President delivers report and New English-language edition of the Roman Missal launched

Tuesday, October 18 2011
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Plenary2011_1(CCCB – Ottawa)… The first day of the annual Plenary Assembly of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) saw a number of major interventions. These included the report of CCCB President Bishop Pierre Morissette of Saint-Jérôme, Quebec; the first presentation by the guest speaker, Archbishop Robert Le Gall, O.S.B., of Toulouse, France; and the address by Archbishop Pedro López Quintana, Apostolic Nuncio to Canada. For the first time in CCCB history, the Canadian Catholic television channel Salt + Light TV broadcast live a number of the Plenary events, on both internet and television.

In his report for 2010-2011, Bishop Morissette focused on the New Evangelization. “It was Blessed John Paul II who proposed this forward-looking approach to the Church already during the 1980s,” he said. “The significance of the Pope’s remarks was echoed at the turn of the millennium in his frequently quoted phrase ‘setting out into the deep’. The New Evangelization will be the topic for next year’s Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, as well as for the upcoming Meeting of the Bishops of the Church in America.”

Bishop Morissette outlined what he considered the foundational elements of the New Evangelization. “These are based on the experiences of the Church over the past generation, and are also evident in our universal, national and diocesan experiences as Church,” he said. “These same elements are apparent in the documents from the Magisterium since the Second Vatican Council, as indicated in the two texts that will be key for our Plenary this year, Sacramentum Caritatis and Verbum Domini. What I wish to do in this report is to link a number of these elements to an overview of what is to come during our Plenary Assembly this week.”

The Plenary began 17 October and continues until 21 October at the Nav Canada Centre, Cornwall, Ontario. At the end of the meeting, Bishop Morissette will finish his two-year term as President. 

Following the report of the President, Bishops Noel Simard and Gerald Wiesner, O.M.I., presented the report of the Catholic Organization for Life and Family (www.colf.ca) which gave an account of its work and projects over the past year. Following this, Bishops Claude Champagne, O.M.I., and Murray Chatlain outlined the past year’s work of the Canadian Catholic Aboriginal Council.

New Edition of the English-language Roman Missal

Plenary2011_2The first day of the Plenary also saw the official launching of the new English-language edition of the Roman Missal for Canada, which has been published by the CCCB Publications Service. Bishop Morissette as the President of the Conference presented the second copy of the Missal to be printed to Archbishop López Quintana. The first copy that was printed will be presented to the Holy Father by the new President of the Conference during the annual visit to Rome in early November. 

Bishop Morissette pointed out that the preparation and printing of the new Canadian English-language edition of the Roman Missal involved many people and services over many days and nights of work. This included the invaluable collaboration of Canadian Bishops and their dioceses, the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, the English Sector Commission for Liturgy and the Sacraments as well as the National Liturgy Office, and the Conference’s Publications Service. The CCCB President thanked suppliers and staff for working with the CCCB Executive and making it possible for the Missal to be delivered a month earlier than originally scheduled.

The new edition of the Missal becomes obligatory on the First Sunday of Advent, 27 November 2011, at all English-language celebrations of the Mass in Canada that follow the Roman Rite. That same day, no matter what language the celebration is in, all Eucharistic celebrations of the Roman Rite in the country are also obliged to follow the revised liturgical norms approved by the Holy See and the Bishops of Canada, unless the celebration uses the “extra-ordinary form” of the Latin Mass and the 1962 edition of the Missale romanum.

About 75 Bishops from across the country are participating in the Plenary Assembly, which is reviewing pastoral activities of the past year and also provides them a forum in which to share their experiences and insights on the life of the Church and on the major events that shape society.