Thursday, March 14, 2013

Yet another reason Catholics use Latin...

...is it was the language everyone could speak.

Catholics today don’t use Latin much but it’s still the official language of the Church. All official documents are originally written in Latin and then translated into various other languages from there, the Mass used to be celebrated exclusively in Latin, the new Pope’s name was announced in Latin, and so on. Why does the Church insist on using this dead language?

Latin became the Church’s language in the first few centuries because if you were “civilized” then you knew Latin. If you could read (and less than 10% of people could) then you could read Latin. Latin was the most accessible language of the day so it made perfect sense to use it. Some folks claim that the Church used Latin in the middle ages to make sure only priests could read the Bible. History shows the opposite is true; Latin was the most useful language for many centuries of the Church’s life.

This is yet another reason Catholics use Latin.

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