By Ben Barrack
Soon after the beginning of every Catholic Mass, a prayer known as the “Gloria” is sung by the congregation. Since 1969, the opening line of the refrain began with:
Glory to God in the highest, and peace to his people on earth.
In 2011, under Pope Benedict XVI, that opening line was subtly, yet dramatically changed to:
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to people of good will.
I have not consulted with any Catholic scholars (hopefully one can comment), nor am I one myself but this appears to be a seed planted in Catholic doctrine that could grow into something mighty. At it’s very core, the newer translation seems to rebuke left-wing ideology and the wicked idea of ‘tolerance’ at all costs.
In that line, who is left out and how are they to be defined?
The unspoken inverse of this line would seem to exclude a prayer for peace toward people of ILL will. Taken to an extreme, one could see it as a command to fight purveyors of evil. Is not war the opposite of peace?
If “peace” is prayed for people of “good will”, what are we supposed to pray for when it comes to the opposite of such people?
An important question is, where did this change come from? It’s not new. In fact, it’s very old and seems to resemble an archaeological find. Scott P. Richert explains in an article about the changes:
All the new translation does is tighten up some very loose translations of the Latin text…
So, in early Latin masses, the congregation prayed only for people of good will to have peace?
Unless I’m mistaken (someone please feel free to correct me), this short line is a command for Christians to draw a line in the sand, to actively side with the persecuted, and possibly even – as Godly vessels – to actively fight people of ill will when the time comes.
tick… tick… tick…