Missal version without holy see nod: Petition - The New Indian Express

Missal version without holy see nod: Petition

Published: 07th November 2013 07:52 AM

Last Updated: 07th November 2013 07:52 AM

A civil court here has restrained churches from using a 1993 Tamil translation of the Roman Missal, terming it “unbiblical and ultra vires” of the Canon Law in a suit filed by three faithfuls who claimed to be members of the Roman Catholic Church.

In their petition, G Alex Benziger, Leonard Vasanth and J V Fernando contended that the defendants, consisting of Archbishops and Bishops, revised and released a new version of the Missal in 1993. But, the translation was not placed before the Holy See, the episcopal jurisdiction of the Roman Catholic Church in Rome, for approval.

However, the defendants denied any wrongful translation and maintained that it had been approved by the Catholic Bishops of Tamil Nadu, who have absolute authority in such matters. Further, no one to date has raised any questions on the translation and the suit has been filed with ulterior motives, they claimed.

Quoting several examples from the translations and comparing it with the 1979 version of the Tamil Missal, IV Assistant Judge T Chandrasekar said the 1993 translations are “highly obnoxious, careless and confusing”. The defendants have also failed to place on record any evidence to prove that the translation received the approval of the Holy See, the judge said.

“The defendants cannot take it for granted that whatever mischief they can do, it is seldom possible for anybody to bring it to the knowledge of the Holy See of Vatican and under the guise  of questioning the jurisdiction of civil courts to entertain the law suit, they can escape from the clutches of law,” the order said and restrained the usage of the translation in Roman Catholic churches.

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