16 October 2016

Swiss Old Catholic Eucharistic Prayer


In Switzerland the Old Catholics of the Union of Utrecht are called Christ-Katholiken.  In 1974 these Christ-Catholics (Utrecht) promulgated a reformed Order for the Eucharistic Sacrifice.  They continue to use their version of the Tridentine Mass translated and altered by their Bishop Herzog. Their new form brought their Eucharistic celebration into a relationship with the Roman Catholic's Novus Ordo Missae but retained more elements of the Tridentine than the Novus Ordo Missae did.

Because I received so many questions about the Swiss Old Catholics, I thought I would include an English translation of a portion of their 1970's era Eucharistic Prayer (which did not replace their version of the Tridentine Mass but rather stood aside it like an Alternative Services order for Eucharist).  What the situation is in the Swiss Christ-Catholic Church today I do not know. My knowledge is very dated, but from what I have read, the 1974 Eucharistic Prayer continues to be used.  What follows is that part of the Eucharistic Prayer that comes after the Sanctus:

             Truly holy, truly glorified
             is your son Jesus Christ,
             our Lord and Saviour,
             that you, eternal Father, have sent us,
             so that he may reveal your majesty and love
             and deliver the world through his obedience
             even to death on the cross. 

             You have given him up for us
             so that he, through his sacrifice, once and for all
             may break the might of sin and death
             and grant new life to the whole of creation.
             Through him you have ordained us to celebrate
             in this meal the mystery
             of his death and resurrection
             until he comes in glory. 

             For on the evening before his suffering
             he took bread,
             looked up to you, O God,
             his almighty Father,
             gave you thanks, broke it,
             gave it to his disciples and said:
             Take this and eat of it, all of you;
             this is my body
             which will be given up for you. 

             In the same way, after the meal,
             he also took the chalice,
             gave thanks to you once more,
             gave it to his disciples and said:
             Take this and drink of it, all of you;
             this is my blood,
             the blood of the new and everlasting covenant,
             that for you and for all men will be shed
             for the forgiveness of sins.
             Do this in my memory
             until the time I celebrate anew the banquet with you
             in the kingdom of God. 

             Therefore, Lord,
             we present this bread and this chalice to you,
             remembering the saving passion of your Son,
             as too his resurrection from the dead
             and his ascension into glory.
             With his sacrifice 
             we come into your presence and beseech you:
             Look down graciously on these gifts,
             as you looked favourably down
             on the sacrifices of Abel, Abraham, and Melchisedech. 

             Send your Holy Spirit,
             giver of all life and sanctification
             to bless, sanctify and consecrate these gifts
             that the bread we break
             may be the communion of the Body of the Lord
             and the chalice over which we give thanks
             the communion of the Blood of Jesus Christ.
             Fill us all who, from this altar, receive
             the Body and Blood of your Son,
             with the power of the Holy Spirit.
             Let us become one as members of your people
             in communion with your saints
             and have a share in the life of the kingdom to come. 

             Grant us this,
             merciful, Holy God,
             so that we may praise and glorify you
             through Jesus Christ, your son, our Lord;
             Through him and with him and in him
             be to you, almighty Father,
             in union with the Holy Spirit
             all honour and glory for ever and ever.

The translation above is based upon that made by Dr R. J. Parish, Fellow, of St Catherine's College, Oxford for an article by P.G. Cobb (Oxford). That article may be found in PDF file format at this link.  The article by Cobb includes a translation from Bishop Herzorg's original version of the Tridentine Canon of the Mass as well as an explanation of the overall structure of the 1974 Order for Eucharist.