Pope Francis has decentralized authority over how the texts used in the Catholic Church’s liturgies are translated from Latin into local languages, moving most responsibility for the matter from the Vatican to national bishops’ conferences.
Pope Francis attends a national reconciliation prayer meeting at Las Malocas Park in Villavicencio, Colombia, Sept. 8. (CNS/Paul Haring)
In a motu proprio issued Sept. 9, the pontiff says he is making a change to the church’s Code of Canon Law so that the Second Vatican Council’s call to make the liturgy more understandable to people is “more clearly reaffirmed and put into practice.”
The motu proprio, given the title Magnum Principum, modifies two clauses of Canon 838. The rewritten clauses say simply that the Vatican is to “recognize” adaptations of Latin liturgical texts approved by national bishops’ conferences.