Website Designer  |  ThamesWeb

Copyright © 2015 Gordon Rock. All rights reserved.

Gordon Rock at church organ Gordon Rock

Cookie Policy

The New Pilgrim's Mass logo

Missa de Saeculis 1972

Maybe this setting (Mass of the Ages) should be dedicated to St. Jude, patron saint of lost causes. A Latin Folk Mass? Ridiculous! Yet parts if not all of it may be worth a hearing, not just as an exercise in nostalgia for the rapidly diminishing generation which remembers the Missa de Angelis, but also as a reminder of that ancient heritage which we as Catholics are privileged to enjoy. They are not easy for a congregation, but with a choir (or any good singers) leading the way, the phrases in capital letters do provide an entry even for the "musically challenged".

missa_keyboard.pdf missa_vocal.pdf

The Latin text will of course continue to function as a model for the liturgy, and the 2011 translation produced some crucial improvements by adopting a literal translation of the Latin - notably omnium visibilium et invisibilium (of all things visible and invisible) and pax hominibus bonae voluntatis (peace to men/people of good will).

Unfortunately a “literal” translation does not always convey the true sense of the original. The normal reply to Dominus vobiscum (The Lord be with you) was Et tecum (and with you). My guess is that this was felt to be too brusque, too colloquial, for the formal setting of the mass; hence the formula Et cum spiritu tuo, which while filling out the phrase retained the emphasis on "you".

So did the 2011 translation "And also with you". The translation "And with your spirit" fails to do this; indeed it virtually changes the subject. Why do we suddenly focus on the celebrant's spirit when we are simply exchanging greetings? Dare one suggest "And with yourself" as a viable alternative? It's quite an elegant phrase, with its roots in the Emerald Isle. What's more, both versions can be spoken simultaneously!