About this blogger:
A theorist, organist, and conductor, Jeff Ostrowski holds his B.M. in Music Theory from the University of Kansas (2004), and did graduate work in Musicology. He serves as choirmaster for the new FSSP parish in Los Angeles, where he resides with his wife and children.
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“The free space which the new order of Mass gives to creativity it must be admitted, is often excessively enlarged. The difference between the liturgy with the new liturgical books, as it is actually practiced and celebrated in various places is often much greater than the difference between the old and new liturgies when celebrated according to the rubrics of the liturgical books.”
— Cardinal Ratzinger (1998)

Gregorian Missal With The New Translation!
published 26 June 2013 by Jeff Ostrowski

HE NEW Gregorian Missal, printed by Solesmes in 2012, is truly thrilling. I’ve never seen a book with nicer printing of the chant: crisp, clear, beautiful.

That being said, I do have a few minor questions about the Foreword. Let me review some items, then I will ask my question. For anyone not aware, Solesmes has gone through the entire book and replaced the old (discredited) ICEL translation with the 2011 (more accurate) translation, as required by Church law, but they could not do this for the Mass Propers, since no official translation exists. However, there does exist an official translation of the Spoken Propers (i.e. Introit and Communion antiphons). Therefore, Solesmes carefully went through, replacing the Introits and Communions in any instances where the Spoken Propers correspond to the Sung Propers.

Another way to put this would be: the Mass Propers in this new publication correspond to the (previous) Solesmes translation, with the exception of any Introit/Communion antiphons which match the Spoken Propers. In those instances, they have substituted the new (2011) translations.

HOWEVER, THERE APPEARS to be some confusion in the book’s Foreword:

It is useful both for choirs and for the people in general, since the proper chants of the Gregorian repertory, as presented in the post-Vatican II edition of the Roman Gradual approved by Paul VI, do not, as a rule, correspond to the song texts proposed in the present-day Roman Missal.

This is puzzling. The Roman Missal does not (and has never) proposed any “song texts.” It merely contains texts for the Entrance and Communion which the priest reads if there is no music, as has been explained. The Foreword continues:

The notated Gregorian chant pieces proper to each Mass, are generally followed by our own translation, printed across the full width of the page. Its only function is to facilitate comprehension of the sung Latin text, and it is in no way intended for use in the liturgy.

This, too, is rather puzzling. As I have mentioned, many times for the Introit and Communion, they have employed the new 2011 ICEL translation, which is intended for use in the liturgy at “spoken Masses” (i.e. “Masses without music” as Pope Paul VI said).

Whence cometh this confusion? My personal guess would be that they simply left the Foreword exactly as it appeared in the 1990 edition.

IN CONCLUSION, AS MANY CLERICS (such as Msgr. Schuler and Cardinal Burke) have already noted, what a relief it is to finally have accurate translations for the Mass prayers! To make this possible, the Solesmes monks had to add many pages, as can be observed by comparing the discredited translation to “MR3” (Roman Missal, Third Edition):