You see it all over social media. Google Translate gets used to translate some familiar lines from English into another language. Spanish, French, Tagalog, Hindi, pick one.
Then used again to translate it back into English. And what comes out is very different.
The syntax is off. Phrases are out of order. Familiar words replaced by new ones. Maybe there’s some unintentional humor.
Usually it just sounds odd.
I bring this up, because if we’re used to the classic version of the Our Father that we pray at Mass, the NABRE version of the Our Father (in today’s Gospel) can sound like this is what someone did to the Lord’s Prayer.
Father, hallowed be your name,
your Kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread
and forgive us our sins
for we ourselves forgive everyone in debt to us,
and do not subject us to the final test.
So what do we do with something like this, something that sounds so odd?
We can reject it.
It lacks the charm of familiar things.
We can let it pass by.
It has no rhythm to help it stay with us.
Or, we can take a moment to think about what it’s saying. To let its very oddness unpack the Our Father for us.
Until its irregular lines and strange phrases crack the shell of familiarity. Renewing the prayer taught by Jesus.
So that the version we all know by heart can be again the source of grace that Our Lord meant it to be.