Archive | 12:45 am

Biblical Walk Through the Mass

3 Nov

The CUF Blog is publishing a weekly series by Dr. Edward Sri on the new translation of the Roman Missal as we lead up to its implementation this coming Advent. The most recent post is entitled,  “Your Moment in the Mass: ‘Through My Most Grievous Fault’ and ‘Only Begotten Son.’

Dr. Sri, a former professor of theology at Benedictine College in Atchison, now serves as professor and provost at the Augustine Institute in Denver.

In his clear, accessible style, Dr. Sri explains the change to “Only-Begotten Son” in the Gloria:

“The opening words of the Gloria echo the hymns of praise sung by the angels over the fields of Bethlehem on that first Christmas night: ‘Glory to God in the highest . . . ‘ So the Gloria is somewhat like a Christmas song. Why do we sing a Christmas song at Mass? Because the mystery of Christmas is, in a sense, made present at every Eucharist. Just as the Son of God was made manifest to the world some 2,000 years ago, so He is made present sacramentally on our altars at the consecration at every Mass. Thus, it is fitting to welcome Jesus with words of praise that echo how the angels heralded Christ’s coming in Bethlehem.

“One noticeable change in the new translation of the Gloria involves Jesus being addressed as the ‘Only-Begotten Son.’ We had been saying that Jesus was the ‘only Son of the Father,’ but the new translation more closely follows the theological language used in the early Church to highlight how Jesus is uniquely God’s Son, sharing in the same divine nature as the Father. This also reflects the biblical language in John’s gospel, which uses similar wording to describe Jesus’ singular relationship with the Father. While all believers are called to a special relationship with God as His sons and daughters through grace (see John 1: 12; 1 John 3:1), Jesus alone is the eternal, divine Son by nature. He is the ‘only-begotten Son’ of the Father (see John 1:14, 18; 3:16, 18).”

Dr. Sri will be giving a presentation based on his best-selling book,  A Biblical Walk Through the Mass: Understanding What We Say and Do in the Liturgy, this coming Saturday across the state line at St. Therese parish in Kansas City, Missouri. For more information, click here.