It seems that the Latin Church's concern has not been the reading of the
Bible per se, but the reading of unlawful vernacular translations of the
Bible, and reading and study without the guidance of the Church.
Pope Pius IV (1564), in the conviction that indiscriminate reading of
Bible versions did more harm than good (plus detrimenti quam
utilitiatis), would not allow laymen to read the sacred book except by
special permission of a bishop or an inquistor.
Clement VIII (1598) reserved the right to grant this permission to the
Congregation of the Index. Gregory XV (1622), and
Clement XI (in the bull _Unigentius_, 1713), repeated the conditional
Benedict XIV, one of the liberal popes, extended the permission to read
the Word of God in the vernacular to all the faithful,
yet with the provisio that the translation be approved in Rome and
guarded by explanatory notes from the writings of the fathers and
catholic scholars (1757).
----- Original Message -----
From: <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, December 27, 2000 8:07 PM
Subject: Re: canons on the study of the Bible
> Brother Alexis wrote,
> > >> you are aware that we have church canons forbidding the study of
> > bible by laity.
> When I asked for further information about this, he wrote,
> > I have never heard of a canon forbidding the study of the bible by
> > laity...
> I think I withdraw my questions, as this is becoming more confusing
> than less so.