I read a small article on a parish bulletin few weeks ago. The article written by Pastor Ignotus discussed about the Latin word ‘ut’ which example can be found on the Prayer after Communion for the Second Sunday of the Ordinary Time. In Latin, the prayer is
Spiritum nobis, Domine, tuae caritatis infunde,ut, quos uno caelesti pane satiasti,
auna facias pietate concordes.
While in English, it was translated into
Pour on us, O Lord, the Spirit of your love,
and in your kindness
make those you have nourished by this one heavenly Bread
one in mind and heart.
The ‘ut’ word here was translated into ‘and’ in English; while the correct translation is supposed to be ‘so that’.
So, what’s the fuss about it?
It may look like a mere debate, like literature scholars arguing on word usage precision. However, as Ps Ignotus explained, not only does the translation alter the exact translation but also change the whole meaning of God’s loving act in the prayer.
I am not a scholar, but let’s have a look through my perspective as a layman.
Pour on us, O Lord, the Spirit of your love, ‘and’ in your kindness..
In the current English translation, the ‘and’ creates a separation between the Holy Spirit and God’s kindness. We pray for the Holy Spirit, the sign of his love. However, we then ask for his kindness for the blessing of unity of mind and heart. In my opinion, it creates a separation between the Holy Spirit and God’s kindness.
Pour on us, O Lord, the Spirit of your love, ‘so that’ in your kindness..
Let’s look at the literal translation. In this translation, there is a unity between the Holy Spirit and God’s kindness. Moreover, it clearly states that the Holy Spirit comes from God’s kindness; which then is emphasised as God’s Love. It clearly shows that the Holy Spirit is God’s loving sign. Love and kindness may a have different literal meaning. Nevertheless, they point out to common goal: to give something precious to the loved ones.
Holy Spirit is the sign of God’s love to us. After Jesus ascended into Heaven, the Holy Spirit comes. God never leaves us alone. We received this precious gift through our baptism, and strengthen through Confirmation. God exercises His Infinite Love through the Holy Spirit. He dwells and works within us.
Yet, God does not stop here. He also invites us to share His love to others. Through the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, we are able to extend the love of God to other people. However, it depends on how we accept this calling and how we want to co-operate with Him. The Holy Spirit is not a magical tool. Love can grow if each side responds positively. God has started His move first, now it is up to us to respond.
© Christian Rosario