VOX CLARA COMMITTEE
October 29-31, 2012
The members and staff of the Vox Clara Committee met from October 29-31, 2012 at the Pontifical North American College in Rome. This Committee of senior Bishops from Episcopal Conferences throughout the English-speaking world was formed by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments on July 19, 2001 in order to provide advice to the Holy See concerning English-language liturgical texts and to strengthen effective cooperation with the Conferences of Bishops in this regard.
The Vox Clara Committee is chaired by Cardinal George Pell (Sydney). The participants in the meeting were Bishop Thomas Olmsted (Phoenix), First Vice-Chairman; Cardinal Oswald Gracias (Bombay), Second Vice-Chairman; Bishop Arthur Serratelli (Paterson), Secretary; Cardinal Justin Rigali (Philadelphia, emeritus), Treasurer; Cardinal John Tong Hon (Hong Kong); Archbishop Alfred Hughes (New Orleans, emeritus); Archbishop Michael Neary (Tuam); Archbishop Terrence Prendergast, S.J. (Ottawa); and Bishop David McGough (Birmingham, auxiliary). Cardinal Francis George, O.M.I. (Chicago) was unable to attend the meeting.
Also assisting the meeting were the Executive Secretary, Monsignor James P. Moroney; experts: Father Dennis McManus and Father Jeremy Driscoll, O.S.B.; advisors: Abbot Cuthbert Johnson, O.S.B. and Monsignor Gerard McKay; and special assistants: Reverend Joseph Briody and Reverend Gerard Byrne.
The representatives of the Holy See included the Delegate to the Vox Clara Committee, Reverend Anthony Ward, S.M., Undersecretary of the Congregation; Monsignor Anthony Kollamparampil; and Reverend Andrew Menke.
Various members of the Committee reported on the reception of the English translation of the Roman Missal throughout the world and ntoed with gratitude the contribution of priests in its effective implementation.
The main work of the Committee was an intensive review of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL) Green Book translations of the Order of Confirmation and the Order of Celebrating Marriage. The members noted that all involved have gained from the experience in producing the translation of the Missale Romanum over the past decade. Making a limited number of general and specific observations on these texts to the Congregation, the members look forward to the successful completion of this project with the publication of the ICEL Gray Books early next year.
In reviewing the timelines for translation of the remaining editiones typicae by ICEL, the Committee was gratified by the Commission’s careful attention to maintaining a process which is both expeditious and attentive to the need for careful consultation on all levels.
The Committee was gratified by the success of the Roman Pontifical, recently published by Vox Clara on behalf of the Congregation. With over a thousand copies in use throughout the English-speaking world, the Roman Pontifical brings a certain stability and uniformity to liturgical practice. Further publication projects were also discussed.
On the second day of the meeting, Cardinal Pell welcomed Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, as well as the new Secretary, Archbishop Arthur Roche, noting the Archbishop Secretary’s significant contribution to the work of liturgical translation during his years as Chairman of ICEL. The Prefect expressed his thanks to the Vox Clara Committee not only for its assistance to the Congregation through the years, but also for the model of episcopal collaboration which it has provided in the important work of the translation of liturgical texts of the Roman Rite.
On the last day, the Committee was received in audience by Pope Benedict XVI, who warmly greeted the members and advisors and thanked them for their work.