Revision of the Liturgy of the Hours?

Okay, so now we have a nice new translation of the missal – when are we going to have a revision of the Liturgy of the Hours?

It seems that there is movement at the station (or is that “at the ranch”?) in the US, according to this report on Fr Z’s site.

As the Lutheran Catechism would say “What does this mean for us?”

I don’t know. I note that they say “The International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL) has been consulted regarding its role in producing draft translations of certain elements”, but I get the impression from this that the revision of the LOTH will be a local arrangement rather than an international one as the missal was. This would be unfortunate, I think. Why should not the English speaking Church “pray with one voice”?

What are the elements involved? Mainly the choice of the version of the psalms and scripture. And that links up with the issue of the lectionary. With regard to the Pslams, I think we will be using the new Revised Grail ourselves here in the future, just as the US will be. But we are going to be using the ESV for Scripture, and they are still using their NAB produced by the USCCB themselves.

Then there is the issue of the antiphons. Surely these could be unified? Yet we don’t even know yet what is happening with the antiphons in our lectionary, let alone in the LOTH.

The Collects, of course, should be standardised with the Missal. I expect this will mean that both American and Australian (and English for that matter) versions should be the same. What about the intercessions? They could do with a bit of “fixing up”.

What are your thoughts?

About Schütz

I am Catholic, married to Cathy, father of Maddy & Mia. Since 2002, I have been the Executive Officer of the Ecumenical & Interfaith Commission of the Archdiocese of Melbourne. I was once a Lutheran pastor, but a "year of grace" and soul-searching led me into the Catholic Church. It was a bumpy ride, but with the support of my (still Lutheran) wife, I was finally confirmed on June 16, 2003.
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8 Responses to Revision of the Liturgy of the Hours?

  1. mike cliffson says:

    First reaction :OMG! better leave well alone, Im getting too old for change!
    2nd : For family reasons, mix English and Spanish , and the intercessions in English are palpably awful. They are like a lamestreammedia tendencious quote.
    3rd – one of the justifications for the ICEL steamroller was precisely “to pray with one voice” .
    The sheer badness of Icel has been suffiently if far from completely gone into and gone over on internet – maybe another commentator can give you a VERY long post.
    The hows are unbelievable. The relevant authorites were warned that openly heretical translations were being proposed for liturgy, and it would seem felt their job was done if about half of them were – badly- dealt with.
    I’d say, apart from the office of readings, for the BRE/US thing, go back to shakepearean English if any can be found to do it – noone will understand it to begin with,does that matter? Alternatively, douay challoner.

    • Schütz says:

      I think you are confusing “old ICEL” with “new ICEL”, Mike. New ICEL was responsible for the new Missal translation. Unless you meant that you DON’T like the new Missal translation…

      My thought is that at least the collects of the LOTH and the Missal should be the same, and the version of the psalms used in both. Next step would be that where the antiphons to the psalms appear in both the lectionary and the LOTH, it should be the same translation. Finally, the scripture translation should be the same in both liturgies. And yes, fix those intercessions – there is a standard latin for these, I believe.

      • mike cliffson says:

        for me Icel =Old icel , evidently.
        Im not sure about the psalms – I mean, if I can’t have my ideal, a reversion to Shakespearean English , they should be preferably sung, and different wordings sing differently depending on tunes and such, if you follow me. I d like to see some sort of authorization for that – I mean translations can be heretical. You know, a little note saying which translations are approved for this purpose, and which aren’t, so politically incorrect.

        God bless!

        • mike cliffson says:

          Oh PS
          Yes, the standard latin bidding prayers for the modern LOTH are pst VII and may have their defects, traddies are agin on principle, but to call the present English LOTH intercessions a translation !

  2. Matthias says:

    I found this on the Newman communitywebsite talking about things Liturgical:
    “The Traditional Roman Breviary (1962 edition) in Latin & English: this superb work will be re-printed in the second half of 2012, and those interested are invited to provide their details to the publisher, Baronius Press: http://www.baroniuspress.com/book.php?wid=56&bid=59. This is a tremendous opportunity to take up the Divine Office. We will provide classes on how to use the Breviary following the reprint. “

  3. Catherine says:

    I’d love to see the Liturgy of the Hours revised, and the sooner the better. Going from the inspiring Collects in the latest Mass translation back to the banal ones in the Liturgy of the Hours is a unpalatable contrast that has to be faced with horrid regularity. What is really needed, urgently, is some work done on the Propers for the Saints. I get scandalised each year that there is ONLY a concluding prayer for St Teresa of Avila, St John Mary Vianney, St Alphonsus Ligouri, St Bede the Venerable and many others – illustrious Saints who have extensive written works of enormous spiritual value – surely a line or two could be found for Benedictus and Magnificat antiphons for their Propers.

    • Schütz says:

      But as has been commented, the collects in the current LOTH are reasonably good, even if they don’t conform to the full requirements of Liturgiam Authenticam. It is a very good exercise.

  4. PM says:

    It wouldn’t surpise me if they hasten slowly. The English (as opposed to American) version of the Liturgy of the Hours, while not perfect (the bidding prayers drip of 1970s student earnetness) is much better than the 1973 Missal.

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