The US bishops’ conference last week decreed that in the translation of the conclusion of collects in the Roman Missal, “one” is to be omitted before “God”. The conclusions will now read “God, for ever and ever”.
The decision follows a letter sent in May 2020 to Anglophone episcopal conferences by Robert Cardinal Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship, addressing a concern about the English translation.
A Feb. 4 note from the USCCB’s Committee on Divine Worship said the correction will take effect in the dioceses of the US from Feb. 17, Ash Wednesday.
Until now, in the conclusions to collects the Latin words “Deus, per omnia sæcula sæculorum” had been rendered in English as “one God, for ever and ever”.
The committee’s note said that Cardinal Sarah had observed that “there is no mention of ‘one’ in the Latin, and ‘Deus’ in the Latin text refers to Christ … The Cardinal Prefect has pointed out the importance of affirming this Christological truth amid the religious pluralism of today’s world.”
The note added that English hand missals that preceded Vatican II “reflected the corrected translation … however, when the post-conciliar texts were published in English, the word ‘one’ was added.”
The English-Latin Sacramentary, a missal published in 1966 during the period of transition from the Traditional Latin Mass to the Novus Ordo, omitted the word ‘one’ in the conclusion of collects. The English translation found in The English-Latin Sacramentary was copyrighted by P. J. Kennedy & Sons, and had been approved by the National Conference of Bishops Sept. 3, 1965.
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