Friday, August 20, 2010

St. Raymond of Penyafort (c.1175 to Jan. 6, 1275)

I was a baby when the Roman Catholic Mass was in Latin, so I'm definitely mystified by the excitement surrounding today's announcement that the use of an English translation of the Roman Missal will begin on the first Sunday of Advent 2011.
It means that the language will reflect the distinction that the priest is celebrating Mass in the person of Jesus Christ. So, for example, the response to "The Lord be with you" will change from "And also with you" to "And with your spirit."
The Catholic News Service said that the order and the structure of the Mass will stay the same. And, much to my excitement, there will be new observances to the saints that were added to the liturgical calendar in the past couple of decades.
I don't go to church, so the new language certainly will not affect me. However, it's making me quite curious. And, who knows? When the changes finally come around, it might be a good time to start.
Apparently experts in canon law, liturgy, and scripture have pooled their knowledge.
Bishop Thomas J. Tobin of Providence said that, yes, it will be a lot of work to learn new responses and prayers, but if it helps people to think about what they're saying, grow spiritually, appreciate the Eucharist, and worship in spirit and truth, then it's worth the effort.
Today is the perfect time to remember St. Raymond of Penyafort (Penafort), the patron saint of canonists. He was born in Catalonia, Spain c.1175. He studied in his native country and at the University of Bologna in Italy, earning doctorates in civil and canon law.
St. Raymond of Penyafort had a deep love for Mary the Mother of God and helped found the Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy.
He was a Dominican priest and died on Jan. 6, 1275. Canonized: 1601. St. Raymond of Penyafort's feast day is Jan. 7.

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