Christopher Carstens

In Encountering the Words of Christ in the Mass, Christopher Carstens reflects upon the third edition of the Roman Missal, giving particular attention to the changes in the Mass texts.

Christopher Carstens holds a B.A. from the Oratory of St. Philip in Toronto, and M.A. in Philosophy from the University of Dallas and a M.A. (Liturgical Studies) from The Liturgical Institute. He is currently the Director of the Office of Sacred Worship for the Diocese of LaCrosse, Wisconsin, where he serves as Coordinator of Pontifical Liturgies, liturgical coordinator for the Permanent Deacon formation program, and diocesan Director of RCIA. He is an adjunct faculty member at the Liturgical Institute and a frequent presenter in liturgical conferences and parish education. He is a member of the Society for Catholic Liturgy and is married with four children. Mr. Carstens is one of the presenters of Mystical Body, Mystical Voice.

Todd WilliamsonIn this blog, Praying, Believing, and Living, D. Todd Williamson discusses the pastoral, spiritual, and ministerial ramifications of the revised English translation of the Roman Missal.  Todd's blog is updated every other week.

Todd Williamson is the current Director of the Office for Divine Worship of the Archdiocese of Chicago. He is the author of two editions of Sourcebook for Sundays, Seasons, and Weekdays:The Almanac for Pastoral Liturgy (2007 and 2008, LTP) and has contributed to subsequent editions. He is also co-author of Bringing Catechesis and Liturgy Together: Let the Mystery Lead You! (2002, TwentyThird Publications), and he has written for numerous periodicals (Rite, Pastoral Liturgy, Catechumenate, and Religion Teacher's Journal).

In addition to writing, he is a teacher and national speaker in the areas of liturgy and the sacraments. He is co-host of the monthly radio program, Focus on the Liturgy, which airs on the fourth Wednesday of every month on Relevant Radio 950 AM, in the Chicagoland area.

Todd has been the director of the Office for Divine Worship for eight years. As such, he has dealt with countless pastoral situations in regards to the liturgy. It is from this unique experience that he writes in this blog: breaking open the English texts and making connections to our spiritual and ministerial lives as people of faith.

A native of Pittsburgh, PA, Sandra Dooley moved to Los Angeles in 1999 after 18 years in Orlando, FL. where she spent 10 years as the liturgy director of St. Margaret Mary Parish in Winter Park. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education and a Master of Pastoral Studies degree from Loyola University in New Orleans, with emphasis in liturgy. She is an experienced church musician, religious educator and liturgist, and has been a committee member, coordinator and/or speaker at local and national conferences.

In June, 2001, Sandra joined the Office for Worship of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles as Associate Director. She was Director of the Office from April, 2003 through July, 2009. She also served on the Board of Directors of the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions (FDLC) from 2004 until her return to FL in 2009.

Sandy currently serves as the director of liturgy at St. Margaret Mary Church in Winter Park, FL, and as a member of the Board of Directors of the North American Forum on the Catechumenate.


Blog Posts
By Christopher Carstens on 2/17/2011 11:43 AM

Over the past few entries we have been examining the Gloria. Similar to the “little doxology” or “Glory be,” in this “greater doxology” the Mystical Body gives voice to her love and devotion to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.


Because the object of our speaking is God, and because the purpose of our speaking is to glorify him, our song is, in its parts and on the whole, soaring, grand, and lofty. Consider, by way of comparison, how the groom answers the question on his wedding day: “John, do you take Mary for your lawful wife, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do you part?” If John so agrees, he says “I do,” and not “Yea,” “Yup,” or even simply “Yes.” The words, syntax, and style—what is called the “linguistic register”—is suitable to the occasion. So, too, when we speak to God: the register matches purpose.


In addition to those human devices found in high linguistic registers,...
By Sandra Dooley on 2/17/2011 11:39 AM
Have you worked out a plan for implementation in your parish? I would like to share with you some ideas that were put forth at the colloquium I attended a couple of weeks ago in Washington, DC. If you have not yet formed a team to carry out the preparation and implementation of the new texts, now is the time to do so. Include a variety of people on that team, e.g., a member of the finance committee, someone from the religious education department, someone from the Catholic school, etc. Everyone on the team should be familiar with “key documents,” such as the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, the General Instruction of the Roman Missal, Sing to the Lord: Music in Divine Worship, and, of course, the new texts of The Roman Missal. Team members should also have access to a good selection of resources that are being published as well as what is available on the Internet. This site, of course, offers a wealth of information and helpful materials to use in the parish, some of which are at no cost....
By Sandra Dooley on 2/17/2011 11:38 AM
I attended a colloquium sponsored by the National Pastoral Musicians (NPM) last week. It was a gathering of about 150 pastoral musicians and liturgists. We listened to presentations about The Roman Missal and the music of The Roman Missal. We also spent a good bit of time discussing the information we had been given as well as what it means for implementation in our parishes and other institutions. The presentation by Father Richard Hilgartner, who is now the executive director of the United States Secretariat on Divine Worship, was very informative. Two ideas that he mentioned were especially significant to me. First, our preparation needs to be for the long term. It should not stop on the date of implementation. There will be a good bit of catechesis to be done after we begin using the new translation. We all know that, in spite of our best intentions and efforts, there will be people in the parish who will come to church on the First Sunday of Advent and wonder what is going on! Perhaps, you will want to...
By Todd Williamson on 1/31/2011 7:09 PM
We’re now less than 10 months away from the implementation of the English translation of the third edition of The Roman Missal, scheduled to begin on the first weekend of Advent, November 26/27, 2011. As our Office of Divine Worship continues to present study days all over the Archdiocese of Chicago, the rallying call has become, “You should be doing things in preparation now!”

In one of the sessions of these study days, we offer suggested resources and strategies for preparation. Among those suggestions, the following are stressed and I offer them here for your consideration:

Use the parish bulletin to relay information to parishioners about the English translation of the Missal: Use bulletin inserts. There are many fine series available online – and they’re free! See LTP’s offerings on this website and those offered by the USCCB. Point parishioners to the USCCB Web site and encourage them to download the English translation of the Order of Mass. Give...
By Sandra Dooley on 1/31/2011 7:04 PM
I recently read an article by Father Mark Francis that posed the question, “How can we promote active participation in light of these new texts?” He went on to say,: “If we limit ourselves to dealing with the verbal changes in the texts of the Mass, we will be missing an important opportunity to attend to what ultimately is a more effective way to promote active participation: the whole of our liturgical and sacramental tradition itself, which has always gone beyond the verbal” (“Liturgical Participation of God’s People,” in With One Voice, FDLC, 2010). This is a good reminder to us that the rituals, the symbols, and the inherent mystery we celebrate at Mass are not changing. It is only the words, the text of our prayers that will change. And with the changes of text, we will still be challenged to celebrate the Mass well. Using the new texts will hopefully bring about a new or renewed mindfulness when we celebrate the Eucharist. All of us will be more aware of what we are saying and what the priest is saying....