Hi Venerable and Tilt,
:lamenting, wailing and gnashing of teeth:
You Mahayanists do have a hard time of it. Part of the problem with Western Mahayana it that it is either Zen or Tibetan Buddhism, each of which have serious problem when it comes to the Mahayana as a whole and to the Theravada in particular. Gawd only knows when some important of the Chinese stuff will get translated, either Agama or Mahayana.
To be honest with you, after reading Ven Analayo's article on 'Ancient Roots of U Ba Khin's meditation method', I'm quite excited by the vast raft of wisdom captured within the Chinese Agamas and commentaries. I'm hoping those translations will be sooner rather than later.
Caution: Fictional story based on a few facts approaching:
The most common texts used by Chinese Buddhism, maybe about a dozen of them, have already been translated scores of times each.
Every Chinese monk or nun who goes West seems to set up a groups calling themselves something like the "international buddhist translation institute" or something similar. Then, with the dear venerable in charge (who only speaks Chinese), their group of immigrant Chinese disciples will wrestle the text into English, or a close approximation. This is how the Central Asians did it in China for the first few centuries, too.
They give these to the local people who come to their temples. They read them, and sometimes try to chant them. But, due to the often times Chinglish translation, they tend to get confused, and think that Chinese Buddhism is kind of, well, weird.
On the other hand, some very clever university professors will take the same text, spend 30 years, and knock out a translation too. With the huge amount of critical footnotes, the sutra will become 5 times the size, and have a very nice introduction which gives you the whole gist that it is all made up, and the Chinese got it wrong.
The local people who got weirded out by the Chinese group's translation buys the scholar's book, and tries to read it. They are crushed - what, the Mahayana wasn't taught by the Buddha?!?! How could it be so?!?! They take both books to the second hand book store, and get $5.50 for them. They either continue by leaving the Chinese temple and going to Zen, because they won't be expected to read anything. Or, they go to the Tibetans, or the Theravadins.
That's kind of a joke, but also not really.
Some sneaking suspicion at the back of my mind, something which both delights and terrifies me at the same time, is that one day they won't be Chinese groups from Taiwan or Hong Kong or Malaysia, but the Buddhist Association of China will make some grandiose decision to "translate the entire tripitaka into English". Wow! We say, ain't dat wonderfool?!! Then, they'll do exactly the same, after finding some monastics in China with vaguely fluent English, and a bunch of loyal devotees, in the way that only China can - ie. centralized control of mass numbers of people - they'll knock out the whole Chinese tripitaka in a decade.
And not a single native English speaker will be able to make any sense out of it.
It needs western monastics and laity who are fluent in the languages and culture, and a lot of other resources, too.
Actually, much of the link which is missing to connect the two sides together, is not so much the Agamas or Mahayana, but all that "bodhisattva literature" of the early non-Mahayana schools. The Theravada has a lot of it too, but many seem to overlook it (deliberately or otherwise).