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 CNS Story:

BISHOPS-PSALTER Nov-12-2008 (390 words) xxxn

Bishops choose Revised Grail Psalter for liturgical use in U.S.

By Nancy Frazier O'Brien
Catholic News Service

BALTIMORE (CNS) -- The U.S. bishops chose the Revised Grail Psalter produced by the monks of Conception Abbey in Missouri over the Revised New American Bible translation of the Book of Psalms for liturgical use in the United States.

The vote at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' meeting in Baltimore Nov. 12 was 203-5 in favor of accepting a recommendation of the USCCB Committee on Divine Worship to adopt the Grail Psalter for use in all liturgical settings. The decision also must be confirmed by the Vatican.

There was little debate before the vote and no amendments could be made to the translated psalms.

Bishop Arthur J. Serratelli of Paterson, N.J., chairman of the Committee on Divine Worship, said the Revised Grail Psalter also had been recommended over the Revised New American Bible version by the Committee on Doctrine's Subcommittee on the Translation of Scripture Text and by the now-defunct music subcommittee of what was then called the Committee on the Liturgy.

Currently the Grail Psalter, published in 1963, is used in the Liturgy of the Hours, the daily prayers that bishops, priests and deacons are required to pray daily. The NAB Psalter, which dates to 1970, is in use in all other liturgical books in the United States.

The Revised NAB Psalter, developed in 1991, was rejected by the USCCB and the Vatican in the revision of the Lectionary for Mass in 2000, Bishop Serratelli said.

He said there were four reasons that his committee was recommending the Revised Grail Psalter over the Revised NAB version:

-- "It has been recommended by musicians for its musicality" and can easily be sung, chanted or recited.

-- It is faithful to the Hebrew text.

-- It is already "somewhat familiar" to those who pray the Liturgy of the Hours.

-- "While being faithful to Hebrew imagery and anthropology, it is critically aware of the Christological references."

The Revised Grail Psalter already has been adopted by all English-speaking episcopal conferences except the United States and Canada, Bishop Serratelli said.

The Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments is currently reviewing a request from the bishops' conference of Kenya to use the Revised Grail Psalter in the revised Lectionary for Mass, he added.


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