John Lilburne noting differences between the Institutio Generalis Missale Romanum, General Instruction of the Roman Missal, of 2000 and 2002.



About John Lilburne

Roman Missal


19 March discussion

22 March 2002 Press Conference discussion

Ministers in Masses


2002 General Instruction different to 2000

My copy of the new Roman Missal was delivered today, 4 April 2002.

I am surprised to find that the 2002 General Instruction is different to the 2000 General Instruction (published as ISBN 88-209-7012-0). The impression I had from media reports is that they were the same and that it had just taken a long time for the printing of the full missal.

Both have 399 paragraphs, but the 2000 General Instruction had 160 footnotes, the 2002 has 165. Some footnotes have been combined, such as 52 and 53 in the 2000 General Instruction are now in Footnote 52.

The text has also changed. For example in paragraph 42 on postures I notice three changes in the wording:


lege liturgica Institutione generalis
suam privatam
adstantium participantium

There are changes in the instructions on the distribution of communion by the acolyte in n. 287. The 2000 Study Translation had:

If Communion of the chalice is given by intinction, then the communicant, while holding the paten under the chin, approaches the priest who holds the chalice and at whose side stands the minister holding the vessel with the sacred particles. ...

This was a translation of:

Si Communio calicis fit per intinctionem, communicandus, patinam sub ore tenens, accedit ad sacerdotem, qui calicem tenet et ad cuius latus sistit minister qui vas cum sacris particulis sustinet.

It was a confusing instruction, because it contradicted n.191 which had that the acolyte "holds the chalice when communion is given by intinction." I pointed this out in Ministers in Masses, n. 287. The 2002 General Instruction n. 287 removes this contradiction with the bold words changed:

Si Communio calicis fit per intinctionem, communicandus, patinam sub ore tenens, accedit ad sacerdotem, qui vas cum sacris particulis tenet et ad cuius latus sistit minister qui calicem sustinet.

Given that these changes have been made it is surprising that decree of promulgation was not changed. Page 7 of the new Roman Missal has Prot. N. 143/00/L dated 20 April 2000 and authorising the use of the new missal for "Sollemnitate Corporis et Sanguinis Domini anno 2000" (the solemnity of the Body and Blood of Our Lord year 2000). Changes seem to have been made since that are not explained.

With the changes, I am less certain whether the new liturgical laws came into force on the day of publication, 22 March 2002.

1714 Thu 4 Apr 2002 Update

Another significant change, the Sequence is to be before the Alleluia, not after it.

According to the 2000 Institutio Generalis Missalis Romani, n. 64:

The Sequence is optional, except on Easter Sunday and Pentecost. It is sung after the Alleluia.

This is an unofficial translation (which seems correct to me) of:

Sequentia, quae praeter quam diebus Paschae et Pentecostes, est ad libitum, cantatur post Alleluia.

But the 2002 General Instruction, n. 64 has:

... cantatus ante Alleluia

The Latin word "ante" means "before", while "post" means "after". So the changed instruction is that the Sequence is before the Alleluia, not after it.

Copyright J.R. Lilburne, 4 April 2002.


Other sites:

2000 Institutio Generalis in Latin

2000 discussion and promulgation notice by Reverend James Moroney of USCCB BCL