Latin Superiority???

Does it really exist? Are Latin Catholics in denial of it if it does exist?

I’ve gotten into arguments with various family members and they seem to think that no it does not exist and has never existed. They have virtually no knowledge of the East and think some of their customs are strange.

Up until Pope Pius IX, Roman superiority was de jure and de facto present in the Catholic Church. It was HH Pius IX who promised the ECC’s and the Monastic Western Rites in the US their own rite (overturning 1st Plenary Council of Boston canon 3, barring anything other than the roman missal).

Most Roman Church Catholics are simply unaware of the Eastern Catholic Churches in union, and many are unaware of the Orthodox. When confronted with Orthodox faithful, many presume the church considers them the same as protestants. (Which is untrue, but unless one is into canon law or aware of the actual teaching re the Orthodox… after all, Canon Law says they can receive the Sacraments in the Catholic Church, even without converting.)

Later popes continued to improve the status of the ECCs. Pius X created the separate jurisdictions in the west for the ECCs; Pius XI installed the promised bishops. Pius XI and Pius XII instrcted the ECC’s to retain/regain their traditions. Paul VI and the V II council made it quite clear that they were fully equal in dignity to the Roman Church, but HH Paul VI also relieved a Ruthenian Bishop for continued latinizations. (Said bishop was later mate a Roman Catholic auxiliary bishop.)

But, before that point, the actual written instructions made it quite clear that the purpose of the ECC’s was to slowly latinize the EO, with the partial exception of the Italo-Albanian and Maronite Churches. The Italo-albanians had bee subject to Roman hierarchy anyway. The Maronites generally had no clergy outside their traditional area.

Why any Latin would feel superior to Eastern Catholics when they abort and contracept at the rate of the national average, their priests are on the decline, few of their lay members attend Mass every Sunday, when their divorce rate is so high, when many abandon the faith altogether, and when many are very sympathetic to homosexual acts, is beyond me.

The Eastern Catholic Church might be smaller and have a shorter history, but sometimes true faithfulness is found in small numbers.

I’m not so sure it was de jure, but I agree it was de facto. In any case, let’s say that it was true after a certain point in history. (For the sake of brevity, I’ll use the so-called “great schism” as a time frame.) And the perception of same was true long after Pius IX. It wasn’t until PP Pius XI that it came to mean something in fact, and after that not again until Bl PP John XIII.


I went to Catholic grade and high school. I was taught that the EO is equal to Latin but with diffierent rites. I was taught that the OC is separated from Rome but they have valid apostolic sussession and valid seven sacraments. I always thought this was something all Catholics were taught. I guess I was wrong. I do not understand the superior attitude of some of the Latin- rite Catholics towards the OE and OC. It is very sad. We are all brothers and sisters in Christ.

Peace to all,


In the West there is Latin superiority because that’s the West’s traditional heritage and represents the height of our Western culture and civilization. It is the language that we are supposed to be using in the Latin rite mass in principle. But, the Roman Church has always have high regard and respect for the traditional languages and customs of the Eastern Churches as well even though she herself does not always use them. For the Eastern Churches Greek, Coptic, Syriac, Aramaic, and other ancient and traditional Eastern languages are the official languages for them that they use in their liturgies and documents. But, since in the Catholic Church, Rome holds primacy, then Easterners also have to use Latin to be able to consult the official authoritative Vatican documents whenever necessary. This is because the vernacular translations of documents are not always accurate, some things can also be lost in translation. The Church has always had diversity in languages, customs, and cultures which is why there are different rites to accommodate different ethnic groups and peoples. But, the most used language has admittedly been Greek. However, the Western Church has decided to adopt Latin and tweak it a little to be distinct from the secular usage. This process of Christianizing the Latin language started in North Africa I believe, particularly in Carthage.

Actually I was talking about the Latin Church, not the language it uses. I agree that Latin belongs in the West but the East should use their own traditional languages.

Maybe I’m in a mood today and it’s just me, but I find that whole spiel incredibly patronizing. :frowning:

The Eastern Catholic Church might be smaller and have a shorter history, but sometimes true faithfulness is found in small numbers.

Just what do you mean “The Eastern Catholic Church [has] a shorter history”?

It’s older than the Western Church. Most sees in the East ARE Apostolic sees, as they were founded by Apostles themselves!

Then I must also be in a mood, because it’s not just you who read it this way.

One could dare say that Christianity is an Eastern Religion! :wink:

In Christ,

I believe it is more common for Easterns to feel their rites are superior. People seem to think the Latin Rite needs to adopt Eastern customs such as “active participation”, when in reality, silent participation should be a dearly loved custom of the Latin Rite and should be preserved. People think that anything which is traditional to the Latin Rite is bad, and it should be more similar to the Eastern Rites (or even protestantism). In reality, both the Eastern and Western rites are equal and should be treated and cherished as such.

As far as I can see there is nothing superior, or even equal, or even worthwhile in the Latin Church. Once so proud it is now a pit of ugliness, stupidity, insipid theology, shallow piety, cowering effeminacy, intellectual vapidity, complete disjunction both from the fathers and even from its previous traditions up until the high middle ages. Its spirituality is aliturgical. It lacks any historical continuity or consistency. Its liturgics, symbology, architecture, iconography, et., etc., etc. are nothing but a confused cacophonous jumble of competing assertions, most of them so disordered as to be indescipherable as a coherent theology by any persons so unfortunate as to be trying to cultivate a true Christian spiritual life in union with the Church that Christ founded and the Apostles, bishops, martyrs, virgins, priests, confessors, and so many others labored and even died to preserve. Posited once by such eminent scholars as Stanley Jaki as having sown the seeds of natural scientific inquiry with its incarnational focus, the Latin Rite is not far and away the LEAST incarnationally focused of all the 22 rites of the Church. Once a Rite thought perhaps overly severe or dour, it is today described as the most 'spirited" or “energetic” or even “immature” of the liturgical practices claiming apostolic descent and authority.
Of course, I’ll give you Latins one thing, you do have Matthew 16:18, so if my observations and studies are correct, and I have seen neither evidence nor cogent argument as to why this is not so, it logical course of action is to blow my brains out rather than go Doxing.
Sorry to be so, as the catamites infesting this board incessantly say, “uncharitable”, but any air of superiority on the part of the Latins can only be due to either ignorance, or the converse, knowledge of their consummate, unmitigated inferiority versus the East.

What the…? How can you end such a post by asserting that you believe in equality of West and East? :confused:

**No, Latin superiority does not exist. Each rite is equal. If you are refering to the Pope’s authority, certainly he has authority to teach infallibly when he clearly intends to do so and has the authority to depose and select bishops. Certainly, I’m all for the autocephalous thing for the East, ordinarily they should choose their own bishops and use their own disciplinary laws, but in some rare circumstances the Pope might need to select or depose bishops for them.

Now, I’m not going to deny the fact that there are some ignorant or even intolerant Latins out there suggesting everyone should use the Latin mass and everyone should have the same disciplines, and customs, etc. But, those people do not represent the Latin Church.**

Wow, two patronizing posts from opposite sides in the same thread. Very sad. :frowning:

Note from Moderator:

The lack of charity already displayed in this thread and the understandable offense taken by its readers leads me to close it now before it becomes a battle of who is better and who is worse.

The OP may, if desired, start a thread detailing the particular struggles faced with family asking for guidance and/or support in productively and charitably dealing with her situation.

This thread is now closed. Thank you to all who charitably participated.

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