11 August 2008

Don't Misuse the Name of the Lord

It is one thing I cannot stand, since I became Catholic, and that is people who misuse the name of the Lord. I'm sure you will have heard many of your friends and colleagues exclaiming "Oh my G**" (I'm not even gonna write it, you will know what I mean) in so many situations. It is used extensively on TV, for example in the TV program 'Friends' there is a character called Janice. It was pretty much her 'catchphrase'. It makes me cringe. Very often I will point out when someone in my company has said something like this. Usually it is said out of habit, without any malice intended, although that is not a valid excuse. Even worse, is when the name of the Lord or the name of Christ is used as a curse word, that really upsets me.

This came to mind after I read a post on the Young Fogeys blog. It says that a letter has been sent out from Cardinal Arinze to presidents of Bishops' conferences around the world. Pope Benedict has recently approved a directive that the literal Hebrew pronunciation of the name of God should not be used in song or prayer.

This is the Tetragrammaton, the YHWH. I was told during my RCIA that it was written like this to indicate something that should not be said, to remind people not to mistakenly say the name of God. A fine rule to work by. Our RCIA leader suggested if we were ever in a situation of reading out Scripture aloud we should substitute YAHWEH, using Adonai, or Lord instead.

2 comments:

Mark said...

Isn't it the other way round, Jay? If you see Yahweh, you say Lord.

Jay3GSM said...

Oops, yeah that's what I meant to say. I've changed it now. Thanks! :-)