Vinaya question about the sima

Where I’ve been living for the last seven years the local custom is that Pātimokkha reciter doesn’t get to recite the Pubbakicca at all. Instead the two seniormost monks will recite it catechetically, with the number two monk asking the questions in a long-drawn-out sing-song voice and the senior thera then answering in a loud staccato bark.

If there is no chance of you bringing it up in an ordinary way, I would say just follow their custom. And you know, I don’t think you are actually lying. At bhikkhu pācittiya 1, lying is defined as deceiving another, which you are not. Everyone knows what is going on, and presumably not many, if anyone, will understand the Pali.

Agreed. It’s best to just use non violent communication and polite speech, along with the book of vinaya, to the senior monk in charge and ask him about this or that particular rule. Let them save some face.