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    It is necessary to speak to society in the language that is natural for hearing – the Exarch of the Ecumenical Patriarch’s exarch on Gospel translation

    With each generation, with each period of development of any society, the language changes and there will be a need to address the public in a specific period of time in the language that will be natural to hear.

    This was noted by the Exarch of the Ecumenical Patriarch in Ukraine, Bishop Michael of Koman, in an interview with Radio Maria, commenting on the publication of the liturgical Gospel-Aprakos translated into Ukrainian from Greek.

    “When I read old translations, they have a special charm and grace. But in the end we understand that people don’t speak like that anymore. At the same time, we remember that the language of the New Testament was very simple in order to make it accessible to all population strata: both educated and illiterate. The main idea is to convey the gospel word in the simplest possible form, in the most accessible shape possible. It is clear that with each generation, with each period of development of society, the language changes and there will be a need to address the public in a specific period of time in the language that will be natural to hear. So that a person, listening to the word of the Gospel, feels that it’s not some archaic forms that are appealing to him but something that is a part of his life,” stressed Bishop Michael.

    According to the exarch, no translation is perfect. And if the exact term has not been invented in the language, then it must be created to convey the meaning.

    “No translation is perfect. This is development, this is history. I love the archaic words used in worship. If a certain, precise term has not been invented in the language, then it must be created to convey the meaning. And then explain to people what it means. On the other hand, if it is for the benefit of the Church, let’s remember that the fathers of the First Ecumenical Council developed it for the expression of divine truths. Certain words that existed may have meant something else. Then the fathers got together and decided: this word means this. It was difficult for everyone, everyone got used to it, but then it became so much part of the Church’s consciousness that it got into use,” the exarch said.

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