Haste & Heroism

April 2008

On February 5, Pope Benedict XVI officially revised the prayer "For Conversion of the Jews" in the Tridentine Good Friday liturgy. At issue, among many Jewish organizations and spokesmen and Catholic ecumenists, was the wording of the prayer in the 1962 Tridentine missal. The full text of the 1962 prayer reads:
    Let us pray also for the Jews: that our God and Lord would remove the veil from their hearts: that they also may acknowledge our Lord Jesus Christ.
    Let us pray. Let us kneel down. Arise.
    Almighty and everlasting God, Who drivest not away from Thy mercy even the Jews: hear our prayers which we offer for the blindness of that people: that acknowledging the light of Thy truth, which is Christ, they may be rescued from their darkness.
    Through the same our Lord. Amen.
The revised prayer reads:
    Let us also pray for the Jews, that God our Lord should illuminate their hearts, so that they will recognize Jesus Christ, the Savior of all men.
    Let us pray. Let us genuflect. Rise.
    All-powerful and eternal God, you who wish that all men be saved and come to the recognition of truth, graciously grant that when the fullness of peoples enters your Church all of Israel will be saved.
    Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Pope Benedict based his revision on the text of Romans 11, particularly verses 25-26: "that blindness in part has happened in Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles should come in. And so all Israel should be saved, as it is written: There shall come out of Sion, he that shall deliver and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob" (Douay-Rheims; italics in original).

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New Oxford Notes: April 2008

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