Latin… making a comeback?


From a reader:


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    Optime! Do I see hyssop growing in the background of the picture?
    Iacobus M

  2. Giuseppe says:

    I had 4 years of Latin at a Jesuit high school, post Vatican II, and I never once read a single portion of the mass or the Vulgate. Biggest wasted opportunity ever. Way too much Caesar, though.

  3. Hank Igitur says:

    Lava currum meum!

  4. KosmoKarlos says:

    Must be hard to give a carwash with only an aspergillum…

  5. RafqasRoad says:

    its obviously not making a comeback in the Catholic primary school attatched to the church over the river; the senior class that attended Mass this morning provided a little ‘rock ‘n roll’ ditty; rather, two of them, towards the end of proceedings – and canned ‘houganesque’ music while they and some of us regulars were filing up to receive our Lord. Please forgive me for stage murmouring ‘this is the house of god, not a rock concert’…

    There is so much amazing contemporary liturgical music and hymnity they could have used – not only our musical patrimony but fantastic modern sacred music that is RARELY heard in Mass – did these 10 and 11 year olds even fully understand what they were participating in??? This sort of thing NEVER went on at the Maronite school back in Sydney – the children learnt and sang with great gusto the hymnity of the rite with not a ‘rock ditty’ in sight!! Children deserve the best!! they don’t deserve dumbed down pulp!! And Fr. R. is such a good priest – how’d it happen on his watch???

    All I can do is pray for patience for myself and forgiveness for my upset, along with praying for the class and its teacher that better is possible and accessible to children. So very very sad. What can I do to better things; I tip my hat to the homeschool families who attend this masss also; in them is the church’s future me thinks.

  6. Gratias says:

    We’ve come a long way, baby. Six years ago most of us would not have understood the joke.

  7. Imrahil says:

    Dear @Giuseppe, that should not necessarily be different in this respect. I agree that way too much Caesar may mean that you could have read much of great other authors in the meantime.

    As for the Vulgate and the Missal, when you’re through classical Latin in school, reading them with understanding – and without always making sentence constructions – should be no further problem. They are kind of easy, language-wise. Which I don’t mean deprecatorily, more along the lines of lovely simplicity. Which reminds me that it was great, great fun when in our Latin class we shortly touched on mediaeval Latin poetry. Meum est propositum, etc.

    So, more than the Bible, I’d find it more important for a Latin class to read De finibus. You won’t read it otherwise, and it makes great philosophy, it even reminded me of scholasticism (along the “put value on all sides of the debate and decide for Aristoteles” line).

  8. Gregg the Obscure says:

    Sadly that doesn’t look like hyssop in the background. If the car is that dirty again come late summer, it could be parked in my driveway next to three nice big fragrant (like root beer, but with less vanilla and more licorice) hyssop plants.

  9. Darren says:

    @Giuseppe says: I had 4 years of Latin at a Jesuit high school, post Vatican II, and I never once read a single portion of the mass or the Vulgate. Biggest wasted opportunity ever. Way too much Caesar, though.

    I had two years at a Jesuit HS (graduated 1987)… and other than, at the beginning of Latin I where at the start of every class we all prayed the Pater Noster and Sancte Petri Ora Pro Nobis (might give a clue as to the school), I don’t recall a single part of the Latin having anything to do with the church, the Liturgy, etc… …but I do remember that Gallia est Provincia!

  10. LadyMarchmain says:

    Gratias, yes! True! and all thanks to Holy Father Emeritus, Benedict XVI. Let’s continue to pray for him.

  11. OrthodoxChick says:


    I’m in the same boat as you. Even graduated the same year. Two years of latin at a RSM (Sisters of Mercy) high school and other than praying the Pater Noster and Ave Maria at the beginning of class, it’s now been so many years, I may as well never have studied it. And there was only a reference in passing that there had been a Mass in latin at one time in the Church.


  12. OrthodoxChick says:


    Definitely true! Heck, up until finding Fr. Z.’s blog about a year and a 1/2 ago, I would not have understood the joke. It’s this blog that led me to search out an EF Mass.

    God Bless Papa Benedict and Fr. Z.!

  13. Ignatius says:

    Amplius lava me!

  14. Sonshine135 says:

    Deo Gratias!

  15. AlexandraNW says:

    (ridete alta voce)

  16. majuscule says:

    The popularity of the pope’s tweets in Latin:

    More followers than his tweets in Arabic, Polish or German!

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