Showing posts with label Bishop Vasa. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bishop Vasa. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Bishop Vasa: The New Missal Translation and his Catechism Class

National Catholic Register
Daily News
The New Missal Translation: Renewing Awe and Wonder
Bishop Vasa explains how it will help the Church grow in faith.
Bishop Robert Vasa is the bishop of Santa Rosa, Calif. Like all bishops throughout the country, he is planning to implement the new English translation of the Mass on the First Sunday of Advent.
Papal Pose? He doesn't even know it.
Liturgy, the prayer of the Church, reveals our faith and our life. Liturgy is that timeless place in time where man encounters God in a communion of love. How we pray forms the foundation for how we believe. Bishop Vasa spoke about what the Church is trying to show us with the new translation of the Roman Missal. What is liturgy? The liturgy is the work of Jesus. It is the work of God in our midst. There has been a great emphasis since the 1960s on what we are doing for God as opposed to what Christ is doing for us. Liturgy lifts up the mind and heart to God; it puts us in contact with Jesus’ saving works and deeds. Liturgy takes us out of where we are and lifts us up into that place where we are not yet. And what do these changes in liturgical language tell us? When we study the language in the new translation, we see that it consistently shifts us into an acknowledgement of the otherness of God, the God who is not us. It emphasizes the centrality of God and his grace, as opposed to the anthropocentric, man-centered approach, where we make it so much about us and what we’re doing. The elevation of language — the increased richness of the language — tells us this is not an ordinary, daily, routine event. There’s a lot of fear about this new translation. I would say this: In terms of the laity, there is precious little cause for any concern or anxiety because everything that affects the laity directly is found on one two-sided, 8½- by-11-inch sheet. Now, the priest has about a thousand pages of text that is absolutely brand-new to him. It will be important for the priest to take a few moments before Mass to sit down and study the texts to make sure that there’s not some twist in the language that’s going to cause him to stumble. Some people say the new Gloria is too complicated. Well, most people have to pick up the Gloria and read it anyway. Most of the Glorias we have sung in the Church in the last 20 years have been some sort of artistic rendition of the Gloria. To have a new standard translation and a mandate that this translation is to be used exclusively in written and in sung versions will actually make the “Glory to God” less complicated, because it’s going to insist on this translation and not something “equivalent to it,” especially when sung. When we study the language in the new translation, what should we be looking for? The new translation affords us an opportunity to look at the words in the Mass and ask, “How and why is this different?” I think if people do this, they will find that the new translation offers a great opportunity for deeper prayer and reflection. Sometimes that new translation will challenge our accustomed thought and behavior patterns and hopefully lead us to a deeper intimacy with Christ. You said the new translation also restores some of the scriptural references, which were lost. One very striking example for me is just after the “Lamb of God,” before we receive Communion, the priest holds up the Host and says, “This is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Happy are those who are called to his supper.” I have always been moderately chagrined by the use here of the word “happy.” Somehow, just being “happy” about being called to the divine banquet of the Lord seems inadequate. For 40 years, we have been told that we should be happy to come to the Lord. Many words such as “overwhelmed,” “blessed,” “honored,” “humbled,” “ecstatic” or even “overjoyed,” in my opinion, get closer to describing the graced beauty of that to which we are called and our interior response, but what we have heard is “happy.” The new translation says “Blessed are those called to the Supper of the Lamb.” Not just to a communal meal, but the supper of the Lamb: It’s the Last Supper, but it’s also this eternal supper, this eternal liturgy, coming into the presence of God. Then, our current response is: “Lord, I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word, and I shall be healed.” Fine. But we lose the Scripture connotation. I’ve asked kids as well as a number of adults, “Where is that found in Scripture?” And they do not know because the words denoting the scriptural context are absent. The Latin clearly states, “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof.” Now, who said that in Scripture? The Centurion. The full response in the new translation is: “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word, and my soul shall be healed.” As opposed to simply “and I shall be healed.” Yes, it’s a different emphasis on who you are as a person. This is not just for the health of your body. This is not so you can go away from here feeling good. This is for your spiritual enrichment. The changes are small, but little words make a significant difference. That’s just one small example of a richening of the translation and a strengthening of that connection with Scripture. What do you hope the ultimate effect of these liturgical changes will be within the Church? That we re-establish a sense of liturgy as that moment of encounter with God, of coming into the presence of the truly sacred and truly holy. In the liturgy for confirmation, the last phrase of the bishop’s prayer over the candidates is: “Fill them with the Spirit of wonder and awe in your presence.” When was the last time you came to Sunday Mass and came away saying, “I have been filled with the Spirit of wonder and awe”? We literally cannot say that, because it hasn’t been our experience. Somehow our liturgies have to reclaim that. We need to approach liturgy with the sense of reverence that inculcates within us a deep sense of prayerfulness, worship and tranquility, a sense of the presence of God. I believe the new translation moves us a little closer to this needed sense of reverence.
Register correspondent Sue Ellen Browder writes from Ukiah, California.
NB There are some that don't understand or want to understand the changes. Vatican II has been misrepresented to them and by them. We have a wonderful gift to all be on the same page. Here is a solid catechesis opportunity from Bishop Vasa and other outstanding Catholics we can trust. What could be better? Order Catechism Classes from Bishop Vasa......Christmas gifts? Belonging because of simple ignorance can be changed by leaving. To learn and remain is "invincible ignorance." Bishop Robert Vasa

Friday, October 7, 2005

Bishop Vasa says 'No' to "Safe Environment Programs" part one

Dear All, For those families still suffering because of the "safe environment" programs that they feel abuse their childrens innocence, here is some wonderful news for you. Bishop Robert Vasa from the Diocese of Baker is putting the children of the Baker Diocese under his protection. He is respecting the parents and their concerns regarding their own children. He is respecting the Church and Her Teachings and he is following in the footsteps of the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ. Who laid His life down for His Sheep and His little lambs.
Bishop Robert F. Vasa
Let us pray that other Bishops will ask questions of these programs so that our children will never again be subjected to abuse from the very people that are to protect them Here are his words and here is what he is concerned about. Thank God for this good Shepherd. To make sure we really protect children, we need answers 10/06/2005 Bishop Robert Vasa BEND — The next topic is one that I bring up only with great reluctance for I do not want to give any appearance whatsoever of being soft on my desire to assure the complete safety and protection of children. The Charter for the Protection of Children has been interpreted to include mandatory “safe-environment training” for all children of or connected with the Church. In the diocese, we have indicated that such training must be made available to all children under our supervision in our Catholic schools but have not taken on the nearly impossible task of assuming responsibility for every child in the diocese.
As a result of this discrepancy between a new interpretation of the charter and our diocesan policy, the annual charter audit will undoubtedly find the Diocese of Baker, and me as bishop, “Not in Compliance” and will issue a “Required Action,” which I am prepared, at this point, to ignore. I say this not because I resist efforts to protect children, but rather precisely the opposite. There are a series of questions that I believe need to be answered before I could mandate such a diocesan-wide program of “safe-environment training.” A few such questions follow: Are such programs effective? Do such programs impose an unduly burdensome responsibility on very young children to protect themselves rather than insisting that parents take such training and take on the primary responsibility for protecting their children? Where do these programs come from? Is it true that Planned Parenthood has a hand or at least huge influence on many of them? Is it true that other groups, actively promoting early sexual activity for children, promote these programs in association with their own perverse agendas? Do such programs involve, even tangentially, the sexualization of children, which is precisely a part of the societal evil we are striving to combat? Does such a program invade the Church-guaranteed-right of parents over the education of their children in sexual matters? Do I have the right to mandate such programs and demand that parents sign a document proving that they choose to exercise their right not to have their child involved? Do such programs introduce children to sex-related issues at age-inappropriate times? Would such programs generate a fruitful spiritual harvest? Would unsatisfactory answers to any of the questions above give sufficient reason to resist such programs? There are many concerned parents who have indicated to me that the answers to all of these questions are unsatisfactory. If this is true, do these multiple problematic answers provide sufficient reason to resist the charter interpretation? At very least, even the possible unsatisfactory answers to any of the questions above leaves me unwilling and possibly even unable to expose the children of the diocese to harm under the guise of trying to protect them from harm. I pray that, in this, I am neither wrong-headed nor wrong. For holding to this conviction I and the diocese may be declared negligent, weighed and found wanting. (continued)