Caritas in veritate

BTW… I understand that the Latin text for the Holy Father’s encyclical Caritas in veritate is ready.

Hopefully it will be made public soon.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. mvmattke says:

    First! hehe
    By the way… What about the MY pontificate thing? What was that? So weird… And why take so long to publish the latin version? Is that normal?

    [No idea what that meant…]

  2. Agnes says:

    I think he meant it’s odd that the Church, whose official language is *not* Portuguese, would take so long to post stuff in Latin.

  3. Is the Latin text the authoritative text? Is Latin the original language of an encyclical, or does the Pope write it in his native tongue and then have it translated into Latin?

  4. Jono says:

    Yes, the Latin is the authoritative version. Other versions are often revised in light of the Latin. Since Latin is a mostly dead language, the meanings of words do not change as much as they do in living languages. From what I understand, the Holy Father writes the original in German.

    Also, I thought I heard that the guy who is basically in charge of the Latin translations for the Vatian was out on vacation, sabbatical, or something of the sort. From what Fr. Z. has posted, I assume he has returned.

  5. Trevor says:

    The authoritative edition is whichever on appeared in AAS (which I think is in Italian). We say Latin is authoritative for the Missal, because that’s the typical edition. However, I’m not aware of any law that says the authoritative edition of any document must be in Latin (see Canon 8 of the 1983 CIC).

    In regards to which language the in which the Pope writes, it depends. I suppose when writing personal stuff (such as encyclicals), he uses his best languages (German and Italian), and then everything is . Date to day operations are done in Italian. For this particular encyclical, much of it was committee work and I suppose it was written entirely in Italian.

  6. Gabriella says:

    Latin is still the official language of the Church, isn’t it?

  7. robtbrown says:


    The Acta are published in Latin. There is a supplement pertaining to the laws of Vatican city that is in Italian.

    Any authoritative pontifical text–signed by the pope–is in Latin. Of course, that raises a question about the catechism, which was written in French (after having been begun in Latin): By the Apostolic Constitution the pope promulgated a document which had not yet been produced–the Latin version came later and was an Italian translation of the French text.

  8. robtbrown says:

    What about the MY pontificate thing? What was that? So weird… And why take so long to publish the latin version? Is that normal?
    Comment by mvmattke

    The Latin says Pontificatus Nostri. Unfortunately, most of the translations use the 1st person singular, but some simply omit the possessive pronoun.

  9. Mike Morrow says:

    mvmattke wrote: “What about the MY pontificate thing? What was that? So weird…”

    Even more bizarre than those grossly tangential comments is the writer not noticing that the Vatican has used first person singular (English: “my pontificate” rather than “our pontificate”) for the translation of the closing line for *every* encyclical since JP II’s first in 1979, in all languages for which a translation is provided. *Thirty* years! *All* languages!

    Not so weird.

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