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  #1  
Old May 10, '12, 2:18 am
sasg sasg is offline
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Default Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

Before I pose my question, let me first say this: the priest at my parish is an extremely devoted, reverent, and humble man, very pastoral, who shows a great deal of reverence for the church and for the Mass he celebrates, and I have a great deal of respect for him as a priest and as a person. Please, after reading my question, refrain from launching an attack on my priest's character or motivations. He has given literally his entire life to the church (and he is not a young man!), and he deserves our respect.

Here is the issue I am facing: during the Nicene Creed, when we say "for us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven ...", the priest in my parish omits the word "men", so that he says "for us [pause] and for our salvation he came down from heaven ...". He has done this repeatedly since the new translation was introduced. Please note that the printed text of the Creed in our weekly order of Mass contains "men", and our priest has never made any effort whatsoever to induce people into omitting "men".

I have a great deal of respect for the Creed, and there is a certain magnificence in all Catholics throughout the world making the exact same statement of faith in unison every week. My priest's omission bothers me because it seems to be intentionally separating him and our parish from the rest of the church. It has also caused a minor confusion, for example most of the choir do not say "men" out of deference to our priest.

Here is my question: I am looking for advice about what, if anything, to do about this. Do you think I should tell Father that his ommission bothers me? Should I approach him after Mass, or perhaps in private? Should I write a letter? Conversely, should I do nothing at all? On the one hand, intentionally changing the text of the Nicene Creed is not good, and as I said, the choir (and potentially other parisioners) also recite the Creed incorrectly as a result. On the other hand, who am I to notice the speck in his eye without taking care of the log in my own?

Please, I am not looking for anybody to excoriate my priest for this, or tear into him for his perceived faults or supposed disobedience. I am not defending his action, and I am not looking for additional reasons why intentionally misstating the Nicene Creed is wrong. I am merely looking for advice as to what (if anything) I should do.

Thank you for your help.
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  #2  
Old May 10, '12, 2:28 am
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Filii Dei Filii Dei is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

Quote:
Originally Posted by sasg View Post
Before I pose my question, let me first say this: the priest at my parish is an extremely devoted, reverent, and humble man, very pastoral, who shows a great deal of reverence for the church and for the Mass he celebrates, and I have a great deal of respect for him as a priest and as a person. Please, after reading my question, refrain from launching an attack on my priest's character or motivations. He has given literally his entire life to the church (and he is not a young man!), and he deserves our respect.

Here is the issue I am facing: during the Nicene Creed, when we say "for us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven ...", the priest in my parish omits the word "men", so that he says "for us [pause] and for our salvation he came down from heaven ...". He has done this repeatedly since the new translation was introduced. Please note that the printed text of the Creed in our weekly order of Mass contains "men", and our priest has never made any effort whatsoever to induce people into omitting "men".

I have a great deal of respect for the Creed, and there is a certain magnificence in all Catholics throughout the world making the exact same statement of faith in unison every week. My priest's omission bothers me because it seems to be intentionally separating him and our parish from the rest of the church. It has also caused a minor confusion, for example most of the choir do not say "men" out of deference to our priest.

Here is my question: I am looking for advice about what, if anything, to do about this. Do you think I should tell Father that his ommission bothers me? Should I approach him after Mass, or perhaps in private? Should I write a letter? Conversely, should I do nothing at all? On the one hand, intentionally changing the text of the Nicene Creed is not good, and as I said, the choir (and potentially other parisioners) also recite the Creed incorrectly as a result. On the other hand, who am I to notice the speck in his eye without taking care of the log in my own?

Please, I am not looking for anybody to excoriate my priest for this, or tear into him for his perceived faults or supposed disobedience. I am not defending his action, and I am not looking for additional reasons why intentionally misstating the Nicene Creed is wrong. I am merely looking for advice as to what (if anything) I should do.

Thank you for your help.
I do believe it is only right that you bring it up with your priest, in some private channel. Try sending a humbly-worded letter to him, or meet with him after Mass to have a quiet word. Do not attempt to start a confrontation and do not lose your temper, but do patiently insist on the issue. It is true that we are all sinners, and sometimes we are worse sinners than others, but it does not mean that everything we say is invalid. The priest has an obligation to give us correct liturgy and Tradition, and you are merely helping him achieve it.

I believe your priest has good intentions to not appear chauvinist, but they are wrong and misplaced, causing even more problems as a result. It is inexcusable to omit anything from the Creed as given to us by our Church Fathers, and it causes the sentence to take on a different meaning, giving the impression that Jesus died just for us Catholics and not for mankind. Its potential for disruption also shows in the fact that it changes the Creed as memorised and recited by the congregation, disrupting the reverence and flow of the Mass all because the congregation trips themselves up over a single word.

As is often said, "the road to hell is paved with good intentions". Do not let it lead your priest and his flock to ruin.
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  #3  
Old May 10, '12, 3:25 am
Hokomai Hokomai is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

Say 'for us humans' instead. It is more accurate. Or 'people'.
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  #4  
Old May 10, '12, 4:47 am
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

Just go and ask him if he omits it on purpose or such, do it in private. "Men" in most languages is an inclusive verb that includes women as well, just as saying mankind does not mean only the male part of the species. There really is on reason to change the creed to reflect any other meaning, it's already there. It's picking straws and arguing semantics to do otherwise.
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  #5  
Old May 10, '12, 7:00 am
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Stylites Stylites is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

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Originally Posted by sasg View Post
I am merely looking for advice as to what (if anything) I should do.
Follow your heart. If something is bothering you then speak with him about it.

Not directing these words to you particularly, but in general people will come to the forums and ask complete strangers for advice on why their priests do x-y-z, rather than ask their priests themselves.
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  #6  
Old May 10, '12, 7:21 am
1ke 1ke is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

Speak with your priest, privately of course. Point out what you have observed, that his actions serve as an example to others and that changing the Creed is wrong. Ask that he say this part of the Mass correctly and be an example for all parishioners.

The Creed is very important and our Bishops at Nicea chose their words carefully.
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  #7  
Old May 10, '12, 9:26 am
JimG JimG is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

Possibly he doesn't realize the generic usage of the word "men" and wants to be inclusive. But he needs to follow the text.
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  #8  
Old May 10, '12, 10:01 am
Tantum ergo Tantum ergo is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hokomai View Post
Say 'for us humans' instead. It is more accurate. Or 'people'.
Regardless of whether you think it more accurate (and sorry, in English 'men' does not refer solely to 'male humans only' but both male and female humans, so it is PERFECTLY accurate). . .the GIRM and the English translation of the Mass as promulgated in 2011 do not permit 'ad libbing' or changes of words.

What I believe might be happening is that the priest may be saying the word 'men' (which is a short word of one syllable) so quietly that he is not heard. And he may not even be doing so deliberately. The combination of a 'meh- and 'nnnn' sound after a 'sssss' sound (us) may have the 'sss' sound overriding the 'meh' part, and the 'nnnn' sound might be overridden by the following 'and' with ITS -nnnahhnd sound.

Many people tend to 'drop' their voices or pitch at the end of a word or phrase, or to unconsciously 'soften' the voice at same.

So it is possible that Father's personal voice quality just isn't 'registering' the 'men' part.
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  #9  
Old May 10, '12, 10:58 am
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Armyvet007 Armyvet007 is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

Quote:
Originally Posted by sasg View Post
Before I pose my question, let me first say this: the priest at my parish is an extremely devoted, reverent, and humble man, very pastoral, who shows a great deal of reverence for the church and for the Mass he celebrates, and I have a great deal of respect for him as a priest and as a person. Please, after reading my question, refrain from launching an attack on my priest's character or motivations. He has given literally his entire life to the church (and he is not a young man!), and he deserves our respect.

Here is the issue I am facing: during the Nicene Creed, when we say "for us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven ...", the priest in my parish omits the word "men", so that he says "for us [pause] and for our salvation he came down from heaven ...". He has done this repeatedly since the new translation was introduced. Please note that the printed text of the Creed in our weekly order of Mass contains "men", and our priest has never made any effort whatsoever to induce people into omitting "men".

I have a great deal of respect for the Creed, and there is a certain magnificence in all Catholics throughout the world making the exact same statement of faith in unison every week. My priest's omission bothers me because it seems to be intentionally separating him and our parish from the rest of the church. It has also caused a minor confusion, for example most of the choir do not say "men" out of deference to our priest.

Here is my question: I am looking for advice about what, if anything, to do about this. Do you think I should tell Father that his ommission bothers me? Should I approach him after Mass, or perhaps in private? Should I write a letter? Conversely, should I do nothing at all? On the one hand, intentionally changing the text of the Nicene Creed is not good, and as I said, the choir (and potentially other parisioners) also recite the Creed incorrectly as a result. On the other hand, who am I to notice the speck in his eye without taking care of the log in my own?

Please, I am not looking for anybody to excoriate my priest for this, or tear into him for his perceived faults or supposed disobedience. I am not defending his action, and I am not looking for additional reasons why intentionally misstating the Nicene Creed is wrong. I am merely looking for advice as to what (if anything) I should do.

Thank you for your help.
He might not even be aware he is omitting it due to the way he [as you describe] pauses in saying it. When I did re-enlistment ceremonies in the Army I would often unintentionally omit words simply due to where I placed pauses in the oath.
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  #10  
Old May 10, '12, 12:00 pm
superamazingman superamazingman is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

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Originally Posted by Hokomai View Post
Say 'for us humans' instead. It is more accurate. Or 'people'.
Say "for us men" because that's what the church has asked of us, and if you got past 3rd grade english, you'd know that it refers to both genders.
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  #11  
Old May 10, '12, 1:49 pm
Hokomai Hokomai is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

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Originally Posted by superamazingman View Post
Say "for us men" because that's what the church has asked of us, and if you got past 3rd grade english, you'd know that it refers to both genders.
As in 'man is a mammal, and suckles his young'? In fact, research shows clearly that the word 'man' invokes an image of - wait for it - a man. The word is not neutral between sexes, and normal use of English over many centuries indicates this.
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  #12  
Old May 10, '12, 2:41 pm
ProVobis ProVobis is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

This is interesting because the revised (first ICEL) translation of the consecration was "for you and for all men" revised later to "for you and for all" to eliminate the possibility of sexist language. Maybe eventually the "men" may be dropped in the Creed as well. Just speculating.
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Old May 10, '12, 2:51 pm
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Theophorus Theophorus is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

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Originally Posted by ProVobis View Post
This is interesting because the revised (first ICEL) translation of the consecration was "for you and for all men" revised later to "for you and for all" to eliminate the possibility of sexist language. Maybe eventually the "men" may be dropped in the Creed as well. Just speculating.
Where about in the consecration? I can only see omnes at this point wich only means "all" not "all (hu)men(s)" as opposed to the homines of the creed which is defiantly The plural of (hu)man.
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  #14  
Old May 10, '12, 3:07 pm
ProVobis ProVobis is offline
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

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Originally Posted by Theophorus View Post
Where about in the consecration?
In the promulgated Latin:

Accipite et bibite ex eo omnes: hic est enim calix sanguinis mei novi et æterni testamenti, qui pro vobis et pro multis effundetur in remissionem peccatorum.

The original translation was "for you and for many," The ICEL revised it to "for you and for all men," the bishops revised it to "for you and for all" and now it's been rerevised to "for you and for many." The "for you and for all men" is still there in the Spanish.
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Old May 10, '12, 3:18 pm
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Default Re: Priest does not say "men" in Nicene Creed

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Originally Posted by ProVobis View Post
In the promulgated Latin:

Accipite et bibite ex eo omnes: hic est enim calix sanguinis mei novi et æterni testamenti, qui pro vobis et pro multis effundetur in remissionem peccatorum.

The original translation was "for you and for many," The ICEL revised it to "for you and for all men," the bishops revised it to "for you and for all" and now it's been rerevised to "for you and for many." The "for you and for all men" is still there in the Spanish.
I see now where you are. So it was revised again to bring it closer to the latin then as there is no mention of men in pro vobis et pro multis where as the creed does contain the word for men - homines. I don't see it being dropped from the creed on an authentic translational basis then.
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