ROME, December 14, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – The English translation of the final document from the Synod on the Family that concluded on October 25 has been published nearly seven weeks after the publication of the original Italian version.
While grateful for the translation, Vatican experts suggest that the long wait for a translation was unjust both to the international community but also for the Synod Fathers themselves, most of whom were not fluent in Italian.
Monsignor Ignacio Barreiro, who for two decades was the Vatican liaison for Human Life International, told LifeSiteNews that Catholics should be thankful for the translation of the document into other languages. Until last week, the document was only available in Italian, but is now available in English, French, German, Portuguese, and Spanish.
“It is concerning, however, that for so many days the text of such an important document was available only in Italian, and not in other major languages.” It was also, he added, “unfair to the Synod Fathers that the text on which they had to vote was only available in Italian when only a minority of them are fluent in Italian.”
“It is surprising given all the resources of the Vatican,” said Monsignor Barreiro, the Director of the Rome office of HLI from 1998 till June of this year.
At a Vatican press conference during the Synod, Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput indicated that he and other Synod fathers had concern over the fact that the definitive version of the final report would be in Italian. Those who do not speak Italian would be required to vote based on a translation, and translations of Church documents have not always been accurate, he noted.
Cardinal Burke criticized the final document, especially paragraphs 84-86 as being “misleading” and lacking in clarity on the indissolubility of marriage. Despite the many good aspects of the document, critics say it also is weak on homosexuality and parental rights.