismatic and Mother Mary through her grace derived straight from The LORD himself, has just been ignored. With the Novus Ordo, it is a hideous aberration which fulfils the ‘bare’ minimum extrinsically but is intrinsically devoid of any catholic and orthodox teaching. When I, as a former Anglican, can go to a false mass (that outside the Catholic Church) and basically get along fine with all the responses, know the readings because of the common lectionary with the only difference been the exclusion of The Pop from bidding prayers, Hail Mary and Agnus Dei, there is no hiding that the Novus Ordo is a disgusting and thoroughly hideous aberration of the highest order

  • Lee Der Heerskinderen Lovelock

    I pray that it will disappear along with the wolves,equivocal teaching and inconoclastic churches each day.

  • Lloydie Vuitton

    We Love the new missal in France. I can expect that the Americans will dislike the new missal given their notoriety against the Church in the recent years.

  • Lee Der Heerskinderen Lovelock If anyone is interested why the Novus Ordo is just not plausible for many Catholics, please read this.

  • T P Johnson

    Rather than congratulating themselves for belatedly publishing a more faithful tranlsation of their invalid counterfeit rite of Mass, the leaders of the Novus Ordo sect would do better to apologise to their adherents for subjecting them to such a totally faithless translation in the first place.
    It’s taken them 40 years to make these simple changes. Contrast this with the 3 years it took Antipope Paul VI and the Freemason Bugnini not only to create their new protestantised missal but to impose it upon the whole world to boot.

  • Stateman26

    Too bad the pope didn’t read some of the terrible collects and prefaces for Lent and Advent. Apart from the presentation ceremony, it may have been the only occasion, and will remain the only occasion, when Benedict XVI so much as cracks open the missal.    Bishop Roche had to be crossing his fingers when he told the pope, it was received well. How would he know?  I’m sure he was hoping and praying the pope wouldn’t look too closely at the Pell missal’s most glaring defects.

    As for handing in homework 10 years late, that’s a good one.  Now ICEL and Vox Clara deserve a failing grade to be sure.  Why not just go back to celebrating the pre-1955 Mass and the 1970 OF using the Douai-Rheims translation? Something Rome should have authorized in the first place just after the Council ended.

    Instead, it has been one story after another of missed opportunities and continuing blundering artless endeavors.

  • K. Smith

    Catholics dutifully turning up to Mass and going through the motions are not receiving this [often daft in places: 'chalice' , 'and with your spirit', 'a place of refreshment' 'we dare to say...' etc] new translation ‘well’. They are just being ‘good’ Catholics. I pray for the day when a sensible, pious,  literate and English-sympathetic translator will be able to treat this job with the understanding it deserves. In the meantime I suppose I’ll continue to ‘go through the motions’, knowing that God knows us, in spite of the stuff that comes out of our mouths.

  • K. Smith

    The more it is ‘studied’, the more silly bits of it seem. It seems as if those who support this imposition have little little sympathy with the spirit of the English language or with the gospel message. 

  • K. Smith

    A person may read the tablet…Does that put that person into a box of some sort? I have read ‘Mein Kampf’ [as part of my historical studies...terrible nonsense] …Does that make me a raving Nazi? I have also read ‘The Manifest of the Communist Party’, does that make me a Marxist?  What do you expect from ‘those people’? Where on earth did you get your 95% from? I am as scepical of your claim as I am of this rather silly [in places] new translation. People I have spoken to haven’t really thought too deeply about this new translation. They have gone along with things because that really is what Catholics ‘do’.

  • Fr.Alcuin

    Nothing will be better than the time when the Novus Ordo however tarted
    up it is, is dumped and scratched from the sight of Catholics in The
    Latin Rite and the Old Mass given its place again as the Eternal Mass.
    The “tarted up” Novus Ordo is here to stay.  So, I’d become accustomed to it.  English is the lingua franca of the world and the Catholic Church, not Latin.

  • Stateman26

    Only ecumenical councils can speak “ex cathedra”. No patriarch, east or west, can ever speak infallibly.

  • Guest

    You are speaking heresy.

  • Deesis

    The reissueing of the Missal after Trent preserved local variations and those of various religious orders like the Carmelites, Norbertines, Carthusians, Domincans, etc and any other regional missal that was over 200 years old like that of Milan. The reissued Missal removed a few sequences (hymns) that were less than 200 years old. It was identical to that of the Missal used prior to Trent in Rome. The question really to what extent the form of a sacrament can be changed and whether the changed missal of 1970 was truely that envisaged by the majority of good bishops at the Second Vatican Council? the answer is off course the new missal was a fiat accompli being put together after the Council and by a hand picked committee with a loaded majority of vandals like Bugnini. Just because we have the 1970 now doesn’t mean looking at the text of Vatican II that what we have is what was actually envisaged or authorised by the majority of good bishops!

  • Deesis

    There we have it because the present Pope Benedict has actually said that he does not possess the authority to tamper with apostotolic tradition. It is true that the proof of the 1970 Missal will be how long it lasts. Paul VI will be judged by history and the disconnect caused by the new Missal will eventually cause it to be rejected.

  • Deesis

    Is that infallible?

  • Deesis

    Ok so let us have the old Missal with parts in English like Vatican II wanted?

  • Deesis

    How true you are? Many a poor priest and layman were called traitors and persecuted when they pointed out the old translation into English was more an approximation! There is something about group dynamics that makes it difficult to say the obvious when they are too trusting. Now with the new translation will the Church apologise to those who were right? Will the hippes at ICEL be banished…NO

  • Deesis

    If they are concerned about how things are received why not look at the empty parishes after the changes in 1970. Clearly things have not been well received when even I find going to Mass as difficult as eating allbran! It is like looking at the Mona Lisa with graffiti on it!

  • Deesis

    It is pity Mr Smith you did not know Latin better. What we say is closer to what it says and means! You talk like a high Church Anglican not a Catholic!

  • AlleluiaPTL

    Interesting that the version presented to the Pope was the CTS version which shows English beside the Latin!!
    Why could he not  have had the Redemptorist edition  which does have the Latin but are not side by side?