Bilingual Mass?


I am not a seasoned Catholic. I was received into the Church Easter 2013, so this may be common and I just don’t know.

Today, I attended Mass and it was bilingual. The first reading was in Spanish, the second in English. The Gospel reading was done in both languages and there were two homilies. Is this normal?

Thanks for the help!


Yes, this is very common in my area as well, where there is a large population of Hispanics, on Feast Days during which it is expected to have large numbers of both Spanish and English speaking laity attending the Mass.


We do it at my parish. Though it is not very often. Typically, on Holy days of obligation where there will only be one Mass the entire day, Thanksgiving day Mass and Easter Vigil. The languages will be alternated between English and Spanish and normally, 2 homilies. One in English and Spanish. I love it. Though I am of Mexican decent, I am not fluent in Spanish but I love To hear the Spanish hymms and I find them more moving than most of The English hymms for some reason.


It seemed to be more confusing to those in the congregation. Very disorganized but maybe it was planned that way.

The Spanish Mass has its own culture. Hand-clapping to the music. More kids. More devout, IMO. Some of the texts aren’t even followed to the letter.

A lot there an Anglophone doesn’t see eye-to-eye-with and vice versa.

I have seen better success at an EF where the sermon was split into English and Spanish.


At the diocese Chrism mass last Holy Week, We had 3 or 4 languages in the mass. The readings were all in a different languages.

I thought it was very cool and really shows that we belong to a global church not just a single parish or county.


Happens frequently in my part of Quebec as well (French-English). In our case the reason is a shortage of priests, and a relatively small Anglophone community.


Ditto to all of the above answers. I will add though, that in our area, when it’s bi-lingual (Spanish and English) it’s beautiful but so many people get worked up about it. I don’t like to hear “why don’t they go to their Mass?”
It’s everybody’s Mass. :thumbsup:


OK. Cool. I don’t have a problem with it, I just never encountered it. Lol. I’m visiting family in Houston, so there is definitely a large number of Hispanics. No biggie. I really wanted to know more Spanish last night because the priest really got into his homily. I totally want to know what was said. Lol.


The same thing happens at my church. Let’s just bring back the Tridentine Mass and there will be no need for confusing bilingual Masses! :slight_smile:


You know that TLM is still around, right? My home parish does one every week. Never went, but it’s there. :slight_smile:


I’m glad to hear that! I don’t consider myself a “rad-trad” by any means, but I think an element of universality was lost when Novus Ordo became the ordinary form. My parish has three weekend Masses. Saturday night vigil is populated by old white folk. Sunday morning has the young white families. Sunday afternoon is in Espanol and is populated by all the Hispanics. If we celebrated the extraordinary form, it would be easier to integrate my self-segregated parish.


Having said that, it would be impossible to celebrate the Tridentine Mass in my church because it’s one of those ugly 1980s semi-circular churches with no high altar. The tabernacle is off to the side of the sanctuary.


We have a vigil Mass. 3 ordinary form Masses on Sunday in the new church and in the historical church we have TLM, Spanish, Portuguese, and Polish. Polish is twice a month.


I attend TLM so neither!

But on Sunday we get Spanish and English homilies and I think this is a problem. Both can be longer than 20 minutes each!

I lose attention and many people are noticeably fidgeting from both camps. I feel like when I was a kid forced to go to Mass and suffer through some incomprehensible sermon.

IMO this breaks the solemness of Mass.

My region caters so heavily to Spanish speakers it is almost impossible to avoid. More 100% Spanish Masses than 100% English, like 10:1! And pretty much ALL the English Masses I have gone to will mix it up.

No answer, just chiming in.

BTW I love the full Spanish Mass! I used to go to one is Nogales, AZ when I couldn’t get to others. There is reverence I find missing in many English Masses. The way the children will break in joyful songs after the Eucharist something I never see in English Mass.



I hear what you’re saying:
The Mexican community could stand to be better catechized, but the American (US) community could definitely use some of the reverence and devotion that the Mexicans have for the Mass.
We could learn from each other if we would worship TOGETHER.
Likely, we are another generation away from that.
Worshiping in your native language is the most effective.


You mean as we did before they effectively told us we can worship separately?


You mean back when Italians went to the Italian parish, Mexicans went to the Mexican parish, Poles went to the Polish parish, the Portuguese went to the Portuguese parish, Germans went to the German parish and everybody else went to the Irish parish, even though the Mass was in Latin?


I once went to Easter Mass in Puerto Rico. The Mass was in Spanish, with a sprinkling of English here and there. After the homily, which was given by the priest, the deacon gave a short homily in English. He said that they kind of survey the crowd and then decide how much English to have. I was expecting a Spanish Mass, but I appreciated the gesture.

At a Chaldean Church that I have attended, the readings and homily were repeated in three languages - Arabic, Assyrian/Aramaic, and English. I’m pretty sure they do this every Sunday. It made the liturgy very long, but I didn’t mind.

Usually, the bilingual (Spanish-English) Masses that I attend are at the Cathedral, with the bishop presiding. One reading will be in English, the Gospel in Spanish - or the other way around. The homily is usually a mixture of both. The Bishop actually does an amazing job of this, mixing the two languages. I’m surprised that it works, but it does.


No , I mean was we can when we all understand the words. Without having to read them in a book. :thumbsup:


That was another issue.

They ended up in closing and merging some of those parishes, most recently in New York. People can’t be expected to stay at one place for the rest of their lives, as they say.

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