Are priests allowed to use this Consecratory prayer?

I went to Mass today and the priest said:

“This is the Chalice of my Blood, the Blood of the new and everlasting covenant. It will be shed for you and for many so that sins may be forgiven.”

He also said Chalice whenever the word “Cup” appears in the Canon.

I went into the sacristy after Mass and asked him why he did that, and he said that priests were allowed to make those changes, because they are part of the upcoming revision of the missal. He said priests were allowed to start making that change to the Mass.

I had never heard this before; can anyone weigh in on this?

Yes indeed, the text to the consecration will be a little bit revised, so that it can be more in line with that of the official Latin text.

In the case of “It will be shed for you and for many so that sins may be forgiven.”, the original latin says “pro multis”…which means exactly that, “for many”, as opposed to “for all”. By the way, this same change has already been happening in Mexico. I remember that at least since last summer that the priests there were already saying “por muchos” as opposed to “por todos”.

I don’t know about the word “chalice”, but if your priest said so about this change, then it probably is true, for there will be many other changes or corrections of the English text so that it can be a more faithful translation to the official Latin. (update: I just checked, and yes, the official Latin text actually says “Calix” which is “chalice” in English.)

See the PDFs on this page from the USCCB website for the new translations.

OTOH, he probably should not be anticipating using the revised translation of the Ordinary and Canons (which may be downloaded for study). The revised English missal is NOT supposed to be introduced piecemeal.

There is a possibility, however unlikely, that he is using these translations under a special indult; I just don’t know.

No, priests are not allowed to make those changes. The texts he is using are not approved for liturgical use at the present time.

As bpbasilphx posted, there is a very remote possibility that Rome may have granted some indults to use this text on an experimental basis (that does happen sometimes), but if such an unusual exception had been made, he would most likely have said as much. There is no permission (none at all) for priests in general to start using these new translations as they see fit. In fact, the introductions to these texts say very explicitly that they are not to be used.

No, they should not be using the new translations because they have not yet received the recognition from Rome. Until that time it means that he is changing the words of the Mass that are in the Sacramentary, which is not allowed. While the bishops have approved the new translation, they have asked that they not be implemented until the bishops say so, at the earliest probably Advent 2010. They started doing this in South Africa, with disasterous results, and Rome told them to stop until the translations are approved. Changes to the mass were introduced piecemeal in the late 60’s and as I remember it made for really bad liturgy and confusion. It is better to make all the changes at once, which is what the bishops are asking for, not jumping the gun.

It’s hard to recall, but he seemed to be saying that he was somehow authorized to use those words. Maybe I should ask him for documentation.

Some of the new translation has indeed received the recognitio from Rome, but Rome has not yet granted the permission for them to be used in the liturgy.

The Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments has made it clear that the new translation is not yet permitted for liturgical use. It is available for study and preparation, but not for active use: “the Congregation does not intend that these texts should be put into liturgical use immediately. Instead, the granting now of the recognitio to this crucial segment of the Roman Missal will provide time for the pastoral preparation of priests, deacons and for appropriate catechesis of the lay faithful.”

Just so that readers understand: it happens sometimes (rarely, very rarely) that individual priests or small groups of priests are permitted by special indult to use texts on an experimental basis. It’s not practical to approve a text by merely reading the words on a page, the words have to be “tested” to see if they actually work–there might be a really bad tongue twister in there which doesn’t come out until the words are spoken in context, just for example.

The key word that both bpbasilphx and I have used is “indult” a special permission by a competent authority to do something which is otherwise unlawful. We’ve also both been careful to say that such an indult is very unlikely. After all, we owe it to that anonymous priest to at least express the one way that what he’s doing might be licit. Such indults are a rare privilege, and a priest who is granted that would most likely be very open about sharing that information, most especially when asked directly about using the text.

I know in my own experience as a choir director, a musical setting or pointing of text that works alone at the desk will NOT work in a choir rehearsal.

And just because the glitch is corrected in rehearsal does NOT mean it will work in the service!

On an aside note, I cannot help but wonder why so many bishops put up such a fight AGAINST a more accurate translation from the Latin. What are they THINKING?

Chalice - from the Latin calix, meaning ‘cup’ :slight_smile:

I know from my own experience with liturgical texts that translation is an art, not a science.

For example, certain of the hymns of the Byzantine tradition refer to the Theotokos as a “cow” and “heifer”. Should these texts be literally translated into English?

Many of the texts for 1 September–Ecclesiastical New Year–are basically, “Hip, hip, hooray for the red-blooded Byzantine Emperor and squash all those Persians”: sentiiments that provoke a a sense of unreality in 21st century America, to put it sweetly.

And some things just never sound quite the same in one language as they do in another, especially when idioms are literally translated. Is a “lady-killer” someone who kills ladies, or a lady who kills others? The English idiom actually means neither.

In short, what constitutes an “accurate translation” is not infrequently subject to debate.

Oh no. As many posters have said, Rome has already granted the recognitio for the new English translation for the Order of Mass, including those conferences that actually hadn’t submitted the texts officially to Rome yet!

In the case of South Africa, Rome has granted an indult for that region to continue to use the new translation while the Bishops catch up on the catechetical duties. For the rest of us, we have to wait for the promulgation date to use them licitly.

I know the Msgr who was Cardinal Maida of Detroit’s Secretary. He had permission to say Mass using the sample texts for precisely the reasons you outlined.

know the Msgr who was Cardinal Maida of Detroit’s Secretary. He had permission to say Mass using the sample texts for precisely the reasons you outlined.

So how was it? How did the people take to it? Was the assembly using the new responses (e.g. “And with your spirit”) also?

I don’t know if it was ever used publically.

“HIC EST CALIX SANGUINIS MEI” are the essential words required for the consecration of the wine. According to my dictionary of Ecclesiastical Latin, “calix” can be translated as “chalice, goblet or cup.” So, as long as the priest states “This is the chalice/goblet/cup of my blood,” then you have nothing to fear as to the validity of the form. However, the fact that both Scripture and Tradition have NEVER used “PRO OMNIS” (for all), but rather “PRO MULTIS” (for many), in restating Christ’s words at the last supper is food for thought.

The First Vatican Council states in Chapter 3. On faith:

  1. Wherefore, by divine and catholic faith all those things are to be believed which are contained in the word of God as found in Scripture and Tradition, and which are proposed by the Church as matters to be believed as divinely revealed, whether by her solemn judgment or in her Ordinary and Universal Magisterium.

Since these words of Christ as found in Scripture and Tradition are “for many,” then this is what must be believed with divine and catholic faith.

The First Vatican Council states in Chapter 4, On Faith and Reason:

  1. God cannot deny Himself, nor can truth ever be in opposition to truth. The appearance of this kind of specious contradiction is chiefly due to the fact that either the dogmas of faith are not understood and explained in accordance with the mind of the Church, or unsound views are mistaken for the conclusions of reason.

  2. Therefore We define that every assertion contrary to the truth of enlightened faith is totally false.

Since the words of Christ as presented at every Mass I can recall have been “for all,” I can easily conclude using the infallible teaching of the First Vatican Council that to say “for all” is totally false. So, really, if the priest believes he is going to have to account for his action before Christ, he would use “for many” rather than make a deceptive and heretical statement in front of the entire congregation.

Here are my sources of Scripture and Tradition:

Matthew Ch. 26

28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto remission of sins.

Mark Ch. 14

23 And having taken the chalice, giving thanks, he gave it to them. And they all drank of it. 24 And he said to them: This is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many.

Ordinary of the Tridentine Mass - 1962 Edition



Ordo Missae Cum Populo - 1975 edition



– Nicole

What they seem to be thinking, at least in part, is what “more accurate” actually means. There are some who do not object to accurate translations, but disagree that accurate of necessity means using English words that are not of general usage presently.

What concerns me here is that you seem to be forgetting that the Church defines what is a valid and licit Mass. We can certainly engage in discussions about whether or not a particular text is a good translation into the vernacular, or a poor one. But our discussions will not change the fact that the Church says that the novus ordo is a valid and licit Mass, and indeed it is.

A priest cannot take it upon himself to change the words of the Eucharistic Canons. He can’t do it because he feels that one translation is better. The Church has decided to change the words of consecration in English from the current version to one which is indeed a more accurate translation of the Latin. Therefore, the fact that the upcoming translation is better can be taken as a given. Yet this does not change the objective fact that a priest who uses any canon which the Church has not approved for liturgical use, is acting in disobedience. There is simply no excuse, and no justification for it.

Personally, I am looking forward with anticipation to the final approval of the new, better translation. But at the present time it cannot be licitly used.

I notice that you quote the first Vatican council. Please take a moment to read (or re-read) the part where the Council speaks about the authority of the Vicar of Christ.

You wrote that the current translation is “deceptive and heretical” That’s a very serious charge, even if it is made only on an internet forum. Please exercise some caution here because the words about using the current text apply to the Vicar of Christ who uses those words of consecration himself when he celebrates Mass in English. I believe that the Holy Father himself is in a much better position to judge what constitutes “deceptive and heretical.”

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