Not my idea; the pastor’s. Did you catch the line in this morning’s preface?

Each year You give us this joyful season 
   when we prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery
   with mind and heart renewed.

One of our fourth grade classes was responsible for preparing the all-school liturgy today. When I met with them last week, it was an opportunity to hammer away at the three pillars–which they should know: it’s right there in Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18. The pastor obviously caught up with them, so he emphasized prayer, charity, and fasting, too. He mentioned the acronym JOY, and pointed out we use it during the Eucharistic Prayer today as an adjective for the season.

J = Jesus

O = others

Y = yourself

The point being that prayer helps us attend to our relationship with Jesus, charity guides us to concern for others, and fasting helps you attend to yourselves and your own need to trim down and take care of yourself.

It’s been a good start to Lent. What about yours?


About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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3 Responses to JOY

  1. pjsandstrom says:

    This Preface for Lent is one of the examples where the translators of the Latin seriously mistranslated. The Latin text (Quia fdelibus tuis dignanter concedis quotannis paschalia sacramenta in gaudio purificatis menitbus exspectare:. . .) — and the French — and most modern languages translated this as “Car chaque annee, tu accordes aux chretiens de se parparer aux fetes pascales dans le joie d’un coeur purifie” (For each year, you grant to Christians their preparation for the Pascal celebrations in the joy of a purified heart). The point is that it is not the Season itself that is ‘joyful’ but rather the results of the preparatory purification from sin before Easter — ‘turning ourselves around with the help of the Holy Trinity and the Church to where we were at our Baptism, Confirmation and First Communion. This is an entirely different emphasis — not therefore the ‘joy of the Season’ but the ‘joy of the results’.

  2. FrMichael says:

    Thanks pjs! I supposed that this was another ICEL shining moment but didn’t know the underlying Latin.

  3. Todd says:

    Before we go bashing ICEL, let’s state for the record yet again that an accurate translation wasn’t necessarily the intent of Roman Missal I. Sort of like criticizing Red Grange for not using the modern football helmet and opting for leather. It just wasn’t in the rules of the day. The ICEL of 1967-75 was given a substantially different charge than the ICEL of the 80’s or even today. If you want to blame someone, go to the curia of the 60’s and 70’s.

    If Lent is expressed as “joyful” it’s not necessarily a mistake because the Latin doesn’t say so. It’s no less a prayer, especially in the sense that tens of thousands of English-speaking priests prayed it aloud for millions of worshippers.

    The Latin doesn’t say a lot of things, and if vernaculars of the present and future have something better to say, I’m all for letting newer expressions of beauty and quality take their place aside the old.

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