THE ASSOCIATION of Catholic Priests is to meet in Portlaoise next Thursday, June 2nd, to discuss rejection by the Catholic bishops of their request that the introduction of the new Roman missal be postponed for five years.
The missal, produced by the International Commission on English in the Liturgy, in consultation with the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship, is to be introduced in all Catholic churches throughout the island by Sunday, November 27th next.
The association has expressed “pastoral, theological, linguistic and literary” concerns about texts in the new missal and its leadership team was asked at a meeting of priests in Athlone last January to seek a meeting with the bishops to discuss those concerns and to request that introduction of the missal be postponed.
A subsequent statement from the association said it was “gravely concerned that this literal translation from Latin has produced texts that are archaic, elitist and obscure and not in keeping with the natural rhythm, cadence and syntax of the English language”
It pointed out that “many women will be rightly enraged by the continued deliberate use of non-inclusive language”.
The association of priests “strongly opposes the introduction and use of any texts which will insult and offend women who are at the heart of every Christian community in Ireland”.
The statement suggested “that the Irish bishops take a lead from the German bishops, who have objected to ‘good German texts’ being replaced with ‘unfamiliar new interpretations’ and to assert the right of the Irish conference of bishops to make its own decisions in regard to the celebration of the liturgy in Ireland”.
The association has invited the bishops and some lay groups to attend next week’s meeting, which is closed to the public and media.