Friday, October 21, 2005

Latin lovers unite!

(ANSA) - Rome, October 21 - In a bid to stop Latin falling entirely into disuse, bishops meeting in the Vatican have proposed that the language be used for masses at major international events.

Bishops suggested that the Catholic Church's official language be used for the key prayers and rites in masses while homilies and readings from the bible should remain in the language of the host nation.

Read the complete article Bishopes ask Pope to save Latin from

I hope they push through with this and the Pope makes it a reality. The question then becomes if people are simply learning Latin prayers by rote or if they'll have any real understanding of the language itself. Personally, I'd like to see Latin taught in all Catholic schools. (Like that will ever happen...) After all, foreign language study makes for better students and what better language than the basis for the Romance (and a good portion of English) languages?

Use of Latin has been declining in the Catholic Church for many years. This synod is believed to be the first one in living memory in which it was impossible to set up a Latin-language working group because too few prelates spoke the language well enough.

Apart from in the opening address given by the Venice Patriarch, Cardinal Angelo Scola, Latin was hardly heard during the talks. When Scola started his speech, which was entirely in Latin, prelates had to reach for headsets in order to hear a translation.

Only one synod participant spoke Latin the whole time: the archbishop of Riga, Cardinal Janis Pujats.

The Cardinal-Archbishop of Riga has my admiration.

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