US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Was Jesus' blood shed "for all" or "for many"? Maybe there's a third option

By Scott Alessi | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

Among those who have struggled with the new translation of the Roman Missal, one of the most difficult changes to understand seems to be the switch in the Eucharistic prayer from saying that Jesus' blood was "shed for you and for all" to "for you and for many." Some argue that "many" is a more accurate translation while others feel that it distorts the essential message that the death of Jesus on the cross offered salvation to all, not just "many."

The issue is still being discussed in Italy. Reports the La Stampa newspaper's Vatican Insider:

In Italy a vote was held on the matter during the general assembly of the Italian Episcopal Conference (CEI) in Assisi, in November 2010. Here, 171 out of 187 individuals voted in favour of keeping “for all”. The main reason given was that in some languages “for many” seems to contrast with “for all” almost as if the universal call for salvation and Christ’s sacrifice were not intended for everyone.

According to La Stampa, biblicist Francesco Pieri has proposed an alternative. Instead of "for many," he suggests "for the multitude," which he argues is both an accurate translation and a solution that doesn't imply that the salvation of Jesus isn't open to everyone.

What do you think? Have you grown accustomed to hearing "for many"? Or do you still want the prayer to say "for all"? Would something along the lines of "for the multitude" be an acceptable solution, regardless of which side you're on?