Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Vox Clara Committee Continues Work on English Liturgical Texts

The Vox Clara Committee met from May 19-20, 2014 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 books and to strengthen effective cooperation with the Conferences of Bishops in this regard.

The Vox Clara Committee is chaired by Cardinal George Pell (Prefect of the Holy See’s Secretariat for the Economy). Participants in the May 19-20, 2014 meeting included Bishop Thomas Olmsted, First Vice-Chairman (Phoenix), Cardinal Justin Rigali, Treasurer (Philadelphia, Emeritus), Archbishop Alfred Hughes (New Orleans, Emeritus) and Archbishop Terrence Prendergast, S.J. (Ottawa). Cardinal Oswald Gracias, Second Vice-Chairman (Bombay), Bishop Arthur Serratelli, Secretary (Paterson), Cardinal Francis George, O.M.I. (Chicago) and Cardinal John Tong Hon (Hong Kong), Archbishop Michael Neary (Tuam) and Bishop David McGough (Birmingham, Auxiliary) were unable to be present for this meeting.

Also assisting the meeting were Monsignor James P. Moroney (Executive Secretary), Reverend Dennis McManus (expert), Monsignor Gerard McKay (advisor), Reverend Joseph Briody (special assistant) and Reverend Gerard Byrne (special assistant). Reverend Jeremy Driscoll, O.S.B (expert) and Abbot Cuthbert Johnson, O.S.B. (advisor) were unable to be present.

The representatives of the Holy See included the Delegate to the Vox Clara Committee, Reverend Anthony Ward, S.M., Undersecretary of the Congregation, accompanied by officials of the Congregation.

The Committee heard reports on the reception of the Roman Missal in the English-speaking world and a variety of practical matters.

The Committee spent the greatest amount of time reviewing the ICEL Gray Book Translations of the Ordo Celebrandi Matrimonium and the Ordo Confirmationis as recently approved by several English-speaking Conferences of Bishops. The Committee was grateful for the quality of these translations and developed a limited list of recommendations concerning their refinement which it submitted to the Congregation.

The Committee also approved plans for the completion of a revision of the Ratio Translationis for the Missale Romanum, editio typica tertia in accordance with Liturgiam authenticam, no. 9.

Archbishop Arthur Roche, Secretary of the Congregation, joined the Vox Clara Committee for the first morning of its work. The Secretary thanked the members “for the painstaking process” which they followed in reviewing the ICEL translations and extended to the members the gratitude of the Congregation for their advice.

This was the twenty-third meeting of the Vox Clara Committee which will continue its work in October of 2014.


  1. Stay out of politics! This is not Ireland, and we do not need that kind of interference with the political parties!

    1. The topic is Vox Clara...but I wonder if there is anyone on the committee who actually knows anything about modern English? Experts? Rarely would clerics have that to your comment: It is the duty of bishops to speak up when church doctrine is challenged especially by someone who is "Catholic'...good to see them speaking up even if they took their time.

  2. Speaking up, mainly to their own cluster, does not much for the Catechising of the Laity- the abandonded and forgotten parts in every Diocese.
    The Shepherds have abandonded their sheep !