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Why in Latin?

With the exception of the Mass readings, our liturgy is celebrated in Latin. Many of the texts in the Latin liturgy are very ancient. Some of them are over 1,500 years’ old. They are real doctrinal and literary gems, honed by centuries of unbroken use. The same can be said of Gregorian chant: its melodies are often more than 1,000 years' old and were composed specially to enhance the Latin texts, which are mostly drawn from the Bible.

We regard the Latin liturgy and Gregorian chant not just as treasures for the Church but also for the whole of humanity. To preserve and keep alive this treasure, it does not seem to be asking too much to spend a few months learning Latin. Moreover, we acquire great familiarity with these texts after a few years’ use.

Celebrating the liturgy in Latin has the added advantage of creating a special atmosphere. Just as there is a special place to encounter God (the church), a special moment (the offices), and special clothes (a cowl or alb), so too there is a special language: Latin. Guests who take part in our liturgy are often sensitive to the sacred atmosphere created by Latin. We leave our surrounding secular world to enter God's world, joining the angels to take part in the liturgy of heaven. It goes without saying that this initiative comes from God, who willed to be one with us in Jesus Christ. In the liturgy, heaven and earth are united. Our daily life, in all its practicalities, is thus truly sanctified by the liturgy.