I was expecting something like this:
I was expecting a train wreck. I was expecting protests in the streets. I was expecting SOMETHING dramatic but it seems that the parish made an honest go of it and the whole thing came off pretty much without a hitch. So much for excitement (for which I am very grateful.)
There is a prayer that a priest can traditionally say before celebrating Mass. It goes thusly, “Priest of God, say this Mass as though it were you first Mass, as though it were your last Mass, as though it were your only Mass.” Even though we practiced, praying this Mass pretty much felt as though it were my first Mass. I was nervous, my nose stuck to the book, and slightly unsure of myself.
Most of the parts that changed belonged to the priest. Often is was like having driven the same way to work for 10 years and then one day going somewhere else and it feeling like the car was fighting you to go to your usual place of employment. The cadences and flow were off. It meant staying more alert than usual, reading ahead, analyzing, and keeping the ship on course.
By and large it went fine except for the blessing of the deacon before the Gospel. I had typed up a cheat sheet and kept it next to my chair for his new blessing. When it came time for the it I could not find it. “You’ll have to make do with an approximate blessing,” I told him when he came over for his blessing.
In the end it went much more smoothly than I expected. The reaction of people leaving was interesting. There were a few who said they weren’t exactly happy but that they would be good soldiers. There were a number of people who liked it for various reasons. Those who came to our parish from other nations said that they were very happy with the translations because it is what they were used to in their home countries. It turns out there a more people in the parish who studied Latin than I would have guessed and they were happy with it as well as those who remember their old missals for the new translation is pretty close to that old translation.
As odd as it may sound, it did not really occur to me that this is the translation that we would be using every day now. I was so focused on this weekend that I never really thought past to Monday and forever. Tomorrow will be another Eucharistic prayer and another go at it.
I can’t wait.