New Words for Worship Part 17: Pentecost Prayers Present and Future

Pentecost Prayers Present and Future
Today’s column shows the texts for Mass during the day on the Solemnity of Pentecost that we will hear for the last time this year together with those in the revised English language Missal which will be used in future.
Current Opening Prayer:
God our Father,
let the Spirit you sent on your Church
to begin the teaching of the gospel
continue to work in the world
through the hearts of all who believe.

Revised Collect:
O God, who by the mystery of today’s great feast
sanctify your whole Church in every people and nation,
pour out, we pray, the gifts of the Holy Spirit
across the face of the earth
and, with the divine grace that was at work
when the Gospel was first proclaimed,
fill now once more the hearts of believers.

The degree to which ICEL simplified longer and more complex texts in the 1973 translation is evident here where the revised version is almost twice the length of the present one.
Current Prayer over the Gifts:
may the Spirit you promised
lead us into all truth
and reveal to us the full meaning of this sacrifice.
Revised Prayer over the Offerings:
Grant, we pray, O Lord,
that, as promised by your Son,
the Holy Spirit may reveal to us more abundantly
the hidden mystery of this sacrifice
and graciously lead us into all truth.

This is a good example of the more deferential language used towards God in the revised translation, with “grant, we pray, O Lord” replacing the more direct “Lord”.

Current Preface of pentecost:
Today you sent the Holy Spirit
on those marked out to be your children
by sharing the life of your only Son,
and so you brought the paschal mystery to its completion.
Today we celebrate the great beginning of your Church
when the Holy Spirit made known to all peoples the one true God,
and created from the many languages of man
one voice to profess one faith.
Revised Preface of The Mystery of Pentecost:
For bringing your paschal mystery to completion,
you bestowed the Holy Spirit today
on those you made your adopted children
by uniting them to your Only Begotten Son.
This same Spirit, as the Church came to birth,
opened to all peoples the knowledge of God
and brought together the many languages of the earth
in profession of the one faith.

The revised Preface is not as readily comprehensible as the current one because of its complex structure, including the insertion of the phrase “as the Church came to birth” between the subject “Spirit” and its verb “opened”.


Elizabeth Harrington