‘Our Father’ translation not on ICEL agenda yet

People pray the “Our Father” at Mass at St Patrick’s Cathedral in Auckland on December 17.

Auckland Bishop Patrick Dunn said the International Commission on English in the Liturgy is not currently considering changing the line in “Our Father” which Pope Francis considered to be a poor translation from the Latin.

The Catholic News Service reported that Pope Francis remarked the line “lead us not into temptation” is not a good translation.

The Pope made the comment on the Italian bishops’ television channel, TV2000, which has been broadcasting a series of conversations between the Pope and Catholic prison chaplain Fr Marco Pozza looking at the Lord’s Prayer line by line.

The Pope said the Italian and English translations of the “Our Father” can give believers the wrong impression that God can and does lead people into temptation.

“I’m the one who falls. But it’s not (God) who pushes me into temptation to see how I fall. No, a father does not do this. A father helps us up immediately,” the Pope said.

“The one who leads us into temptation is Satan,” the Pope added. “That’s Satan’s job.”

Bishop Dunn, New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference president and representative on ICEL, said the subject is not on the commission’s agenda.

“I think most English speakers know the phrase is archaic, and means ‘do not allow us to be led into temptation’,” he said. “The Spanish or the Italian translations would be fine also in an English version,” Bishop Dunn said.

The new Spanish translation is “y no nos dejes caer en al tentación” which means “do not let us fall into temptation”. The previous version was “y no nos metas en tentación” or “do not put us in temptation”.

The Italian bishops’ conference in 2008 adopted a new translation of the Bible; for the Lord’s Prayer both in Matthew 6 and Luke 11, they chose “do not abandon us in temptation”, although they did not order the change in liturgical use.

Pope Francis did not say whether he will order a new translation, but he noted that the French bishops had already changed the line to the equivalent of “do not let us enter into temptation”. They began using the new translation on December 3, the first day of Advent.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church, in its discussion of the Lord’s Prayer, says, “Our sins result from our consenting to temptation; we therefore ask our Father not to ‘lead’ us into temptation. It is difficult to translate the Greek verb used by a single English word: the Greek means both ‘do not allow us to enter into temptation’ and ‘do not let us yield to temptation’.”

Referring to James 1:13, the catechism says, “’God cannot be tempted by evil and he himself tempts no one’; on the contrary, he wants to set us free from evil. We ask him not to allow us to take the way that leads

Posted in

Rowena Orejana

Reader Interactions

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *