Tuesday, September 27, 2005

How The Hell Will We Sing This?

OK, you lot need some more ICEL.... You really do.

Here's the latest Gloria
Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to people of good will.

We praise you,
we bless you,
we adore you,
we glorify you,
we give you thanks for your great glory,
Lord God, heavenly King,
O God almighty Father.

Lord, Jesus Christ, Only-begotten Son,
Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,
you take away the sins of the world,
have mercy on us;
you take away the sins of the world,
receive our prayer;
you are seated at the right hand of the Father,
have mercy on us.

For you alone are the Holy One,
you alone are the Lord,
you alone are the Most High,
Jesus Christ,
with the Holy Spirit,
in the glory of God the Father.
Um, Amen? Hmmm....

Let me just tell you this: when I saw the proposals for the Institution Narrative, I almost wept with fury. It's horrrrrrrible.



Blogger Jeff said...

"when I saw the proposals for the Institution Narrative, I almost wept with fury. It's horrrrrrrible."

Huzzah! That means it's great!

There's nothing more singable about the old Gloria compared to the new. They're both not particularly metrical. We just need some more music...and better music!

And they actually translated the Gloria rather than disfiguring it, which is wonderful! The old ICEL Creed wasn't bad (except for "We" instead of "I", but the Gloria was hideous. Now we get to THANK God for his glory, which is a lot different from just PRAISING him for it. And we get the triple-overlapping invocation at the end (not reduced to two.)

Hey, this is a TRANSLATION. The old one is an adaptation and there's no excuse for it.


27/9/05 13:15  
Blogger Gotpraecht said...

So, we get "people" for hominibus
in the Gloria, but "men/man" when
it's used in the Creed.

Classy work, guys.

27/9/05 13:18  
Blogger J. R. P. said...

I'd chant it like you would a psalm from the divine office. I concur it could be a little more poetic, but it works well enough for me.

I fail to see why it's 'people' here instead of 'men', as in the credo, but perhaps I misremember the latin.

27/9/05 13:23  
Blogger Gotpraecht said...

except for "We" instead of "I"

Oh, I agree. Reverting to the Pisteuomen/"We believe" of the original Greek text was nigh-on

27/9/05 13:24  
Blogger invocante said...

Glory to God in the highest, and peace To his people on earth. Lord God, heavenly King, almighty God and Father, we worship you, we give you Thanks, we praise you for your glory. Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father. Lord God, Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world; have mercy on us; you are seated at the right hand of the Father: receive our prayer. For you alone are the Holy One, you Alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

27/9/05 13:44  
Blogger patrick said...

It's seems pretty close to the Prayer Book Gloria, which is used in the Anglican Use:

GLORY be to God on high,
and in earth peace, good will towards men.

We praise thee,
we bless thee,
we worship thee,
we glorify thee,
we give thanks to thee for thy great glory,
0 Lord God, heavenly King,
God the Father Almighty.

0 Lord, the only begotten Son Jesus Christ;
0 Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,
that takest away the sins of the world,
have mercy upon us.
Thou that takest away the sins of the world,
receive our prayer.
Thou that sittest at the right hand of God the Father,
have mercy upon us.

For thou only art holy;
thou only art the Lord;
thou only, 0 Christ, with the Holy Ghost,
art most high in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

My suggestion: if the translators could scan it a little closer to the Prayer Book Gloria, there are already MANY settings that could be used, including adapting the glorious and stupendous, Healy Willan setting of the Anglican Gloria. It is not an easy setting, but it is, I assure you, a real crowd pleaser.

27/9/05 13:45  
Blogger invocante said...

The point of the post above was to remind us all how awful the current mistranslation is. This draft is a big improvement.

27/9/05 13:46  
Blogger the Savage said...

Please, can we see the "horrible" institution narrative? Any chance that it will "horribly" actually use the ipissima verba of Our Lord rather than what Lutheran exegete Joachim Jeremias thought He should have said in the 1960s?

27/9/05 13:52  
Blogger Todd said...

As with the creed, this has little hope of arriving without resistance unless it is set to music. And this new version isn't much more difficult to set than the old.

However, I would have preferred the full Gloria be retained only during the Christmas and Easter seasons. Other times of the year, and on seasonal weekdays (including Advent and Lent) it would've been good to have a simple doxology sung to complement and conclude the opening hymn or antiphon.

27/9/05 13:57  
Blogger Jeff said...


Sigh. This is a TRANSLATION. Take it up at the next revision of the Roman Rite.


"Reverting to the Pisteuomen/"We believe" of the original Greek text was nigh-on heretical."

Nothing heretical about it. But, as you put it, it's a 'reversion' not a translation. "Credo" means, "I believe." I guess we could take the "Filioque" out too on the grounds that that's not the way it is in the Greek either. Thank Goodness no one's suggesting that! Yet....

27/9/05 14:13  
Blogger Gotpraecht said...

Sorry, I was being ironic. I should have included the mandatory ;-)

It was just the billionth time I'd seen "We believe" presented as some kind of ghastly modernist mistranslation, forerunner of Antichrist and fons omnnium malorum ecclesiae huius saeculi.

27/9/05 14:22  
Blogger Ian said...

Are you being sarcastic Rocco? It is sometimes hard to tell. Although since you are almost orgastic about JPIIs liturgist, I am guessing you are serious about hating the new translation.

If you want to know how to sing the new version well, I echo the suggestion that you look to the Anglicans. If you just want to whine about having a translation that rises above the pedestrian, I guess you aren't going to be happy.

27/9/05 14:25  
Blogger Gotpraecht said...

P.S. If there's a special emoticon for hyperbole, let me know and I'll insert it into the previous post :-)

27/9/05 14:25  
Blogger Samoht415 said...

Please refer to 1984 People's Mass book, #253, for the "proposed translation" of the Gloria, set to music, which has a text and copyright from 1964...

I can tell you that there is a chapel within 50 miles of Philadelphia that has occasionally used this musical setting for the Gloria for the past 35 years!

27/9/05 14:38  
Blogger Ben said...

What has happened to the Church in the last 40 years to completely forget that Gregorian Chant is THE sacred music for the Roman rite. Other forms are exceptions to this. The closer the translation is to the latin, it seems it would be easier to chant it. I pray that more reverance will be given to Gregorian Chant in the future. And as far as "hating" the new translations... I think what you really hate is the text in Latin that the Church gives us. If you have real concerns on how to make it better and at the same time be true to the Latin then give your suggestions. But just to complain that they are too true to the Latin you must complain to the Pope and have him change the Latin for you.(When I say you I am talking to all those that are furious)

27/9/05 15:06  
Blogger John Hearn said...

I get to sing the *Latin* Gloria at the mass in MY parish, so nana nana naaaaaanaaaaaa!

But seriously, singing the Gloria in Latin just brings tears to my eyes - its just so beautiful! I wish we had the kind of great lyric poets now days that could do justice to that great prayer in English.

27/9/05 16:37  
Blogger Jon said...


Please don't leave us hanging. And I say that with respect.

Can you please answer the big one?

Do we have "for all," or "for the many?"

27/9/05 17:26  
Blogger Richard said...

Not to raise any hackles (although I know I will), but I wonder if all this couldn't be averted by leaving as many fixed parts in Latin as possible. (And use of chant where the meter is tricky. But then as Ben notes, chant is after all the sacred music for our rite - not that you would know it anymore).

I think Sacrosanctum Concilium had something to say on that score. Might also be advantageous in bilingual or multiilungual parishes. And there are more and more of those by the day.

27/9/05 19:11  
Blogger 4HisChurch said...

"...leaving as many fixed parts in Latin as possible."

AMEN to that!!!!

27/9/05 20:00  
Blogger Richard said...

...nor let it be thought I am a Latin fanatic.

Vernacular has a certain advantage: it is easily understood. Latin replaced Greek in the Roman rite in the 2nd century because, well, that's what most Romans spoke and understood.

So the Council had good reasons for wanting to make changes to make the liturgy more understandable by Catholics. Not everyone can be (alas) a Classics guru.

But it must also be said that in the old days one advantage of the liturgy was that you could go anywhere - Manila, Mexico City, Minneapolis, Milan, Munich - and feel at home with most of the mass. Everyone was on a level footing with all the non-vernacular parts of the mass.

With growing immigration and the rise of non-English masses and even parishes, we run the risk of real balkanization of the Church. The case of Fr. Weinberger in Dallas comes to mind: by doing at least one N.O. mass with the fixed parts in Latin, he was able to help bridge the gulf between his Anglo and hispanic parishioners, rather than have them completely segregate out into separrate masses.

Of course, we know what he got for all his trouble.

In the end, I don't see what would be wrong - indeed, fully consistent with the intentions and letter of SC - with having the Agnus Dei, Gloria, et al kept in Latin. They're not hard to learn or understand, especially if pew missals in translation are availablle. After a few hundred Sundays it will stick to your ribs.

28/9/05 09:33  
Blogger Mark Windsor said...

Actually, this is a very close translation from the original Latin. It's far closer, in fact, than the current version.

28/9/05 13:30  

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