CHAPTER VI Latin Tongue, Official Language
Q. Why Is Mass said in the Latin tongue and not in the vernacular?
A. In the first place, That the service of God may be everywhere uniformly the same, secondly, That the same words and same prayers may be used in order to avoid the changes, to which all living languages are so much subject; thirdly, That the same language may be used over the whole Church, that the pastors of every country may understand one another, and that the people passing from one country to another may have no difficulty in joining at the public service, it being everywhere the same.
Q. Are not the people injured by having the public service in a language which they do not understand? A. By no means; for surely God understands all languages,—prayers will reach His Throne, no matter in what language they may be uttered; and as to the people, they have the prayers of Mass translated into their own tongue in their Prayer Books.
Q. Does not St. Paul say—1 Cor. chap. xiv, 19, “But in the Church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may instruct others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue?”
A. Yes; but St. Paul is speaking here of instruction, as is evident from the words—”That I may instruct others also;” And the [pg. 270] Catholic Church in all her sermons, private prayers, and instructions, addresses her children in a language which they do understand.
Q. Do not Protestants make frequent use of 1 Cor. xiv, against Catholics on this subject? A. Yes; but if Protestants would think before they speak, they would see that this chapter has nothing to do with the question. St. Paul, in the whole of this chapter, is reprobating the vain display of miraculous tongues in preachings, exhortations, or instructions, made by recent converts, more to show their gifts than to glorify God or edify the people.
Q. Can this chapter be turned against Protestants so as to support the Catholic practice?
A. Yes; in verse 5, St. Paul says—”For greater is he that prophesy than he that speak with tongues, unless perhaps he INTERPRET, that the Church may receive edification; now the Catholic service is interpreted for the use of all. Again, verse 13,—“Therefore he that speak by a tongue, let him pray that he interpret;” where speaking tongues is not found fault with, if interpretation follow. In verse 27,—“If any speak with a tongue,….let one interpret.” In fine, in verse 39, the Protestant argument is annihilated by the Apostle. “Wherefore, brethren, be zealous to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues.” [pg. 271]
Q. Is the Latin in reality an unknown tongue?
A. None but those who are very ignorant will venture to say that it is. In some countries it is still the vernacular tongue; the learned of every country are acquainted with it; and of all languages it is, at least to a certain extent, the most universally known.
the custom of not performing the service in the vernacular tongue
confined to the Catholic Church?
A. No; the Greek, Ethiopian, Indian, and Muscovite schismatics, say Mass in their ancient, and not in their modern tongues. The Syrians and Egyptians say Mass in Syriac, though Arabic be their vulgar tongue. Arabic is the language of the Melchites and Georgians; though they say Mass in Greek.
Q. Is there any other reason that the Mass should be said in Latin? A. The Mass is the one sacrifice of the whole Church, foretold by Malachi, as an offering to be made in every place under heaven: Hence, all Christians have, in the oneness and unchangeableness of the language in which it is offered up, a strict bond of union; unity is preserved by uniformity of rite.
Q. Is it necessary that all the people should understand every word used in the Liturgy? [pg. 272] A. Certainly not. It is only necessary that they should comprehend the nature of the action performed, and unite their intention and devotion with that of the priest.
Q. What do we find in the Jewish Church?
A. The Jews lost the use of the Hebrew language during the Babylonish captivity so entirely, that when Nehemias and Esdras read the Law from the Scriptures to the people they were obliged to interpret it, (Nehemias viii, 13.)
Q. What do you infer from this?
A. The Jews spoke Syriac; the Scriptures were not translated into that language until after the time of our Saviour; yet the Hebrew was still retained in the religious service of the Jews. Besides, from Levit. xvi, and Luke i, it is very evident that the people were not required to be even so near the priest as to he able to hear him; for they were not allowed to be even in the Tabernacle when he prayed for himself and the whole congregation.
Use of Vernacular In Worship Approved DEC 07, 1962
Over fifty years later, some Catholics believe the vernacular liturgy is not properly sanctioned. People are even in schism over such things? These people are in ERROR. Are there abuses? Regrettably! However, much like Martin Luther and his 95 thesis, these were all his opinion of a pastor priest. The council of Bishops headed by the VICAR of Christ did not agree. Luther appealed and lost that also. Like Luther, traditionalists are doing lots of barking, but lack substance.
The Hierarchical Church is Christ design, St Peter and St Paul, instituted the Saviours designs, countless Fathers could be quoted. People even call the Church the Conciliar Church, ignoring that in the earliest chapters of ACTS the Apostles in the new Testament record this Conciliar Church Tradition and in Scripture. They were acting just as the Old Testament elders had for millennia, going back to Moses. [see Priestly Hierarchy posted Jul23, 2019]
Quote of St Irenaeus from the EASTERN Church – “by indicating that tradition derived from the Apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successions of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church, on account of its preeminent authority [potiorem principalitatem].”
City is reporting this news story found on [ https://vaticaniiat50.wordpress.com/2012/12/10/use-of-vernacular-in-worship-approved/] Please note, the overwhelming number of votes cast reported below. Enough said! She is the reality of Our Holy Mother Catholic and Apostolic Church. Heretics may leave her to the detriment of their eternal and everlasting souls.
Use of Vernacular In Worship Approved: DEC 07, 1962
The use of the language of the people in the liturgy was voted broad approval in the first session of the Second Vatican Council.
This was revealed in a commentary, accompanied by ample quotations from the actual text, published in the Vatican City newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.
The commentary was written by Father Cipriano Vagaggini, O.S.B., liturgical scholar who is one of the “experts” appointed by Pope John XXIII to aid the work of the council.
The Benedictine priest, who is vice rector of Rome’s Pontifical Atheneum of St. Anselm, disclosed that the council Fathers voted to let such bodies as national and regional bishops’ conferences decide on the vernacular question. The decisions of these conferences need only confirmation by the Holy See.
Father Vagaggini’s article underlines point for point important elements of the preface and the first chapter of the “constitution” on the liturgy which were approved by the council Fathers on Dec. 7. There were 2,118 council Fathers present at that meeting. A total of 1,922 voted in favor of the text, 11 against, 180 in favor but with reservations, and 5 votes were void.
Vote Math [(1922+180)/(2118-5)] = 99.479%
That part of the constitution quoted in L’Osservatore which refers to the use of the vernacular is Article 36 of the text, which reads:
“The use of the Latin language, except by particular dispensation, is to be preserved in the Latin rites.”
But since the use of the vernacular very often can be very helpful to the people in the Holy Mass or in the administration of the sacraments and in other parts of the liturgy, a larger role is conceded to the vernacular especially in the lessons, instructions, in some prayers and in some chants, according to the norms laid down in the following:
“It will be the right of the territorial authority … consulting, if the case suggests this, the bishops of the neighboring regions having the same language, to determine the manner and use of the vernacular language, with the reservation that their acts must be approved, that is, confirmed by the Apostolic See.”
The constitution will also allow bishops in certain places to adapt the culture and traditions of their people to the liturgy, according to Article 37 of the text, which L’Osservatore quotes as follows:
“The Church, when it is not a question of the Faith or the common good, does not intend to impose, even in the liturgy, a rigid uniformity. Moreover, it respects and promotes the characteristics and gifts of various races and peoples. It looks favorably on everything in the customs of these people that is not inseparably bound up with superstition and error, and, if it can, protects and conserves them. Thus sometimes it admits these customs into the liturgy itself, provided they can be harmonized with the authentic liturgical spirit.”
Commenting on the general rules which will govern the Church’s public worship in the future, Father Vagaggini said that one of the most important elements is contained in Article 22 of the text of the constitution in which it is established that the bishops themselves may effect reforms in the liturgy. This privilege is granted, according to the text, “to the various kinds of competent territorial bodies of bishops, as lawfully constituted.”
The Benedictine theologian drew on the text of the document for a definition of the liturgy. He said:
“The liturgy appears as the exercise of the priestly office of Christ, in whom, by means of outward signs, the sanctification of man is signified and, in different ways, brought about, and at the same time the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ, Head and members, offers complete and public worship. …”
Father Vagaggini quotes the text as saying:
“The liturgy does not exhaust all the activity of the Church. …”
“Nevertheless, it is the summit toward which the actions of the Church tend and at the same time the font from which comes all its vigor.”
The principles upon which liturgical reform is to be based are then traced by Father Vagaggini in the four sections of the first chapter of the constitution. These are: general norms (Articles 22-25); norms based on the nature of the liturgy as a hierarchical and community action (Articles 26-32); norms based on the teaching and pastoral nature of the liturgy (Articles 33-36), and norms for adapting the liturgy to various cultures and traditions (Articles 37-40).
Concerning the section of the text dealing with the social character of the liturgy, Father Vagaggini traces these pivotal norms of reform:
— As far as is possible, the community form of the liturgy, with the attendance and participation of the congregation, is to be preferred to the individual or private celebration of liturgical service.
— Each participant in the liturgical drama plays all of his part and only that, and this pertains equally to the ministers, lectors, commentators and choir and people.
— The active participation of the people must be promoted, especially through the responses, acclamations and hymns, and this must be spelled out in the rubrics.
For this last point on this score, Father Vagaggini quoted from the text of Article 32 of the constitution: “In the liturgy, except the distinctions for liturgical office and honors due to civil authorities according to liturgical laws, there must be no regard for persons or conditions, either in the ceremonies or in external pomp.”
In this regard, the priest pointed to the practice in some countries of having various “classes” of funerals and weddings, and said the “intent of the Church” is to eliminate such things.
Daily indulgence: Invocation for the Conversion of Russia – An indulgence partial (300 days) (S.P. Ap., Nov 24,1924). RACCOLTA page 504.