Thursday, August 24, 2006

Extreme Makeover: Rosary Edition


So I was reading today over at the Cafeteria is Closed and I came across some interesting quotes from Fr. Art of the Mission Basilica of San Juan Capistrano about the new mass translations. I thought it would be fun to find a new way to pray the Rosary as well, and get young people involved in praying it in the "Spirit of Vatican II".

But to do that we've got to fix up some of the language to make it more understandable, more hip even. After all, we can't simply expect our youth to read past a 4th grade level. No, we have to be sympathetic and lower our expectations beyond all hope of rational thought. That will surely show how far we are willing to go for our people. In fact it is pastorally necessary.

Ok, so let's take the Hail Mary for starters. Since the Church did away with Latin definitively after Vatican II, we'll start with the current outdated English version.

Hail Mary, Full of Grace, the Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.

OK, if you are still with me then you must be pretty bright. After all, thats some hefty language. Lets start dynamically equivocating!

The first line could use some work. Right off the bat I can tell you that "thee" is a goner. Nobody knows what "thee" is and its probably sexist anyway. "Lord" is too authoritative (and masculine), so we'll change that to "God". Furthermore, "Hail" nowadays means big ice rocks that fall the from the sky. That one's out too. "Full of Grace" is just the long form of graceful, and that means "pretty", doesn't it? With a little moving around and rewording, we've got our first new sentence:

"Hello pretty Mary. God loves you."

The second outdated line, the "Blessed art thou amongst women..." one is going to get an overhaul too. How on earth can our youth know what "Fruit of thy womb" is?! Doesn't this also imply that women are nothing more than baby factories? Not in my church they aren't! Let's brighten this one up a bit.

"You are the best woman ever because your baby Jesus is awesome."

Oo, and the third line is just ugly. We can't even get anyone in the confessionals, so how are we going to expect people to admit they are sinners continually for a half hour? Death isn't very pleasant either. We're trying to make the Rosary more popular, and that means sometimes you've got to cut corners. This one need a complete revision.

"Help us to make positive life decisions and bring us to paradise."

And finally - "Amen". We're kidding ourselves here: a-MEN?! No way. And since we've got to be hip, lets insert a little bit of "young language." The results....

The NEW "Hail Mary"!!

Hello pretty Mary. God loves you.
You are the best woman ever because your baby Jesus is awesome.
Help us to make positive life decisions and bring us to paradise.
Thanks a bunch.


Anonymous said...

Not many things can make me laugh at 7AM, but this is great!

Roman Sacristan said...

I'd say you captured the spirit of "dynamic equivalency." LOL.
I tend to prefer dynamically translating "Amen" as "Word!" (or really "Wurd") to be a bit more "multicultural" and all. :P
I guess in this case when praying to Christ you could "dynamic equivalently" say "Wurd to your Mother."
[ducks to avoid lightening strike]

Matt said...

I almost added "ttyl" after Thanks a bunch!, but figured not everyone knows how to pray online yet.

Either way, I think this is a monumental step forward in bead-prayer.

Roman Sacristan said...

Nooooo, not a internet forum AOL'er "translation!" LOL.

"The whole truth is generally the ally of virtue; a half-truth is always the ally of some vice." - G.K. Chesterton