pro multis = "for many"


The Vatican has settled the most prominent issue of contention regarding the English translation of the Mass. CWN reports that Cdl. Arinze has written to the heads of English-speaking bishops' conferences with the news:

The Vatican has ruled that the phrase pro multis should be rendered as "for many" in all new English-language translations of the Eucharistic Prayer, CWN has learned.
Although "for many" is the literal translation of the Latin phrase, the translations currently in use render the phrase as "for all." All new English-language translations will use "for many" when they appear.

This is good news for a couple of reasons: that debatable translation "for all", placed so close to the words of consecration, scandalized traditionalists and gave many scruples about the validity of Masses said in English. As debaters on the issue point out, St. Thomas' opinion even considered them essential to the consecration.

Restoring a undisputed translation of pro multis to the Mass removes an obstacle to reconciliation between the Church and disaffected members of the traditionalist movement. It also confirms to all the partisans struggling over the English liturgy that Pope Benedict and CDW are going to require that new translations conform to the Church's wishes as expressed in Liturgiam Authenticam: the English version of Mass is supposed to be the Roman Mass, so the English words of the Mass should represent the ideas and concepts in the Latin liturgy.

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Good! I'm glad the Vatican ruled on this. Deo gratias! I was so disappointed to see "for all" the leaked drafts of the new translation. Not that I buy the argument that this invalidates the Mass, mind you, but it's a more accurate translation and I foresaw potential decades of more carping from ultratraditionalists if "for all" remained. This should put all that to rest.

I'm glad Rome is putting its foot down, but still wonder why the translators were about to retain "for all" in the first place, despite the calls for a truly *accurate* translation. Getting the ICEL to completely comply is *still* like pulling teeth. Sheesh. Oh well, things are better, at least, so I shouldn't complain. Thanks be to God!

In Jesu et Maria,

What I meant above is that "for many" is a more accurate translation. Sorry I wasn't clear. Guess that happens when you're typing fast and don't proofread :-)

In Jesu et Maria,

Does anybody know when this may be ready for parishes to actually use?

It'll be a while. Translations for the varying ("proper") parts of the Mass have not been reviewed by the bishops yet, let alone sending them to Rome for approval. Rome's not going to issue approvals for any of the texts until all the conferences weigh in.

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