Eucharistic Prayer III

I attended a mass this morning at a cathedral and when the priest who was celebrating the Mass began the Eucharistic Prayer Three, he said: “…so that from the rising of the sun to its setting a perfect offering may be made to …” The Sacramentary listed “…from east to west a perfect offering may be made to…”. Does any know why the priest said “from the rising of the sun to its setting” instead of “from east to west”?? I noticed this every time I’ve been to the Mass with him celebrating it.


I can’t speculate on “why” the priest did this. All I can say is that no priest is ever permitted to change the words of the Eucharistic prayers. Those words must be spoken exactly as they are written. There’s no license to do this, and there’s no excuse for doing so.

One of the Paulists used to do that. It got on my nerves. It’s wrong. Here is what Redemptionis Sacramentum says:

[51.] Only those Eucharistic Prayers are to be used which are found in the Roman Missal or are legitimately approved by the Apostolic See, and according to the manner and the terms set forth by it. "It is not to be tolerated that some Priests take upon themselves the right to compose their own Eucharistic Prayers"129 or to change the same texts approved by the Church, or to introduce others composed by private individuals.130

Thus, what he is doing is, unfortunately, wrong.

It might be that the altar book the Priest was actually using made an unauthorized change.

These things do happen.

It could also be he’s jumping the gun based on the approved for study (though not yet for use) new translation of the Ordinary, which is available from the USCCB website.

While this version of the Ordinary is supposed to be the Omega Finis version, it won’t actually come into use until the whole Missal is translated and approved.

This is how EP III shows up in the new translation:

so that from the rising of the sun to its setting
a pure sacrifice may be offered to your name.

However, like you noted, we are not allowed to use the new version until such time as entire Roman Missal has been approved.

Actually this is nothing compared to what one of our campus chaplains would do for weekday masses. He had a small red book which contained un-authorised canons. The students would listen intently for the words “This is my Body” and “This is My Blood” etc. so we’d know whether we were actually getting a valid communion. Since it was a secular college in a fairly small town we were happy Fr. Charlie was there at all. There were 3 Catholic parishes off campus all of which were a distance from campus. If there were weekday masses they were at the crack of dawn.

This might give you some comfort: I recall seeing a “small red book” with additional canons which were actually approved by the Holy See. I don’t recall much about them (save that after reading them I decided not to use them). I do not know if they are currently approved for use (as opposed to a temporary permission). Do you recall anything more about that book?

These were the so-called Swiss Canons. I showed them to my pv back when he was pastor of another parish. He did not much care for them either. He said that they lacked beauty and majesty. Great minds think alike, Fr. David.

Vere Sanctus es, Domine, et merito te laudat omnis a te condita creatura, quia per Filium tuum, Dominum nostrum Iesum Christum, Spiritus Sancti operante virtute, vivificas et sanctificas universa, et populum tibi congregare non desinis, ut a solis ortu usque ad occasum oblatio munda offeratur nomini tuo.
Father, you are holy indeed, and all creation rightly gives you praise. All life, all holiness comes from you through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, by the working of the Holy Spirit. From age to age you gather a people to yourself, so that from east to west a perfect offering may be made to the glory of your name.

The Latin text in boldface type actually means, literally translated, from the rising to the setting of the sun, which is why the new translation will be amended. I have heard several priests use the words in English over the last twenty years; most do it to reflect the Latin text more accurately, which conveys a sense of time, rather than geography. However, I agree that they should not anticipate the new translation and wait until it is promulgated.

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