The Third Typical Edition of the Roman Missal offers an option never before seen in a Catholic missal for the Eucharistic Liturgy – and practically unknown even among the major protestant traditions: the option of using the Apostles Creed at the Mass instead of the Nicene Creed “. Given the baptismal character of the Creed, the rubrics suggest that this Creed “may be used” “praesertim tempore Quadragesimae et tempore paschali” (“especially during Lent and Easter Time”).
Apart from any possibile controversy over this “novelty” of this option, from a purely practical point of view the concern has been expressed to me that the minimalists will take over and prefer the Apostles Creed simply because it is shorter (and gets around that shiboleth of the opponents to the new translation: “consubstantial”). Surely not, I thought.
I attended mass in a parish outside my diocese this past weekend, the first weekend of the introduction of people’s parts of the new liturgy. Here is how the priest introduced the Creed: “We won’t be using the Nicene Creed anymore, we’ll use the Apostles Creed. The other one is too long, too long. We will use the shorter one.” Mmmm.
Readers of this ‘ere blog will be well aquainted with the different history, origin and purpose of the two Creeds. There may be times when it is appropriate to use the Apostle’s Creed. After all, at the Easter Vigil, the Nicene Creed is not said, but baptismal vows are renewed by using the ancient Roman Symbol in the form of questions. Nevertheless, there are many aspects that make the Nicene Creed unique and still the preferred “option” for the Mass, such as the confession of the true deity of the Son and the Spirit. A little bit of education about the nature of the two creeds would surely be helpful, rather than watering down the difference to a “word count”.
Otherwise the transistion to the new words of the Liturgy went fairly smoothly. We all (yours truly included) missed the “and with your spirit” at the announcement of the Gospel and responded with “and also with you” – we just were not paying attention. But after that all went okay, as we were redirected to the mass cards in front of us.
Just one thing I noticed about the mass cards being used around Australia for the transitional period. The type face used for the priest’s doxology at the end of the Eucharistic Prayer is slightly different from the typeface used for the priest’s parts on the rest of the card. Like all the priest’s parts, it is in normal print rather than the bold print that is used for the people’s words. But another way in which the priest’s words and the people’s words are differentiated on the card is the use of a slightly smaller font for the priest’s parts. Only at this point, we find that the font-size for the priest’s doxology is the same size as that for the people’s part…
Just something I noticed.