Not a good translation for thothe wif a listhp

I have a very slight lisp which means i have trouble with some phrases. I clearly remember once many years ago reading the passion narrative from the NIV bible which spoke of “Barabbas of the insurrectionists”… Shades of Monty Python’s Life of Brian there.

Well, tonight I tried to say the collect for the day at prayer time. It is the new translation for the feast of the Guardian Angels. It began:

O God, who in your unfathomable providence…

Fail. (For lithspers anyway).

About Schütz

I am a PhD candidate & sessional academic at Australian Catholic University in Melbourne, Australia. After almost 10 years in ministry as a Lutheran pastor, I was received into the Catholic Church in 2003. I worked for the Archdiocese of Melbourne for 18 years in Ecumenism and Interfaith Relations. I have been editor of Gesher for the Council of Christians & Jews and am guest editor of the historical journal “Footprints”. I have a passion for pilgrimage and pioneered the MacKillop Woods Way.
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7 Responses to Not a good translation for thothe wif a listhp

  1. Matthias says:

    Just remember Wodger and Woderick would also have the same trouble

    Incidentally I was at the Cathedral for the 8am Mass for Guardian Angels.

  2. Joshua says:


    I’ve never noticed any such lisp – you’re too self-critical!

    The best example of a real tongue twister I know is that in the lovely Anglican prayer (now happily adopted as part of the Patrimony brought into full communion by our Ordinariate friends) called the General Thanksgiving, which may be used at Mattins and Evensong, and, I hear, is popular at Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament among Ordinariate congregations in England: the phrase I refer to is “for thine inestimable love”.

  3. Matthias says:

    I like the part from the order of Burial of the Book of Common Prayer,that reminds us of our mortality.
    ‘man who is born of woman hath but a short time to live” .
    and david like Joshua I would say ‘what lisp”?
    Hope you and the fmaily are well and that you Joshua are well.

  4. English is often called a “hissing language” by the French, who, whether by design or accident, have eliminated many of the sibilants from pronunciation, while the Italians say “you speak French, you spit English, but you sing Italian”. Maybe you should try Latin, David? But then, in good Lutheran fashion, you are probably leading the family in prayer as the Hausvater, yes? So, how are the new translations being received generally?

  5. My sympathy to all Church lispers, I too battled a childhood lisp for many years. I was cured by 1. my grandfather teaching me to whistle forwards instead of backwards, 2. being taught to “bubble” underwater by a cousin, and 3. singing mysterious hymns with unpronounceable texts. My Catholic Church community invariably produces a communal mumble at the word “consubstantial” in the new translation of the Creed. Perhaps singing the Creed would fix it.

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