Vatican City, Feb 5, 2008 / 02:00 pm (CNA).- Today the Vatican's Secretary of State issued the anticipated changes to the prayer for the Jews used in the Good Friday Liturgy celebrated according to the Roman Missal of 1962.
This new prayer, which is to be used this Lent, is a simple prayer for the Jewish people, that they may discover the salvation brought by Jesus. The previous version was regarded as offensive by some Jewish organizations.
The version in force until today did not contain the reference to the Jewish people as "perfidious" because it was suppressed by Blessed Pope John XXIII. However, the prayer found in the Roman Missal approved by Pope St. Pius V, still requested that God take "that people away... from their darkness" and liberate them from "their blindness," a text inspired by one of the letters of St. Paul.
The new formula announced today by the Secretary of State reads:
Let us also pray for the Jews that God our Lord should illuminate their hearts, so that they will recognize Jesus Christ, the Savior of all men.
Let us pray. Let us genuflect. Rise.
All-powerful and eternal God, you who wish that all men be saved and come to the recognition of truth, graciously grant that when the fullness of peoples enters your Church all of Israel will be saved.
Through Christ Our Lord, Amen.
The official statement reads as follows:
"In reference to the norms included in the Motu proprio “Summorum Pontificum”, from July 7, 2007, regarding the possibility of using the later version of the Missale Romanum, previous to the Second Vatican Council, published in 1962 with the authority of Blessed John XXIII, The Holy Father Benedict XVI has established that the "Oremus et pro Iudaeis" from Good Friday's Liturgy included in the Missale Romanum will be replaced by the following text:
Oremus et pro IudaeisUt Deus et Dominus noster illuminet corda eorum, ut agnoscant Iesum Christum salvatorem omnium hominum.Oremus. Flectamus genua. Levate.
Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, qui vis ut omnes homines salvi fiant et ad agnitionem veritatis veniant, concede propitius, ut plenitudine gentium in Ecclesiam Tuam intrante omnis Israel salvus fiat.
Per Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.