Concelebration in Multiple Languages?

What happens when a bunch of priests from different places are together, and there is a concelebrated Mass? Can they all just say the various parts of the Eucharistic Prayer in their own individual languages?

A mega concelebration in St. Peter’s Square.

The answer is:
NO, there is to be a common language, at least for the Eucharistic Prayer.

Here is what the Church’s liturgical law, as expressed in the Instruction Redemptionis Sacramentum, published under Blessed Pope John Paul II, has to say:

When Mass is concelebrated by several Priests, a language known both to all the concelebrating Priests and to the gathered people should be used in the recitation of the Eucharistic Prayer. Where it happens that some of the Priests who are present do not know the language of the celebration and therefore are not capable of pronouncing the parts of the Eucharistic Prayer proper to them, they should not concelebrate, but instead should attend the celebration in choral dress in accordance with the norms.

Following liturgical law faithfully guarantees that our worship be truly Catholic – which is to say, “universal”, the meaning of the word “Catholic”. When we go from parish to parish, no matter where we are in the world, we should see a certain continuity, because all are doing things the way they should be done. Unfortunately, in this regard we still have a long way to go.

There is a lot more I could say about things like Latin, concelebration, individual celebration, etc., but we’ll leave it there for now and save some things for future posts.

Why am I posting this? Well, besides the fact that I came across it while studying for an exam, it is also an “issue” that I regularly have to face. These things need to be more widely known!

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