Feria Quarta

Dear Reader,

I laughed a bit when I read this first sentence from the Vatican Insider, a famous “inside scoop” on things happening in Rome by Andrea Torinelli. This was the first sentence of a piece on the, God-willing, immanent reconciliation of the SSPX to full communion with the Catholic Church:

The response sent to the Vatican on 17 April by Bishop Bernard Fellay will be examined in the next few days by the cardinal and bishop members in Ordinary Session of the Congregation of the Doctrine for the Faith, commonly known as Feria Quarta….

The bit at the end might just be a bad translation, but is rather funny if you understand what the bold “Feria Quarta” means. A “feria” is Latin for “weekday,” with “Sabbato” for Saturday and “Dominica” for Sunday in ecclesiastical Latin.  Feria quarta is, as the number attached to it indicates, the “fourth” weekday – namely, Wednesday (as the fourth from Sunday).

So, in other words, the piece is claiming that the official title for an ordinary meeting of the CDF is “Wednesday.” That’s just silly.

The moral of the story: a little Latin knowledge can stop you from making yourself look like a fool in the media.

What they mean is that the CDF ordinarily meets on Wednesdays for their general sessions. Ah, Roman efficiency to work one day during the week. Now we know why it takes the CDF so long to get around to things like censoring renegade theologians – they’re just out for gellato on Feria Quinta thru Feria Tertia!


Yours in Christ,

Br. James Dominic, OP

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