ad hoc translations

Some say that Catholics should only read approved translations, or that no one should publish a translation without approval of the Church.

Many theologians and Biblical scholars, when they need a quote from a passage in the Bible, will make an ad hoc translation. They do not quote from the RSV or NAB or JB or other versions. Instead, they look to the Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic, or Latin text and translate it for the particular article or book that they are writing. Such ad hoc translations are found in very many works by very many theologians and scholars, and they lack the approval of the Church.

The rule that no one can publish any translation of the Bible without approval in effect makes all of these works against the rules. If the claim is made that such ad hoc translations are exempt from needing approval because they are not the whole Bible, then what about a translation of just one Testament, or one set of books, or one book, or a few chapters (etc.)? And there is nothing in Canon Law to distinguish a partial translation from a whole translation.

There should be no provision of Canon Law prohibiting the faithful from publishing a translation of the Bible, in whole or in part, unless it is approved.

This entry was posted in Scripture. Bookmark the permalink.