St. Peters

Vatican II:
Celebrating 50 years

October 25 - October 31

The first document discussed at the Second Vatican Council was the document on the Liturgy. Among the items that were suggested for the reform of the liturgy were:

One of the interesting voices in the deliberations was the first one who did not speak in Latin, but rather used French in his intervention, his Beatitude Maximos IV Saigh, Melkite Catholic Patriarch:

The almost absolute value assigned to Latin in the liturgy, in teaching, and in the administration of the Latin church strikes us from the Eastern church as strange [assez anormal]. Christ after all spoke the language of his contemporaries. . . . [In the East] there has never been a problem about the proper liturgical language. All languages are liturgical, as the Psalmist says, “Praise the Lord, all ye people.” . . . The Latin language is dead. But the Church is living, and its language, the vehicle of grace of the Holy Spirit, must also be living because it is intended for us human beings not for angels.

(as quoted in John W. O'Malley, What Happened at Vatican II, p. 136)


Vatican II