Magnum Principium and Liturgiam Authenticam

A very good article on the Pray Tell blog from Bishop Brian Dunn, Bishop of Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada, on the relationship between the recent motu proprio of Pope Francis, Magnum Principium, that significantly changed the rationale for the translation of liturgical texts that had been set in place by the document Liturgiam Authenticam, which was the former basis for the translation of liturgical texts, and which had provided, for example, the current Roman Missal, the newish Order of Confirmation and other texts that have been translated in recent years.

The nature of the translation of liturgical texts will always be a locus of conversation and debate for no other reason than we are dealing with texts that allow us to give expression to our most fundamental beliefs (lex orandi, lex credendi). It will be interesting to see how the intervention by the Pope on this matter unfolds going forward, but one hope is that the issue of translation of liturgical texts become subject to a ‘political’ battle, constantly changing depending on who happens to sit in the Chair of St Peter. If that were to happen, the only thing that will happen is that the fundamental beliefs that underpin the words we pray will become clouded in uncertainty…and the words will be meaningless and pointless.

The Relationship between Magnum Principium and Liturgicam Authenticam

In his Apostolic Letter issued Motu Proprio, Magnum Principium [MP], Pope Francis has once again raised the topic of the translation, approval and adaptation of liturgical books. He has taken the extraordinary step of modifying canon 838, §§2 & 3 of the Code of Canon Law.

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Article by Andrew Doohan

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