PODCAzT 135: Encyclical Letter “Lumen fidei” – AUDIO files of entire encyclical

In my desire to get my ears and mind around the new encyclical, Lumen fidei, of Benedict XVI and Pope Francis, to sort the “voices” and get to know the trajectory of its arguments, I decided to read it aloud.

Wanna hear?  Some prefer to listen rather than to read and I know that quite a few of you use my PODCAzTs when driving, etc.

In reading, I did not read the footnotes, but I did include the intra-textual references, such as Scripture verses.  I read the abbreviation “cf.” as “confer”.  I did not include the brief sub-headings within each chapter.  However, I include the paragraph numbers so that you can quickly find your place in the text.

Please forgive errors. I read pretty much straight through and I had a few interruptions.  Furthermore, at a certain point my head was turning to mush!

I also found a couple typos in the text!

Also, since moving, I don’t have a good physical recording location, with decent acoustics and my table/desk situation is a complete disaster, so it is hard to get the microphone well-situated.  All those things aside, however, I hope these files will be useful.

I have a file each for the introductory section and the four chapters.

There are times when the “voice” is entirely that of Benedict.  At other times I think I can hear a new voice speaking, that of Francis, especially when touching on certain themes.  Can you?


I had a note from Libreria Editrice Vaticana asking me to remind you that Liberira Editrice Vaticana has the copyright to the text of Lumen fidei and that you may not reproduce or sell Lumen fidei.  Their exact text to me:

La invitiamo per questa volta, ad inserire come referenza il copyright Libreria Editrice Vaticana e che la riproduzione e la vendita sono vietate.

So, don’t sell the text to anyone.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Benedict XVI, Francis, Our Catholic Identity, PODCAzT, The Drill, Vatican II and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. acardnal says:

    Thank you Father Z. I “see” this has downloaded successfully in iTune. Will listen to it on Monday.

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  3. johnnyDmunoz says:

    Niiiiice! This is what I’ve been looking for. Nothing fancy, just current English translations on what the Super Pontiff is saying. I would love to have more of this with his public addresses, this is priceless. Great service provided!

    Side note… I feel like I am at point to seek a spiritual advisor/director. I am in the Flint, MI area, would anyone have any suggestions? Do I just call people? My parish doesn’t have a steady priest so that makes it a bit more rough. I am willing to drive distance and kick in some ducats for his help.

    Pray for me and I will pray for you…

  4. Vecchio di Londra says:

    Father, as you say, cf in such an academic text would normally mean ‘confer’, i.e. ‘compare’ – compare the example or text quoted or cited with a different text that casts light on it. In English also phrased as ‘see also’ and in German ‘siehe auch’ or ‘vergl.’
    But here, reading through the text and footnotes, it seems obvious that what is intended is not ‘cf.’ but ‘vide’ (meaning ‘See’) – as in each case the text cited in the footnote is obviously the source of the quotation in the body of the text. But in a footnote this word/abbreviation would be conventionally redundant. Otherwise Ph.D theses would be even longer, as it would appear in ever footnote :-)
    In fact it looks as if the ‘cf’ is not actually needed at all. A footnote gives the source: no further prefix is needed.
    We know that a lot of this encyclical was based on texts by Pope Francis’s predecessor Benedict XVI (just as Benedict based the second part of his first encyclical on unfinished writings of John Paul II. I wonder if Pope Benedict hand-wrote or typed his texts with footnotes actually in the main body of the text, say in brackets? (in which case he’d need to use a ‘s.’ or ‘vide’ to make clear that he intended a footnote).
    Only the editor knows the answer to this.
    It occurs to me that Justin and Irenaeus and Clement – and Latin Patristics in general – have always been meat and drink to the learned Benedict, and – (perhaps?) – less so to Francis. So the encyclical might be far more ‘Benedict through Benedict’ than we imagine?? And that might explain its substantiality, and its curiously Benedictine focus.

    [Sifting the options, I just chose “confer”.]

  5. RafkasRoad says:

    Fr. Zuhlzdorf,

    Good work, Fr., especially in light of your less than satisfactory recording environment. Let us pray for Fr. that something far more suitable for his needs re accommodation becomes available in future.

    On a side note, I have listened to your work on occasion over the years and am very impressed with your abilities as a reader/narrator. Can I shang-hai you to serve as my reader for my B.Theol Honours programme????? :-) [I had given some thought to doing reading for the blind.]

    On a serious note, let me be the first to say that all the common garden variety text to speech assistive technology software out there e.g. Freedom Scientific’s ‘JAWS’ (Job Access with Speech), G. W. Micro’s ‘Window Eyes’ and Serotec Corporation’s SA To Go and System Access, whether one is using Dectalk, Elloquence or even Neospeech synthesized speech (Neospeech is virtually human quality) all absolutely destroy latin!! though Serotek Corporation have developed speech packs for a huge range of languages (including the monumentally difficult task of creating two language pacs for the speech output of Chinese characters – including correct tonality, to serve Cantonese and Taiwanese mandarin speakers – synth quality is crap but the fact they’ve cracked this is incredible) nobody can provide a decent Latin language pack!!!! (now this would also require encoding within webpages etc to enact the Latin language pack if latin is intersperced with English, for instance; good webpage writers already do this with some French and Spanish language pages that have one or both of English and said language)

    So, good Fr., how would you like to negotiate with the thoughtful folk over at Serotek Corporation and friends to develop either a good pronounciation pack for existing speech options or create a new Neospeech voice to go with it??? Just imagine it, the dulcid tones of Fr. Z. reading not only his page, but everything else from other esteemed Catholic blogs to the National Schismatic Reporter, the ‘bitter pill’ (now I’m just being cheeky) Wikke pages, email, nasty Microsoft error messages and everything in between!! [They can contact me.]

    Sorry…back on track again…those of us who use text to speech to read the screen need a good latin pack!! Those lucky enough to have a refreshable Braille display fair better, but decent speech so we can hear decent speech renditions of the printed word, especially for learning latin prayers would be excellent.

    once this is done, then we can strong-arm my Maronite overlords to pull their collective finger out and do the same for our own liturgical language…think the Immaculate heart of Mary will well and truly have triumphed before this’ll ever happen…:-)

    Just putting the thought out there for Fr. Z., and other similarly formed Fr.’s who might also be up to the task.


    Aussie Maronite.

  6. johnnyDmunoz says:

    I didn’t realize you were the narrator. What a great job.. Your zeal and nonstop work ethic is very impressive. I thank God for people like you.

  7. johnnyDmunoz says:

    Thought it was Laurence Fisburne…


    [I get that all the time. o{];¬) ]

  8. anna 6 says:

    Thanks so much Fr. Z. …this is great!

  9. TC says:

    Watch out, Father! You may soon be hearing from USCCB copyright trolls.
    Your fellow blogger/New Evangelist, Brandon Vogt made Lumen Fidei available in Kindle, epub and mobi and was hit with takedown notices from the USCCN and the Vatican, see:

  10. I was just going to mention the same thing, TC.

    And it’s not just the USCCB. The Vatican of late has been very aggressive in dealing with perceived copyright infringements, with Brandon and with others.

    Without explicit written permission to use this material, a person could be asking for trouble.

  11. Indulgentiam says:

    Can. 828 It is not permitted to reprint collections of decrees or acts published by some ecclesiastical authority unless the prior permission of the same authority has been obtained and the conditions prescribed by it have been observed.

    I don’t think that they will bother Fr. Z as he is a Priest. But I honestly don’t see anything wrong with the Vatican protecting what it publishes. Wish they’d done that long before now, starting with the Bible.

  12. Janol says:

    I don’t use iTunes and I’m not able to download the Encyclical, it only opens to play in a new window. I’d like to be able to put in a folder to play in my mp3 player. Is there any way to do so without using iTunes? Thanks.

  13. Janol says:

    Okay, downloaded the audio files. Thank you Father for these!

  14. mrshopey says:

    I don’t like the way they treated Brandon. I do not like the parchment looked and was happy when I had the option to download. The way it was handled reminded me more of a business than the body of Christ….just saying.

  15. jameeka says:

    Thank you very much, Fr Z

  16. Alan Aversa says:

    Wow, Deo gratias!
    Do you have audio recordings of other encyclicals, Fr. Z?

    [I believe I do. I remember at least doing Mortalium animos.]

  17. Traditium says:

    I have a long trip today. Excellent. Multas gratias vobis ago.

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  20. pewpew says:

    @johnnyDmunoz I’d recommend finding a home of celibate opus dei members and asking them. They’re probably spread pretty widely over there in the US, and they’re a traditional group completely loyal to the church, though almost never have the TLM. They do normally celebrate the NO traditionally in latin though. Providing spiritual guidance is kind of their thing. A lay member of the opus dei gives me spiritual guidance, but they also have priests doing that.

  21. Pingback: Lumen Fidei Audio is Free Too | Spero Laus

  22. rummelhoff says:

    Thank you very much, Fr. Z. Excellent recording.

    I have linked to this post on my own site where Lumen Fidei may be downloaded in various formats. I hope that many will read or listen to Lumen Fidei and be prompted to read Benedict’s encyclicals. The documents of the Church are too ignored by the laity; maybe greater accessibility will help to change that.

  23. JacobWall says:

    I can’t get these recordings to work. For some reason, when I click on “Download,” it just opens in another tab, but clicking on the play button does nothing. I tried opening the address (as opened in “download”) in VLC media player; it plays the first 10 seconds and then cuts off. Does anyone have a tip on how to make this work?

    Has anyone else had a problem?

    (I’m using Chromium in Linux [Xubuntu].)

  24. JacobWall says:

    Fixed. I downloaded Firefox. Plays perfectly in the browser, downloads perfectly! (Chrome, considering it’s backed by Google, has some strange glitches.) Thank you Fr. Z for these wonderful recordings!

  25. JacobWall says:

    Actually, the first one cuts off before 5 minutes. But since I downloaded it, I can just listen in a media player. Thank you again, Fr. Z.

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