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Re: Feminism and the English Language
ajk #281046 03/02/08 04:50 PM
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Erratum: In my previous post "forth" should be "fourth."

Father John,

I would like to expand more on my previous questions if I may. Although I did not want to impose on you too much about my questions, I have not had the occasion to interact lately with someone who has "studied Greek as long or as in as much depth as I have" as you have said of yourself.

So, within that context, as someone with credentials as you have indicated, how would the Greek of the Creed simply say for us and for... as in the RDL rather than for us men and for ...

Here is the pertinent excerpt with emphasis:

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Τόν δι’ ημάς τούς ανθρώπους καί διά τήν ημετέραν σωτηρίαν κατελθόντα εκ τών ουρανών καί σαρκωθέντα εκ Πνεύματος ‘Αγίου καί Μαρίας τής Παρθένου καί ενανθρωπήσαντα.


That is, WRT grammar and syntax, what is wrong with:

Quote
Τόν δι’ ημάς ______________ καί διά τήν ημετέραν σωτηρίαν κατελθόντα εκ τών ουρανών καί σαρκωθέντα εκ Πνεύματος ‘Αγίου καί Μαρίας τής Παρθένου καί ενανθρωπήσαντα.


How else would one say it -- i.e. for us and for... -- in the Greek of the Creed?

Though this is addressed to Fr. John, I invite all to respond with contributions, even if they lack academic credentials.

Dn. Anthony

Re: Feminism and the English Language
ajk #281058 03/02/08 06:39 PM
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Dn. Anthony, I must admit that I still do not understand what you are asking. (I have a feeling it is because your questions presuppose a certain answer.)

Anyway, I think what you are asking me about the translation. I have already written that the translation "for us human beings ... became a human being" would be an acceptable translation -- both linguistically and theologically. The point of the Creed is to affirm Christ's full humanity not his maleness. Although, as I have written, his maleness is the way in which he united himself with our humanity, thus it is also appropriate theologically to say "and became man" -- although it is not as precise linguistically (in my opinion).

I must also say on a personal level that I find your thinly veiled sarcasm to be a bit wearing psychologically. I would prefer it if you did not continue to exercise this argumentative ploy as it does not aid the discussion and certainly does not help to create a positive environment. My comments were not meant to put any person down or to insinuate that I know better than others. The reality is that I have been blessed to have taken three years of advanced graduate study in koine Greek from some of the better Greek scholars in the field of New Testament studies. This study has given me insights into the way in which Greek functions that are difficult to explain to people who have not been blessed with these educational opportunities.

Re: Feminism and the English Language
PrJ #281063 03/02/08 08:27 PM
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This study has given me insights into the way in which Greek functions that are difficult to explain to people who have not been blessed with these educational opportunities


This is the argument of "the sophisticated experts" know better. Now we must, therefore, fault the entire Roman Church (Bishop Trautman excepted) in the United States for its failure to drop men from the Creed. And indeed we must fault the Holy See itself for all of its arguments in Liturgiam Authenticam for its failure to understand the English language as used in America and the effects that the word "men" has on the modern American. Are there any other disagreements that the Byzantine experts have with Rome? My experience with a Roman priest (a canon lawyer and former President of the canon law society) who refused to use "men" in the Creed was that he also rejected Rome's teaching as set forth in Humanae Vitae. Is this the case with our experts as well?

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Precisely my point: when Lincoln said "all men" everyone understood "all human beings." Today when people say "all men" most of the young people understand "all males." Therefore, what they hear you saying is theologically incorrect. We CANNOT re-educate all of the students in America. What we can do is communicate to them in a language they understand. Hence the need for the RDL.

It seems very simple to me -- you can moan and groan and complain all you want about how young people today are being poorly educated, about how the language is degenerating, etc.

But you are still faced with a choice -- stick to your antiquated way of speaking and lose the chance to communicate with the young people OR change the way you talk to communicate effectively.

I choose the later.


And in choosing the latter you pervert the Creed in order to communicate its truth. What young people receive is not then the faith which the martyrs died for, but something that can accomodate their modern tastes and sensibilities. And they will also learn, when they find out what has been done to the Creed, that it is perfectly acceptable to change the faith when you might be persecuted for maintaining it in its entirety. The early martyrs who refused that pinch of incense to the pagan gods are then seen as fools and not witnesses to the faith.

And by the way, what experts in language were engaged by the Bishops and the Liturgical Commission to find out how young people understand the English language? Or in this situation did the Commission rely upon "common knowledge?" I can tell you since I know one of the Commission members. There were no experts--it came to a vote by the Commission. As far as approval by the Oriental Congregation, that came from Fr. Taft - he was the Commission who approved the RDL and thereby the new Creed---or so he said to a friend of mine. Fr. Taft of course is no expert in the use of English and its development in modern America and neither are you.

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Anyway, I think what you are asking me about the translation. I have already written that the translation "for us human beings ... became a human being" would be an acceptable translation -- both linguistically and theologically. The point of the Creed is to affirm Christ's full humanity not his maleness. Although, as I have written, his maleness is the way in which he united himself with our humanity, thus it is also appropriate theologically to say "and became man" -- although it is not as precise linguistically (in my opinion).


Here again we rely upon your "expert" opinion. But this again is a lack of true theological inquiry which receives the faith as it is handed on, and then seeks to understand that faith. Instead, you defend changing the Creed (sophistically calling it a translation) to suit modern sensibilities. But according to modern sensibilities in America, even amongst many of those who profess the Catholic faith---abortion, euthanasia and contraception are compatible with the faith.

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And, yes, I believe that this is the intent of the Creed at this point. The Creed is not affirming Christ's maleness at this point; if that was the intent, another Greek word would have been used.



Again, if you had faith seeking understanding, you would ask why anthropos and not aner? Because anthropos has several meanings. It can me man (which includes all mankind--men, women and children), or it can mean a male as it does in that phrase from Ephesians:

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"For this reason a man [anthropos] shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh." 32 This mystery is a profound one, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church;


By the mistranslation --- for us human beings...he became a human being, the meaning in Ephesians is lost.

PS - I pulled out my Liddel and Scott Greek dictionary and looked up anthropos and it states, "man--opposed to gods"!

For a good article which I think refutes PrJ's position about the meaning and use of anthropos, one can read:

The Ambiguity of Anthropos:

http://www.bible-researcher.com/anthropos.html

Re: Feminism and the English Language
lm #281064 03/02/08 08:43 PM
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Very good! Thank you, ajk!

Re: Feminism and the English Language
PrJ #281066 03/02/08 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by PrJ
Dn. Anthony, I must admit that I still do not understand what you are asking. (I have a feeling it is because your questions presuppose a certain answer.)


It seems I have the worst of both worlds here. Though I have tried to ask my questions with increasing directness, they are not understood so, no answer. Yet they are felt to "presuppose a certain answer." Can you tell me then what is the answer that you feel they presuppose?

Originally Posted by PrJ
Anyway, I think what you are asking me about the translation. I have already written that the translation "for us human beings ... became a human being" would be an acceptable translation -- both linguistically and theologically.


linguistically: Are you OK with Jesus as the Son of Human Being? Or God made Human Being in His image?

theologically: I've been wondering about this one. What is the best reference specifically that incorporates the sense both of human (i.e. nature, physis) and being (ousia?) for Jesus as a "human being"?


Originally Posted by PrJ
The point of the Creed is to affirm Christ's full humanity not his maleness.


Exactly. (Yes, Father, we agree.)

Originally Posted by PrJ
Although, as I have written, his maleness is the way in which he united himself with our humanity, thus it is also appropriate theologically to say "and became man" -- although it is not as precise linguistically (in my opinion).


As you say, "The point of the Creed is to affirm Christ's full humanity not his maleness." I don't see how "his maleness" then needs to enter into a consideration of "and became man." Are you saying that "it is not as precise linguistically" because it can be misinterpreted to be non-inclusive (like for us men) but we are able to get away with it, so to speak, because He was a male?

That "his maleness is the way in which he united himself with our humanity, thus it is also appropriate theologically to say "and became man"" seems to be pointing us in the wrong direction, opposite to the "point of the Creed," i.e. this statement ("his maleness ..." etc.) actually has "and became man" affirming His maleness rather than common human nature.

Originally Posted by PrJ
I must also say on a personal level that I find your thinly veiled sarcasm to be a bit wearing psychologically. I would prefer it if you did not continue to exercise this argumentative ploy as it does not aid the discussion and certainly does not help to create a positive environment.


I did not mean nor is it my intention to mess with your psyche. Nor should you impugn my motives.

Originally Posted by PrJ
My comments were not meant to put any person down or to insinuate that I know better than others. The reality is that I have been blessed to have taken three years of advanced graduate study in koine Greek from some of the better Greek scholars in the field of New Testament studies. This study has given me insights into the way in which Greek functions that are difficult to explain to people who have not been blessed with these educational opportunities.


I genuinely want and have requested your opinion to questions as you are a scholar of the Greek language. I know this because you have told us so, and I thank you for informing me because I now know I can ask you questions about details without the appearance that I'm being too technical. But you are not directly answering any of my questions and they are not at all at the "rocket science" level of the Greek language. So please, to the point, answer them or not, but please no more of the "beat it kid you bother me" responses.

Dn. Anthony

Re: Feminism and the English Language
ajk #281068 03/02/08 09:49 PM
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Dn. Anthony, I have done my best to answer your questions as I have understood them. I apologize for not answering to your liking. At this point, we are rehashing old, worn out arguments and reiterating points already made. So for now, I retreat into the background. I have set aside my paying work long enough. I have exams to grade, two academic papers to write for conferences that I will be presenting at in the beginning of April, etc. So God bless your Lent!

Re: Feminism and the English Language
PrJ #281072 03/02/08 10:28 PM
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Originally Posted by PrJ
As I have stated, I support my bishops, I give thanks to God for their inspired leadership and for their commitment to leading the Church into the 21st century and to inspiring modern Eastern Catholics to boldly proclaim the saving Gospel of Christ to those who are in deep need of its salvific proclamation.
Your bishops are not infallible. When the reformed Divine Liturgy is rescinded by Rome, will you fight for neutered language?

Re: Feminism and the English Language
PrJ #281073 03/02/08 10:31 PM
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Originally Posted by PrJ
Both of these are scare tactics that do not address the core issues
The only frightening issue here is the modernism of feminized neutered language translations.

Re: Feminism and the English Language
PrJ #281075 03/02/08 10:36 PM
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Originally Posted by PrJ
True feminism is a positive consequence of the Christian tradition.
Every female I know (including my wife) loves and cherishes the reverent use of words such as man, men, mankind, brethren, etc in the Liturgy and the Sacred Scriptures. They understand these words to be all inclusive. That, my friend, is "true feminism".

Re: Feminism and the English Language
PrJ #281076 03/02/08 10:41 PM
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Originally Posted by PrJ

The RDL allows the people of God to hear in their own language, in words that they can easily understand, the truths of the Gospel. It centers the liturgy on the prayers and unites the entire people of God with the priest at the head in prayerful worship of the triune God.

This is holy fruit

Very interesting. Many (including myself when I was Byzantine Catholic) referred to it as a tragedy. I would say that the changes are "rotten fruit" and I still pray for it to be rescinded for the sake of my Byzantine brethren who continue to suffer.

Re: Feminism and the English Language
Father David #281092 03/03/08 12:40 AM
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With reference to Father David’s recent posting, I should like to join the discussion. I shall not pay much attention to specific question of feminist language; I discussed that in my book and I remain in support of Liturgiam Authenticam and of Pope Benedict’s recent clarifications of some specific requirements.

Father David’s comment that it is imperative that the hieratic prayers (often called the “secret” prayers or the prayers “in mystica” should be read aloud (or chanted) at the Divine Liturgy if the celebration is in a vernacular language (my italics) rather puzzles me, and would certainly limit the diction of these prayers aloud to a relatively small minority of celebrations of the Divine Liturgy: Liturgical Greek is still widespread; Church-Slavonic is even more wide-spread; Hungarian (and Japanese, for that matter) as these languages are used in the Divine Liturgy and other Byzantine divine services are not contemporary vernacular Hungarian (or vernacular Japanese), and so it goes. This has not prevented some groups – ZOE in Greece, for example – from staging celebrations of the Divine Liturgy with all the prayers read aloud, the Royal Doors open throughout, and so forth.

Up until quite recently, as liturgical history goes, the hieratic prayers were not even given – in any language – in prayer-manuals made available to lay people. It was formally forbidden to translate the Roman Canon into vernacular languages, let alone publish it. We would consider that bizarre today, but in living memory the very idea that people should have access to the hieratic prayers was considered dangerous.

I have been a vernacularist all of my adult life, and I remain so (although I am opposed to the other extreme: the attempt to forbid celebrations in the traditional liturgical languages and the failure to teach those languages to theological students). If anyone cares to accuse me of opposing the vernacular I shall die laughing and invite him to discuss the matter with people who know me.

Yet I fail to grasp why a vernacular celebration necessarily requires reading or chanting the hieratic prayers aloud, and why a celebration in a traditional liturgical language is curiously exempt from the same requirement. The hieratic prayers are not written (in Greek or in the better Church-Slavonic translations) in the sort of idiom that is unintelligible to people who really speak Greek, or Russian, or Ukrainian (one can compare, for example, the hieratic prayers to the Canons of Orthros, especially for certain feasts – or even to the Akathistos to the Theotokos, which is perennially popular but harder to follow).


It is possible to express the Paschal Mystery without demanding the diction of the Hieratic Prayers aloud – anyone who has ever stood for hours in the night of Holy Pascha has not awaited the Lord’s Resurrection in vain (if I may thus quote Father Taft).

Father David writes that “It was the intention of the bishops, clergy and faithful who worked on the Inter-eparchial Liturgy and Music Commissions to present the message of Christ to people through the Liturgy.” Well, I should hope that this was there intention. I should hope that this is the intention of all of us who serve the Divine Liturgy and those of us who participate in the effort to present the Divine Liturgy in as beautiful and authentic a way as is possible. Surely Father David is not implying that those who disagree with his particular approach to the hieratic prayers are specifically attempting to conceal the message of Christ.


It is not necessarily the case that those who produced the Revised Divine Liturgy currently in forced in the Pittsburgh Metropolitanate must be dull or unaware. What is far more likely is that those who produced and support this revised Divine Liturgy and those who oppose it are simply deriving their fundamental inspirations from rather different sources. My own impression is that the producers and supporters of this revised Divine Liturgy are inspired primarily by the Latin efforts of the late nineteen-sixties and the nineteen-seventies (which deliberately turned its back on much of the work of the twentieth century liturgical movement, as such men as Louis Bouyer have testified at some length).

Those of us who respond differently are, equally simply, inspired by a genuine ressourcement and the recognition of the need for serious repristination.



Father David suggests that those of us who oppose the revision now in force in the Pittsburgh Metropolitanate believe that “an authentic Liturgy, one faithful to the Byzantine tradition, can be and can only be one that corresponds exactly and literally - word for word and comma for comma - to the 1941 Oriental Congregation edition for the Ruthenian recension.” If Father David has ever met anyone who holds to that idea in its fullness I would appreciate an introduction – I’ve never in my life run across such a person, and I have devoted a great deal of time to liturgiology and research.

The 1941 recensio rutena edition was published under considerable time pressure: the War was in full swing, no one could be sure how long Metropolitan Andrew would remain alive and functional, even to the limited extent that he could function then (the Metropolitan was bedridden); no one could be certain how long Cardinal Tisserant would remain at the head of the Oriental Congregation, and Father Cyril Korolevsky was an old man in poor health himself. It was necessary to seize the moment and not leave the Church with yet another aborted project to put the liturgical situation of the Ruthenians into some semblance of order.

Hence the 1941 edition, which is in fact a heavily Niconianized version of a rather superficial idea of the Ruthenian Liturgy. Still, it represents a qualitative improvement over what preceded it, and conforms to some, at least, of the principles that would prove to be of lasting value.

Sixty-seven years later, there has been much invaluable scholarship, sources have become available which were not available in 1941, and we have experienced such matters as the Second Vatican Council, the further work of the Liturgical Movement before the Council . . . there is serious work to be done still, and plenty of it, but we can move ahead. In the specific case of the Ruthenians, we now have access to the Kyivan service-books and the Old-Ritualist service-books.

However, the 1941 Divine Liturgy is still at the time of writing normative for the Ruthenian tradition, and the Local Churches that lay claim to that tradition. As Lambert Beauduin correctly insisted, we cannot reform what we do not know. The adamant refusal to use the 1941 edition has characterized the Pittsburgh jurisdiction through all its permutations since 1941. That refusal continues today. Hence this is the last jurisdiction that can assert competence to produce a “new” Ruthenian Liturgy. First give the 1941 edition a fair trial, then do some serious study, and only then start making and discussing serious proposals.

Yet again Father David insists – on the basis of a 2001 letter that no one appears to have seen – that the revised Divine Liturgy derives its authority from the same source as the 1941 Divine Liturgy (wrong in itself; the 1941 Divine Liturgy was authorized by Pope Pius XII): the Oriental Congregation. This is absurd, if only because whatever version was submitted in 2001 is not and cannot be what was printed several years later. The promulgation of the 1941 Liturgy was published for all to read in Orientalia Christiana Periodica; English translations are available. Where, then, is this alleged letter of 2001? If we cannot see it and read it, we are under no obligation to accept it.


The “not so subtle Latinizations” which contributed towards the mess of the Ruthenian Liturgy as it could be observed in many parishes of the Pittsburgh jurisdiction cannot be laid at the door of the 1941 translation! In most cases, they predate that edition. It would be worthwhile to study these “not so subtle Latinizations” in detail and determine just how, when, and where they actually arose and what were – and are – the presuppositions behind them.

Father David writes – correctly – that the 1964/5 English translation, in spite of the approvals it carried was not really intended by the Bishops of Pittsburgh and Passaic to be normative. He acknowledges that this was anomalous, but asserts that such anomalies are commonplace. Not really. Some anomalies can always be found, but it is almost unheard-of for the Bishops to issue what looks like an official service-book and almost simultaneously notify their clergy that this book is not to be followed, under pain of drastic sanctions! This is not just an anomaly: this is ambiguity and duplicity, for which there is no legitimate place in the Church.


Father David concludes by writing that the Niconian Liturgy “was quite successful - it worked! It is the Liturgy that is still frequently defended on this forum - today, more that 400 years later. Maybe the Spirit was guiding Nicon, and maybe the Spirit is guiding our bishops and translators today.”

Where does one begin? No, it did not work. Despite the best efforts of the Russian Emperors and their State Church, using frightening methods of coercion, the Old-Ritualists, who did not and do not accept the Niconian Liturgy, numbered in the millions until the end of the Russian Empire. The Old Ritualists, like all other religions in the USSR, suffered under the Bolshevik persecution (which, as they do not tire of reminding others, was inspired by the measures used by the Emperors to crush the Old Ritualists) but nevertheless survived, and are now enjoying an impressive revival. And there are voices within the Moscow Patriarchate calling for the reversal of what Nicon “accomplished”.

I would agree that whatever guided Nicon is, in general terms, guiding those who seek to impose the revised Divine Liturgy currently in force in Pittsburgh – and I do not intend that to be a compliment. Nicon’s reform was an absolute disaster for the Russian Church. It would be desirable for the Metropolitan and Bishops of the Pittsburgh Metropolitanate to have what Nicon lacked – the humility and courage to recognize that they have done something which should not have been done, and withdraw it.

Fr. Serge






Re: Feminism and the English Language
Fr Serge Keleher #281107 03/03/08 02:55 AM
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My own impression is that the producers and supporters of this revised Divine Liturgy are inspired primarily by the Latin efforts of the late nineteen-sixties and the nineteen-seventies (which deliberately turned its back on much of the work of the twentieth century liturgical movement, as such men as Louis Bouyer have testified at some length).


Yes, but in turning their backs on the liturgical movement (and the tabernacle) they turned their faces to the people -- the key to the success of the novus ordo!

Re: Feminism and the English Language
Father David #281115 03/03/08 05:59 AM
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Father David wrote: The 1941 translation is a work of the Oriental Congregation. However, the same dicastery has said (in 2001), that the 2007 translation is in essential agreement with the tradition of this recension and the norms of faithfulness to the Eastern tradition as spelled out in the 1996 Liturgical Instruction.

This is a falsehood plain and simple. I attended the Orientale Lumen XI West conference June 25-28 at USD. I met Father Archimandrite Robert Taft. I asked him, "How many people at the Oriental Congregation were involved in the review and approval of the revised translation of the Divine Liturgy?" He answered, "You're looking at him!" I was silent, but must have registered surprise on my face, because he followed that up with, "It's better to have it done by one man who knows what he's doing than by fifteen who don't!"

There is no way you can represent the review and approval of one man - a man who has repeatedly stated his support of feminist gender inclusive language and hence has a bias contrary to the formal authority of Liturgiam Authenticam - as a "dicastery of the Holy See."

Re: Feminism and the English Language
lm #281140 03/03/08 12:09 PM
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in turning their backs on the liturgical movement (and the tabernacle) [ those responsible for the Latin efforts of the late nineteen-sixties and the nineteen-seventies ] turned their faces to the people -- the key to the success of the novus ordo!


I'm not sure precisely what point LM is trying to make here. Worship is the adoration of God. We do not come to church to adore the congregation, nor do we come to church to adore the Priest. It may be that lm is using the phrase "the success of the novus ordo" ironically - it is a strange success that involves plummetting numbers in church attendance, a shocking decline in vocations to the priesthood and the monastic life, and a stunning ignorance of the teachings of the Faith and indifference to those teachings.

But the problems created by the "Mass facing the people" have been explored at length by others, including such men as Archimandrite Boniface (Luykx) and Father Louis Bouyer, who were far more qualified than I am, so whoever is interested should read what these men and their associates wrote.

We may all be grateful that the innovation of "Mass facing the people" was not introduced by the revised Divine Liturgy currently in force in the Pittsburgh Metropolitanate.

If LM is trying to suggest that the revisers paid attention to the people and were inspired by some sort of popular wish to produce this revised version, one can only say that there is not a shred of evidence to prove it; the revisers took good care to keep what they were producing "under wraps" and did not permit a serious discussion of what they were planning to take place even among the clergy, let alone among the faithful. There was no semblance of "popular demand" for this revision.

Fr. Serge

Re: Feminism and the English Language
Fr Serge Keleher #281150 03/03/08 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Serge Keleher
the revisers took good care to keep what they were producing "under wraps" and did not permit a serious discussion of what they were planning to take place even among the clergy, let alone among the faithful. There was no semblance of "popular demand" for this revision.

Indeed!!!

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