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Issues at a glance


On July 28, the Vatican released a General Instruction for the revised third edition of the Roman Missal, which contains directives for celebrating Mass. They released it before the Roman Missal itself is ready. Simultaneously, the U.S. bishops’ Secretariat for the Liturgy released an in-house “study translation” (NCR, Aug. 25).

As the media picked up the study translation, a furor developed over several of its points, among them an item recommending that only ordained ministers wash the eucharistic vessels.

According to some attending the Oct. 3-7 Federation of the Diocesan Liturgical meeting in Costa Mesa, Calif., liturgical reactionaries, people who would turn back post-Vatican II (1962-65) liturgical reform, used the “study translation” -- which has no binding force -- to make their cases, in some instances forcefully, with their pastors or, if they are priests, with their congregations.

At an Oct. 3-7 meeting of the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions, Archbishop Oscar Lipscomb, chair of the Bishops’ Committee on the Liturgy, tried to calm anxieties while promising that federation members would have opportunities for input as bishops continue to discuss the new directives and their application in the United States.

National Catholic Reporter, October 20, 2000