"the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites ."
Another reason, besides accuracy, that Latin was to be retained
in the Church has to do with the universality of the Church.
Many folks, of previous generations, have remarked how wonderful
it was to be able to go to any Catholic Church (Latin Rite), anywhere
in the world, and have exactly the same Mass being celebrated.
This conveyed a deep sense of the universality of the Church-how
we are part of the world-wide Body of Christ, not just doing our
own little thing in our own little corner of the Kingdom. Things
in our generation are different in many ways, but maintaining
the use of some Latin in the Mass is one way of protecting that
rich expression of the universality of the Church and a constant
reminder to us, the members of the local expression of the Church,
that we are part of something so much greater than just our local
body, we are part of the great, world-wide Bride of Christ on
Another aspect of the value of Latin has to do with the more fundamental understanding of how familiar ritual can be used to bring us more and more deeply into the Mystery of God. Our contemporary society is big into novelty, quick-fix entertainment; so much is done with a do-it-quick-fast-food kind of approach. Sadly, yielding to this modern quest for entertainment, in many places the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass has deteriorated into an endless quest for new entertainment options-what novelties or new permutations can we introduce to catch and keep folks' attention? The Church has never had that approach to Liturgy, realizing that the regular repetition of familiar ritual, when the person actively cooperates with it, can have a far more profound and deep affect on the person than the much more surface results of a constant barrage of novelty. For example, take the "Alleluia." This part of the Mass, one of the most ancient examples of the Latin (from the Greek, from the Hebrew) in the Liturgy, is familiar and comfortable to us, and the solemn proclamation of the "Alleluia" at the Easter Vigil is one of the high points of the year for many folks. Think how much would be lost if a new expression or phrase were used to introduce the Gospel every week! But instead, when we sing this great Latin expression, we enter deeply into this wondrous praise of God that even now goes on before His Throne in glory. The same could be said for the "Great Amen." The chanting of these glorious expressions, as they have been proclaimed for almost two millennia by our brothers and sisters who have gone before us, is a wonderful vehicle for us to enter more deeply into the Mystery of God. As we make these timeless phrases our own, as we allow them to sink deeply into our hearts, we open the door to deeper and deeper Communion with the Holy One Whose presence we celebrate. It takes more work, more effort, more focus, more concentration, but the results are equally more rewarding: growing in our relationship with the One Who loved us first!