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New Missal not ready for Spanish-language Masses

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Gladys Rodriguez distributes Communion during a Spanish-language Mass at Transfiguration Church in the Brooklyn, N.Y., Feb. 3. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

WASHINGTON -- Although the third edition of the Roman Missal will become standard at English-language Masses in the United States beginning in Advent 2011, those participating in Spanish-language Masses here will have to wait a little longer for a new translation.

While the Vatican has given its "recognitio," or confirmation, to the English translation that will be used in the United States, the Mexican bishops' conference is still awaiting approval of its translation of the Latin text of the missal, said Father Richard Hilgartner, associate director of the U.S. bishops' Secretariat on Divine Worship.

Once the Mexican text receives approval, the U.S. bishops "plan to take a good look" at it and might publish a Spanish-language edition of the Roman Missal for the United States based on that translation, although no final decision has been made, he said. But the Mexican bishops are about two years behind the United States in the translation and approval process, Father Hilgartner added.

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Even after the new Spanish-language text comes into use, most Catholics attending U.S. Masses in Spanish will not hear any many differences in wording as English-speaking Catholics will. That's because the Spanish missal translations currently in use do not diverge as sharply from the original Latin as some English translations did.

Stories in this series on the new Roman Missal:

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