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Boston Catholic Journal - Critical Catholic Commentary in the Twilight of Reason



The Catechism of the
Council of Trent

New Edition

Cathechism of the Council of Trent


Did you know that for over 450 years — until 1992 — the authoritative Catechism of the Holy Catholic Church was the Roman Catechism otherwise known as the Catechism of the Council of Trent  — Catechismus ex decreto Concilii Tridentini  — published by Pope Pius V in 1566?

It was this most monumental Council in the history of the Church which had produced Quo Primum (
From the first) commonly known as The Latin Mass — prayed throughout the world for the better part of 2000 years — and which was effectively and universally abolished following the Second Vatican Council in 1969 — and then relegated to the inferior status of an Extraordinary Form (the Forma ordinaria or Ordinary Form having been used for only 40 years) by Pope Benedict XVI in his Motu proprio Summorum Pontificum.

The Council of Trent was convened
to revise and re-edit the Sacred Books: the Catechism, the Missal and the Breviary. This was a monumental task suffused with continuity, clearly articulating all that the Church had taught and how it prayed and worshipped for the better part of 2000 years. The Tridentine Mass retains this today, and subsequently grows around the world, especially among younger people who have been indelibly impressed with the sacred beauty, silence, and solemnity  — almost altogether absent from the Novus Ordo Mass, or the New Mass —  of what has rightly been called The Mass of the Ages.

It is nevertheless very interesting to read the Catechism of the Council of Trent , the fruit of the Fathers convened at Trento, Italy between 1545 and 1563, for its striking clarity and readability concerning doctrine and worship that is divided into (4) parts:

  • The Apostles’ Creed;

  • The Sacraments;

  • The Decalogue (the Ten Commandments)

  • The Lord’s Prayer

The catechism is profoundly spiritual. It is unsparing. It is always illuminating. And it suffuses one with hope in God’s mercy. Whether parish priest, or layman, this spiritual and ecclesiastical treasure abounds with insights in its stunning simplicity. Learn the genuine teaching of the Church in clear terms that do not demur from today's “ecumenical sensitivities”. It speaks the truth unapologetically — and in charity.

Regrettably, most versions of the Catechism of the Council of Trent are of poor quality (having merely been scanned) and suffer in the way of readability. The Scriptural references are unclear, inconvenient, or absent altogether. We have sought to remedy these deficiencies by providing you with a translation into modern English that is faithful to the original English translation that is sometimes antiquated and we have provided in-line Scriptural references in red for Biblical quotations to obviate the need to advert to other parts of the page or even the Catechism itself. It is our hope that this new format redounds to the glory of God and the salvation of souls. Click on the appropriate link below to read (or download) the Catechism in a PDF format or in an MS Word format.


Catechism of Council of Trent PDF PDF  or Microsoft Word Catechism of Council of Trent in MS Word



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Totally Faithful to the Sacred Deposit of Faith entrusted to the Holy See in Rome

Scio opera tua ... quia modicum habes virtutem, et servasti verbum Meum, nec non negasti Nomen Meum 
I know your works ... that you have but little power, and yet you have kept My word, and have not denied My Name. (Apocalypse 3.8)


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