The First Sunday in Advent is foundational for the liturgical year.  Roman Catholics will begin using the 2011 Missal November 27.  That Missal is illiterate[1] in that it shows lack of familiarity with standard American English and literature.  The Missal lacks credibility and accountability.  The Missal provides the prayers used at Masses.  Prayers are the means the faithful use to reach the Messiah in the Christian context.

No one expected the Messiah to be born in a barn.  No one expected the Missal to be born out of Italian grammar, but that is the way it seems to be.  Americans in the United States expected standard American English (SAE)[2] grammar. 

Naval-gazing is all that is left when prayer is reduced to an incoherent mantra of nonsense.  These Notes are trying to show how to use the Missal to pray without naval-gazing.  Jesus, God becoming human, is the Christmas hope for the mess in which the Faithful find themselves.

Roman Catholics believe that the Pope is the Vicar of Christ.  Catholics think the Pope capable of infallibility.  That sense of the sacred, however, has limits—because of a lack of due diligence—which the (1) Protestant Revolt, (2) the sexual coverup scandal, and (3) the 2011 illiterate Missal continue to define.  The Church is in denial that there is a problem.  As a result, there is no voluntary accountability to anybody.

As in these three examples, sometimes the Papacy proves incapable of judging its own case.  Then, the Papacy needs help, coping with its own resulting tyranny.  Trying to help is the spirit of these Personal Notes.  Goggling “misguided missal” results in “about 1,180,000 results in 0.23 seconds.”[3] 

This is the first opportunity for the Faithful to vet the Missal.  The Missal treats SAE as a second-class language.  My fundamental concern is appropriateness for the Faithful, especially Black Catholics, who know what it is to be second-class, particularly when having to struggle with the canons of SAE.  In the United States, everyone studies English, at least through the second year of college.

The Collect (prayer) in the 2011 illiterate Missal[4] consists of a run-on sentence followed by a sentence fragment.  When the Faithful are trying to pray, nonsense is not appropriate for the sacred liturgy from the altar:

 

Grant your faithful, we pray, almighty God, the resolve to run forth to meet your Christ with righteous deeds at his coming, so that, gathered at his right hand, they may be worthy to possess the heavenly Kingdom.  [This is a fused sentence, fusing we pray with may be worthy.][5]  [Whatever it is that may be] Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever [forever is one word in SAE] and ever.  [Through . . . is a dangling modifier beyond the pale of exemplification in The Little, Brown Handbook.][6]

 

Grant . . . the resolve to run forth to meet . . . so that . . . they may be worthy.  Are the Faithful to understand this garbled syntax?  Also note the prayer contains the resolve to run . . . gathered at his right hand.  The bishops know better.  The Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments rejected the various sections of the Roman Missal canonically approved for use by the USCCB on June 15, 2006, November 11, 2008, and July 17, 2009. 

 

The USCCB finally caved in and gave up, November 17, 2009.[7]  Despite USCCB approval, non-SAE grammar is no way to treat the English language in sacred prayer.  This is Vatican tyranny against Catholics living in the United States of America.

Since these Notes reach out into broader Christian communities, it makes sense to recognize outstanding mainstream Protestants.  Protestants have led the way to bring vernacular language into the sacred liturgy.  Centuries ago, John Calvin (1509-1564) in the context of recognizing churches, wrote, “But when we recognize societies full of faults as churches of Christ, we must at the same time condemn what is wrong with them,”[8] such as illiterate vernacular language unworthy of God. 

Another group, Baptists, also constitute a large proportion of Christians in Hampton Roads.  The Urban Ministries Annual Sunday School Lesson Commentary, relates, “The kingdom of God resides in us!” [9]  This means that the Faithful can rest assured that God “can be trusted to take care of our needs.”  The Faithful expect as much in the liturgy.

The Responsorial Antiphon for this Sunday, “Lord, make us turn to you; let us see your face and we shall be saved” becomes a prayer to see through the illiterate nonsense in the 2011 Missal toward an intense love of God.  As the Commentary notes, “Very little affects our faith and trust in the Lord more than anxiety and worry.”  The Holy Spirit, the Advocate, perfects prayer to present to the Father—a type of heavenly Christmas gift for the Faithful.

1 Corinthians 1:7, also read this Sunday, reassures the Faithful, you are not lacking in any spiritual gift.  The Faithful can readily associate a gift from God with the meaning of Christmas.  The Gospel picks up the expectation of little children anticipating Christmas gifts and Santa Claus:  What I say to you, I say to all:  `Watch!’  Christmas means hope despite the difficulties of the day.

 

Reading 002B for the First Sunday in Advent

November 27, 2011

First Reading:                   Isaiah 63:16b-17, 19b; 64:2-7

Responsorial Psalm:          Psalm 80:2-3, 15-16, 18-19 (4)

Second Reading:              1 Corinthians 1:3-9

Alleluia:                             Psalm 85:8

Gospel:                             Mark 13:33-37

 

 

Annotated Bibliography

Musings above the solid line draw from material below the line.  Those uninterested in scholarly and tangential details should stop reading here.  If they do, however, they may miss some interesting details.

 

Isaiah 63:16b-17, 19b; 64:2-7

Meaning changes significantly between the Lectionary and NABRE.

Verse  Lectionary                                    NABRE[10]

16       … forever …                                … from of old …

  3      … from of old …                          … from of old …

It appears that the Lectionary cannot make up its mind between forever, and from of old.  There is a significant difference in meaning between the two translations.

 

  5      … like polluted rags …                … like something unclean …

          The NABRE is discrete.  The reference is to menstrual rags.

5 and 6  … guilt …                                 … crimes …

          Guilt and crimes are significantly different.      

 

Isaiah 63:17

Reed Lessing, review of Bo H. Lim, The “Way of the Lord” in the Book of Isaiah[11]

The focus here is on Why do you let us wander, O Lord, from your ways.  Lessing praises Lim for tracking the development of the way of the Lord from Isaiah into the New Testament.

 

Psalm 80:2-3, 15-16, 18-19 (4)

Guilt reflects itself in Psalm 80, a form of the Blues.[12]  Pastoral Care of the Sick uses Psalm 80 in two places.[13] 

 

Meaning changes significantly between the Lectionary and NABRE

Verse  Lectionary                                    NABRE

15                                                          … turn back again …

I see nothing like turn back again in the Lectionary.

 

16       … made strong …                       … made strong for yourself.

The Lectionary omits the purpose of the strength.

 

What the Lectionary labels verse 2 is verse 2a and 2c; verse 3 is verse 3b and 3c.  Sloppy scholarship.

 

1 Corinthians 1:3-9

 

Psalm 85:8

Meaning changes significantly between the new Missal, Lectionary, and NABRE

Verse 8

Missal           Let us see, O LORD, your mercy, and grant us your salvation.[14]

Lectionary     Show us Lord, your love; and grant us your salvation.

NABRE         Show us, LORD, your mercy; grant us your salvation.

          Love and mercy are poor equivalents.  The difference between LORD and Lord is that LORD refers to the name, Yahweh, and Lord to a title.

 

Mark 13:33-37

Mark 13:3-37

C. Clifton Black, “Mark as Historian of God’s Kingdom”[15]

C. Clifton Black argues about the historicity of the intersection between God’s Kingdom and human kingdom.  C. Clifton Black argues that the Kingdom of God is so amorphous it cannot be subjected to historical scrutiny.  That amorphism is what Mark proclaims in his Gospel, for you do not know when the lord of the house is coming.

 

Mark 11:1-13:37

Elizabeth Struthers Malbon, review of Brendan Byrne, S.J., A Costly Freedom: A Theological Reading of Mark’s Gospel[16]

Malbon reports that Byrne presents these verses as part of the fifth of eight sections to Mark, the section of The Messiah in Jerusalem.  This is a book appropriate for preachers and church-related, especially Catholic, colleges, “but the theological perspective would preclude the book’s appropriate use in state universities.”  I am not sure what Malbon means by that, perhaps that the book is loaded with pious pabulum.

 

 

For my background and more on sources see the Appendix file.  Personal Notes are on the web site at www.western-civilization.com/CBQ/Personal%20Notes.



[2] H. Ramsey Fowler and Jane E. Aaron, Eleventh Edition:  The Little, Brown Handbook (New York:  Longman, 2010) xii.

 

[4] n.a., The Roman Missal:  Renewed by Decree of the Most Holy Second Ecumenical Council of the Vatican, Promulgated by Authority of Pope Paul VI and Revised at the Direction of Pope John Paul II:  English Translation According to the Third Typical Edition:  For Use in the Dioceses of the United States of America:  Approved by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and Confirmed by the Apostolic See (Washington, DC, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2011) 182, 183.

 

[5] H. Ramsey Fowler and Jane E. Aaron, Eleventh Edition:  The Little, Brown Handbook (New York:  Longman, 2010) 339-344.

 

[6] H. Ramsey Fowler and Jane E. Aaron, Eleventh Edition:  The Little, Brown Handbook (New York:  Longman, 2010) 330-337, 891.

 

[7] Antonio Card. Canizares Llovera, “Congregation for Divine worship and Discipline of the Sacraments,” and Francis Card. George, O.M.I., “United States conference of Catholic Bishops,” Roman Missal:  Renewed by Decree of the Most Holy Second Ecumenical Council of the Vatican, Promulgated by Authority of Pope Paul VI and Revised at the Direction of Pope John Paul II:  English Translation According to the Third Typical Edition:  For Use in the Dioceses of the United States of America:  Approved by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and Confirmed by the Apostolic See (Washington, DC, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2011) unnumbered pages 8 and 9.

 

[8] John Calvin, “Commentary on Galatians,” in Reformation Commentary on Scripture:  New Testament X: Galatians, Ephesians, (ed.) Gerald L. Bray.

Downers Grove, Illinois:  IVP Academic, An Imprint of InterVarsity Press, 2011, 14.

 

[9] UMI Annual Commentary:  Precepts for Living, Vincent E. Bacote, Ph.D., (ed.) (Chicago, IL  60643: UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.), 2011) 149, 150, 153.

 

[10] Saint Joseph Edition of The New American Bible:  Revised Edition (New Jersey:  Catholic Book Publishing Corp., 2011).

 

[11] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 73, No. 1 (January 2011) 124.

 

[12] Wilma Ann Bailey, “The Sorrow Songs: Laments from Ancient Israel and the African American Diaspora,” in Yet with a Steady Beat: Contemporary U.S. Afrocentric Biblical Interpretation, Randall C. Bailey, ed., (Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2003) 64.

 

[13] The Roman Ritual: Revised by Decree of the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council and Published by Authority of Pope Paul VI: Pastoral Care of the Sick: Rites of Anointing and Viaticum: Approved for use in the dioceses of the United States of America by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops and Confirmed by the Apostolic See: Prepared by International Commission on English in the Liturgy: a Joint Commission of Catholic Bishops’ Conferences (New York: Catholic Book Publishing Co. 1983) 172, 283.

 

[14] The hierarchy is kept the 2011 Illiterate Missal a secret until October.  I began to prepare this in August.  Certain documentation had to wait publication.  In the meantime, my course had to be an unrecorded place on the internet, whose reliability I was not able to check.

 

[15] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 71, No. 1 (January 2009) 81.

 

[16] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 71, No. 3 (July 2009) 639.