Within the living Tradition of the Church


In the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church it states:
19 How is Sacred Scripture to be read?
2) it must be read within the living Tradition of the Church
Please explain “within the living Tradition of the Church”.


We cannot simply pick up the Holy Bible and read it like a text book, a novel, or any other kind of literature. The Bible is a book OF the Church, therefore it must be interpreted THROUGH and BY the Church. We can’t read it “on our own” but rather, we are to put on the “glasses of interpretation” given us by the Fathers of the Church to help us.
I hope this helps :slight_smile:


We have to read with “the mind of the Church” - that is we must read Scripture in light of

  1. the ENTIRETY of Scripture (no proof texting or reading books as if they were only a collection of writings by various authors over many centuries

  2. the teaching of the Magisterium of the Church. The Church is like a teacher, the Bible like his textbook. If you had access to the Professor, would you only read the textbook without listening to his teaching? If you did, would you get as much out of it? Would you be more or less likely to misunderstand something?

A good Bible to get to help with this is the Catholic Study Bible put out by Ignatius Press. You can get the whole NT in one volume and several books of the OT are already done and out. The notes in this study Bible provide insights from the “living tradition of the Church.”


In addition to what others have said, the tradition of the Church is “living” because it is not something we have to find by sorting through thousand year old books, but is continually alive and with us now through the continuous teaching of the Church, which continually applies it to face new situations and challenges.




Pablope, Thank you for the website of Mr. Mark Shea!!! Great depth went into his writing of What is Sacred Scripture? I liked the following statement by Mr. Shea:
Sacred Tradition is the living and growing truth of Christ contained, not only in Scripture, but in the common teaching, common life, and common worship of the Church.:tada::tiphat::slight_smile:


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.